New Health Insurance Plan for Small Employers Promises Affordability

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Small employers are inching towards a minor breakthrough for providing health insurance to employees. A new product by Zane Benefits Inc. has launched today that would allow small businesses to offer health insurance at zero net cost.

Zane Benefits Inc. is a web-based health insurance purveyor targeted primarily at employers of small businesses. The company has developed software called ZaneHRA (Health Reimbursement Arrangement) that administers health insurance and benefits to employees. The system works thusly: employees are able to find individual health insurance plans, when in use employees submit claims online to their ZaneHRA account, and are reimbursed.

Zane Benefits’ latest venture is an online software called ZanePOP which makes it easier for employers to offer employees health insurance. The current economic situation has forced many small businesses to cut costs drastically including dropping health insurance coverage for employees. The employees in turn pay the plans with after-tax dollars. Employers, conversely, have traditionally been able to pay for insurance with pre-tax dollars.

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ZanePOP has engineered a way for employees to utilize their pre-tax dollars in purchasing individual health insurance policies. The software takes advantages of a new 2009 mandate that allows employees to automatically put a portion of their salary into individual health insurance.

ZanePOP is IRS, ERISA and HIPAA compliant, meaning both employers and employee can benefit. It does so by allowing employees to reimburse themselves with pre-tax salary the cost of health insurance premiums. The result saves employees between 20 and 40 percent on health insurance costs. Employers save 7.65 percent on each dollar reimbursed through the plan in FICA.

The software comes at a time when a heated debated over health care and health insurance reform is taking over the Senate. President Obama faces an uphill battle as Republican oppose the bill outright and some Democrats threaten to kill the bill in favor of a completely new bill that excludes some controversial language.

Meanwhile, health insurance providers such as Anthem Blue Cross, Aetna and Humana have been steadily increasing premiums and rates on individual health insurance plans due to rising medical costs. As a result, many Americans are opting out of health insurance altogether.

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