What does your insurance agency do for you?
By Jose De Leon III
Considering the high cost of health care in the United States, it’s no question these days whether an individual should be insured. In the workplace, health insurance is an enticing benefit; in Texas, 48 percent of the population is insured through their employer, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation study based on census data. With many options regarding what benefits employers can provide to their employees, human resources departments and business owners have a difficult task in deciding the packages that make most sense for their situation, but insurance agencies help with just that. Davenport & Associates specializes in group benefits, and prides itself on being a different type of agency that provides year-round support for more than insurance. According to Dusty Davenport, CEO, they provide resources that can save their clients thousands in HR consulting and professional fees.
Analysis and Guidance
Insurance packages are a lot of information to handle, and Davenport says it’s not uncommon for clients to feel overwhelmed. Changes to the Affordable Care Act and other legislation makes enrolling a process that takes careful consideration; According to a 2015 ConnectedHealth consumer survey, 54 percent of employees say selecting a health plan is more complicated than solving a Rubik’s cube. “Davenports and Associates will help with any insurance questions. Our mission is to match clients with an insurance package that works for them,” he said. “For over 20 years, we’ve fulfilled this goal by offering products from top-rated carriers and supporting clients with friendly customer service and clear straight talk.”
Most employers typically review their company’s insurance plan once a year. However, due to changes in personnel and other activity that may occur over the year, Davenport’s team of 15 brokers maintain close contact with their policy holders. They recommend that business owners start thinking of any changes they might make to their insurance plan in advance and discuss with their insurance broker, especially if they are a large group.
Davenport and his team stay up-to-date on all federal and state benefit laws and serve as a resource to the HR staff by regularly informing and advising them of changes that will affect their employer and employees. For small businesses that with a small or nonexistent internal HR department, Davenport can be a real benefit, providing support with claim service, explanations of employee benefits, online administration tools to help with payroll, and vital guidance with compliance issues. Davenport and Associates provide the legal documents typically produced for a fee by attorneys and HR service providers to keep employers in compliance with the U.S. Department of Labor as well as resources for COBRA, health care reform, ARRA, HIPAA, HIPAA Privacy, Section 125, and FMLA. Davenport says that 32 percent of business plans audited by the U.S. Department of Labor received fines of over $10,000. Davenport & Associates assists with reporting, filing, and answering other compliance questions to avoid that problem.
When working with an employer, he makes it a point to make employees aware of the value that their employers are offering them with their insurance. Some employers cover the entire cost of insurance for the employees while others cover a percentage. Davenport says that often, employees are not aware of how much coverage they have and don’t take full advantage of it. “Taking advantage of their preventative services through their employer’s plan, they could possibly detect and prevent future complications with high healthcare costs,” says Davenport.
They also provide online resources to expand existing HR departments’ capabilities, such as online access to benefit information, wellness program implementation, and benefit booklets. This is all part of Davenport’s efforts to increase communication and education about insurance for business owners and those managing insurance for large groups. The firm provides a range of articles, videos, and handbooks covering topics such as benefit statements, company policies, health awareness, retirement planning, wellness initiatives, and more. “Think of us as an extension of an HR department,” Davenport said.
Dusty Davenport has been in the insurance business for nearly 12 years alongside his father, Rip Davenport. He hopes to continue his father’s legacy of providing excellent service, while taking it in a new direction by expanding their service offerings. “Break away from the mold of the traditional broker,” Davenport said.
For more information, visit www.davenportins.com or call (956) 971-0326.