Can a small business employer take out a group insurance plan but only add themselves and spouse and not offer to employees?
It’s an interesting question. Typically the insurance provider, offering group insurance, will want to know what percentage of employees are likely to participate, and will only offer group plans if a certain percent, say 75% of eligible employees participate. However, if instead of going to an insurance broker or carrier, the business instead works with a payroll service like Zenefits or Gusto that offers health insurance, and the business owners’ spouse is a ‘paid employee’ then it is possible for that spouse to obtain group benefits.
However, in that case, there’s no risk in offering ’employee paid’ benefits. For example, once you set up the benefit plan, there’s no obligation for you, the employer to contribute to it (employees can purchase through pre-tax payroll deductions). A few articles below might help you as you research options.
Laura, HR Writer, SPHR, MAEd
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