Yes, group healthcare is possible as a REALTOR®!
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has been working with Dergalis Associates and BenAdvance to facilitate access to a health insurance plan that is available to you as we understand the challenges of finding and obtaining quality health insurance. Through BenAdvance, a partner of Dergalis Associates, multiple group healthcare plans are now available!
Important details of the offerings:
- There are several plan options available: Two with flat rates meaning there is one fixed rate no matter your age. This plan is available in all states. The other plan offering is an age rated plan that is best for anyone under the age of 45. This plan is NOT available in all states.
- The flat rate plan is an association plan through Elevate to Wellness and enrolled by BenAdvance. You must join a special purpose union New York Local 714 in order to gain access to the association. The association charges a one-time fee of $125 once you are accepted and the union charges monthly dues of $20 of which you receive a separate benefit from see details. The age rated plan is offered through Golden Years.
- You must be a self-employed REALTOR and have a Federal Employer Identification (FEIN) to join the BenAdvance plan. If you don’t have a FEIN we have included instructions on how to obtain easily online at no cost. The FEIN is not required for the plan offered through Golden Years.
- These plans are medically underwritten so not everyone who applies will be accepted. Do not change or cancel any current coverage till your new coverage is in place.
- You must apply, be accepted and enroll by the 18th of the month in order to start coverage on the first of the following month.
Call 866-409-1349 to enroll in a group healthcare plan today!
BenAdvance and Golden Years are available during normal business hours 8:00am-5:30pm EST Monday-Friday to take calls and enroll agents.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW MANY PLAN OPTIONS ARE THERE?
There are 8 plan offerings through BenAdvance and Golden Years which have flat rates: three with Cigna PPO, and three plans with Blue Cross and are available in all states. Additionally, there is one plan offering through Golden Years which is age rated and not available in all states. Over age 65 will be directed to Medicare plan options. BenAdvance also offers individual telemedicine options.
WHO DO I CALL TO COMPARE PLANS AND RATES AND START THE ENROLLMENT PROCESS?
Call 866-409-1349. You will be redirected by age to the proper plan administrator. If all lines are busy or if it is after hours or on the weekend, please leave a message and they will return your call within 24 hours Monday through Friday. Note our call center is EST times open 8:00am-5:30pm.
WHO DO I CALL FOR QUESTIONS ONCE I ENROLL?
All contact information as well as important plan information will be mailed to you in a welcome package once you enroll and are accepted.
ARE THE PLANS GUARANTEED ISSUE?
No, you must call and speak to a licensed agent to complete a questionnaire and be prescreened. The carrier has the right to decline you based on health issues. It is important to keep in mind that being underwritten protects the longevity of the plan. Do not cancel or amend current coverage until you have new coverage bound.
WHAT IS REQUIRED TO JOIN THE PLAN?
For plans sold by BenAdvance you must be a self-employed REALTOR and have an EIN number. If you do not have an EIN number, we will provide you the instructions on how to obtain one free of charge and easy to obtain online in minutes. This is a special purpose EIN and will not create additional tax filings by you. If you are an LLC, S Corp or C Corp and already have an EIN you can use it to enroll in the plan. For age rated plans sold by Golden Years an EIN number is not required.
IS THERE AN OPEN ENROLLMENT PERIOD?
No, you can join anytime, but applications must be accepted by the 18th of the month to be effective the 1st of the following month. If you miss that date your enrollment will be effective the 1st of the next month which will be approximately 6 weeks later. Note deductibles do not carry over from previous coverage.
WHAT ARE THE COSTS ASSOCIATED WITH JOINING THE PLAN?
For plans sold through BenAdvance there is a one-time set up fee of $125 that is paid to Elevate to Wellness which is the association that provides the plans. In order to gain access to the plans you must join a special purpose union and pay monthly dues of $20. A portion of the dues will be credited to your and will come back to you at retirement. In addition, you will be receiving life insurance coverage included with your application. See benefit summaries for more information. For plans sold through Golden Years there is no setup fee or monthly dues required and no life insurance benefit included.
DOES THE PLAN INCLUDE PRESCRIPTION DRUG COVERAGE?
Yes. For more information please speak to a licensed agent.
WHEN DOES THE PLAN RENEW? AND WHAT TYPE OF INCREASES HAS THE PLAN EXPERIENCED?
January 1st is the annual renewal date. You can expect your renewal information to be mailed to you mid to late November. While no one can predict renewals, the plan has thousands of enrolled members and has experienced only a very small increase the last several years. Should a rate increase ever be necessary, the rate change would take effect January 1st.
CAN I DEDUCT PREMIUMS FROM MY TAX RETURNS?
As a self-employed individual or company, you may be eligible to deduct your premiums. Please see your CPA or tax preparer for tax advice.
IF I HAVE A TEAM, CAN MY TEAM MEMBERS ALSO GET COVERAGE UNDER THIS PLAN?
For BenAdvance plans as self-employed independent contractors each realtor needs to have their own FEIN. If a realtor has an existing FEIN and employs administrative staff, the administrative staff can apply for coverage so long as the employer-realtor applies for and obtains coverage. If the employer-realtor either does not apply or applies and is denied coverage, your administrative staff will not be able to obtain coverage under this plan.