When offering employee benefits polices, it is crucial to review your monthly invoice to ensure your policy is up to date and that you and your employees are properly covered. Groups receive an itemized monthly invoice that includes the due date, the total premium amount due, past due amounts, and any fees that apply. It is important to check the accuracy of each monthly invoice and pay the premium amount listed on your bill. If you have made changes to your policy (adds, terminations, other changes), it’s important to review your invoice to ensure those changes are reflected. Many groups miss adding new hires to employer-paid coverage, such as disability income or life insurance.
A common policy for carriers is that you have a 30-day window to submit any enrollment changes to them for processing. If you have an employee that is newly hired on or leaves your company, then you have 30 days to submit the enrollment paperwork to the insurance carrier. If that enrollment paperwork is submitted after the 30-day window, it can cause administrative issues for the carrier’s billing department, as well as for you. In the case of an employee’s enrollment being sent more than 30 days after their effective date, the carrier could refuse to enroll the employee due to not being submitted in a timely fashion.
If the carrier does approve the enrollment, then they may either (1) retroactively add the for the original effective date, which results in a large invoice adjustment for you, or, (2) if the original effective date is long past, the carrier may only enroll the employee going back 60 days from the request date, which would result in a gap in coverage for the employee.
If the carrier decides to decline the enrollment request, then that employee would have to wait until the plan’s next Open Enrollment Period to then join the policy. Neither of these scenarios have positive impacts for the employee or for your business.
Another common situation that can arise with invoices is adding employees during the end of the month. Many carriers finalize their monthly invoices around the middle of the prior month (usually between the 10th to 15th). If you have an enrollment request that is close to or comes after when the carrier finalizes their invoice, then the enrollment change for that employee may not show up on the following month’s invoice. If it is a new enrollment, then you will typically see two months’ worth of premiums charged for that employee, resulting in a higher than normal invoice. In the event of an employee termination, the following month’s invoice would then display the appropriate credits for that termination.
Reviewing your invoices for accuracy is an important task and responsibility when offering employee benefits, not only for your business, but for your employees. It is recommended that you audit your invoices at least quarterly, if not monthly.
If you encounter any anomalies on your invoice, or if you have any questions, please contact your ARC client advisor for guidance.