Tuesday, November 25, 2014

First aid Workers Compensation claims/ Small employers dropping coverage

I received notice from State Fund yesterday that beginning January 1 2015, State Fund will be reporting all first aid claims to the Workers Compensation Insurance Rating Bureau.  For those of you with experience modifications this could potentially cost you a lot of money.  As I have said in previous emails, the cost to an employer of small claims far exceeds the actual cost of the claim.  It is not clear if the Bureau has sent a directive to all insurance companies to report these claims.

Please see the request below from a writer for the Orange County Register.  Have any of you dropped your insurance coverage and sent employees to Covered California because it was actually cheaper for your employee because of the subsidies?

Hi Scott,

Thanks for taking the time to talk to me on the phone. As discussed, I am following up with this e-mail to ask if you might be able to put me onto a small business or two that has dropped health coverage and sent its employees to the exchange -- preferably in southern California and even more preferably (if I can get really greedy) in Orange County. Thank you very much.

Best regards,

Bernard J. Wolfson
Health Business Writer

Orange County Register

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

ACA Enrollment Toolkit for Small Employers and their Employees

Dear Scott,

Thank you for your ongoing efforts to educate business owners and their employees about the Affordable Care Act and its requirement that most U.S. residents have health care coverage. We appreciate that you and Small Business California have partnered with Health Law Guide for Business to ensure that small and ethnic business owners, and their employees, know about their options to get covered.

To help small business owners and their employees get the health insurance they need and deserve, we’ve created a toolkit of easy-to-use materials that can be shared with those who may have questions about their best available options.

Health Insurance Information Toolkit

The toolkit materials are available in English and Spanish and can be printed from our website:
·         The English materials can be found at
·         The Spanish version is at

This toolkit includes:
·         Fact sheets with information about what the ACA means for small businesses, including information about tax breaks for businesses or premium subsidies for individuals.
·         Get Covered information cards for business owners and for employees.
·         A health coverage eligibility guide to determine the programs for which employers, their employees and family members are eligible.
·         And tools for employers to share with employees, including:
o   A poster to hang in break rooms or other places where employees gather.
o   An envelope-sized flier with insurance information to include with employees’ paychecks.
o   An on-board letter to share with new employees that provides information on how to contact Covered California, Medi-Cal or a certified insurance broker for information about individual plans.

Help Spread the Word

We hope that all California small business owners and their employees can use this information to get covered, and we are asking that you:
·         Download the Health Law Guide for Business icon onto your webpage to make the information easily available to visitors to your site through a quick click. The code to download our link is http://www.healthlawguideforbusiness.org/link-to-us.
·         Contact us for printed copies of the tool kit to share.  Health Law Guide for Business will cover printing and postage. To order copies of the toolkit contact Katie@LucasPublicAffairs.com
·         “Like” Health Law Guide for Business on Facebook so our updates will reach those in your network.
·         “Follow” Health Law Guide for Business on Twitter to help us reach others who would find the information useful.
·         Forward this email to your colleagues so they have access to the toolkit and can share it with others.

Thank you for helping to get important information about how to get covered into the hands of small business owners throughout California.  Our goal is to see all small business owners, their employees and their families have the information they need to enroll in a health insurance plan that’s right for them. If you have any questions, please contact me at 916-492-2707.

On behalf of Health Law Guide for Business,

Carri Ziegler
Senior Vice President
Lucas Public Affairs
1215 K Street, Suite 1120
Sacramento, CA 95814
916-492-2707 ext 210

The Insurance Commissioner has recommended a very small increase for workers compensation effective January, 1 2015. The increase was from an average rate of  $2.74 to $2.77.
This was lower than expected and was attributed to the passage of SB 863 which Small Business California strongly supported a couple years ago.
The Workers Compensation Bureau has started publishing Experience Modifications for 2015.
Keep in mind that these are averages and insurance companies are not bound by this.

Scott Hauge
Small Business California
2311 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA  94116