On Tuesday, June 19, the United States Department of Labor issued final rules establishing additional criteria to current ERISA regulations. Namely that employers may now join together in a group or association that can serve as the “employer” sponsor of a single multiple-employer group health plan. AICC has been following developments in this regard since President Trump signed an Executive Order 13813 in October 2017 to expand the regulations to promote “health care choice and competition”. Essentially, the new rules will allow small employers with “commonality of interest” to potentially gain access to, and benefit from, large group insurance ratings and rates. AICC ran a Chairman’s Survey on this subject earlier this Spring.
Now that the rules have been established, AICC will follow through on gathering more information and determining if this is a service that AICC can provide for the benefit of its membership. AICC’s survey showed that its members:
comprise a large number of small group employers
nearly all provide group health insurance to their employees
nearly all make a significant contribution towards monthly premiums
85% responded favorably to having an interest in and wanting to learn more about Association Health Plans (AHP)
AICC’s Board of Directors has made the exploration of providing access to an AHP as a member benefit a priority. To that end, AICC has been in dialogue with insurance professionals to remain educated on the subject and to learn of new developments as they occur. While there are many factors yet to be determined that will influence what can ultimately be provided, with AHP rules now set, please watch for further surveys and communications from AICC on this important topic.