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Vantage Benefits Brochure

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  • 1. Unbiased Pursuit of Your Best Interests BENEFITS Independent Third Party Administrator Corporate Employee Benefits Specialists S t r o n g . S m a r t. S u r e .
  • 2. Health & Welfare Benefits Programs & Services Medical Insurance It’s a fact of life - your employees need health insurance – and the time to get it is before they have an accident or suffer a serious illness. With healthcare costs spiraling out of control, finding affordable, adequate coverage may seem overwhelming. Your VANTAGE Benefits The knowledgeable staff at Vantage Benefits can help make your search less stressful. VANTAGE Benefits Administrators offers a wide and affordable selection of superior insurance products. Our primary objective is Dental and Vision to establish a partnership between you, the insurance company Our partners provide affordable dental and vision benefits to and our staff, which assures you millions of people nationwide. Using multiple providers and • Quality Protection networks allows us to negotiate for the most affordable dental and • Valued Customer Service vision insurance plans available. • Excellent Claims Support! Life Insurance Our agency structures Employee Benefits Programs that are custom fit to your employees’ needs. In today’s society, most households are dual income families that depend on both parents to meet the family’s economic needs. When either spouse meets an untimely demise, the loss of income places considerable financial burden on surviving family Program Q&A members. By working with multiple insurance carriers, VANTAGE can assist companies in obtaining an employer-sponsored group How much support will be provided life policy to give their employees and families the opportunity to purchase inexpensive term life coverage. For many employees with for our benefits package? pre-existing health conditions, this plan offers exceptional benefit, We are prepared to: as it is one they could not qualify for independently. • Analyze – Review benefits coverage, contribution strategies, benchmark analysis, perform employee survey Disability to determine perception and evaluate, and measure ROI of Many employees would struggle to pay their bills if they couldn’t the benefit programs. work. Where would the money come from if they developed a • Design – Identify business initiatives, goals & serious illness or suffered a disabling accident that kept them objectives, conduct a gap analysis, and develop an off the job for months...or years? Nearly one-third of working age employee benefit program with a range of affordable, people will suffer a disability that lasts at least three months at quality benefits so participants can select those benefits some point during their careers. Financial experts recommend that best meet their needs. disability insurance to cover the loss of income in such an event. If • Source – Develop requests for proposal, analyze you’re interested in reviewing available options for your company’s vendor responses, negotiate and select vendors, and employee benefits package, we can help. integrate with administrative functions. • Implement – Create a “branded” communication strategy, emphasize utilization and fiscal responsibility, leverage technology systems & tools that provide employees with real- time access to data & information, and provide a user friendly on-line enrollment process. • Manage – Customer service, daily administrative support, periodic demographic reports, and review semi-annual cost analysis and employee surveys. 2 1.800.337.8005
  • 3. Technology Features For Employees: • Enroll & manage life event changes online • Elections are processed online in accordance with the eligibility rules • Elections are communicated electronically to payroll and carriers • Website is intuitive and easy to use • Online tutorials help employees educate to make informed decisions • Employees can access & manage their benefits 24/7, 365 days a year • Access to accurate & timely company information For Employers: • Benefits administration costs are reduced through automation & data management • System intelligence prevents employees from enrolling in plans they are not eligible for or adding dependents who do not qualify • All employee data and benefit transactions can be managed from a single system • Seamless integration with payroll • Relief from administration to focus on more strategic HR issues • Eliminates need to handle multiple employee election forms and chase incomplete enrollments • Premium reconciliation is simplified, or even eliminated by consolidated premium billing A b o u t VA N TA G E VANTAGE Benefits Administrators (VBA) is an VBA’s Convenience independent Third Party Administrator and full service insurance agency The convenience of the internet is undeniable. specializing in corporate Employee Benefit Programs. Independent of all Twenty-four-hour access to employee benefit plans insurance companies, VANTAGE can pursue your company’s best interest makes it especially appealing to participants who want without bias. VBA was founded solely to provide professional and timely to manage their benefits in a real-time environment. employee benefit administration services. The firm has established its Vantage is dedicated to maximizing the facility the base of operations in Southern California, and is staffed with professionals internet offers to the employee benefits industry. that have extensive knowledge in the design, implementation, and VBA’s Commitment compliance of corporate employee benefit plans. VBA has developed a web-based self-service employee benefits platform that simplifies the We have qualified hundreds of plans before the daily administration, record keeping, and compliance for health and Employee Plans Division of the Internal Revenue welfare benefits and retirement plans. Service, submitted several thousand annual reports, and earned an excellent reputation dealing with clients, VBA’s Philosophy achieving their objectives and maintaining the highest VBA remains focused on sustaining optimal levels of service at standards of expertise. We are committed to providing competitive fees. Our philosophy is to provide professional consulting ERISA programs that are flexible, diversified, simple, and administration via a real-time, online platform. and convenient. www.VantageBenefits.com 3
  • 4. Decl are Your Freedom VBA delivers cost-effective retirement plans your employees will want to participate in. Declare your freedom from high plan costs, compliance burdens and plan limitations. And ask your service representative about VANTAGE 401(k). 4 1.800.337.8005
  • 5. COBRA Administration Effortless Compliance VBA’s goal is to provide administration of COBRA and HIPAA Why You Should Outsource It regulations as effectively and cost efficiently as possible. We will customize our services to meet your company’s needs. In COBRA regulations are subject to continuous revision, making addition to administering COBRA and HIPAA, VBA will work on a it difficult to administer the program accurately. Accuracy is consultative basis to ensure that employers are in compliance vital since the penalties for non-compliance can be severe (see with all regulations pertaining to COBRA and HIPAA. We offer free “notification compliance” section below). In addition, maintaining evaluations, which include review of all required notifications and the necessary documentation is a time consuming chore. COBRA review of all policies and procedures. specialists at VBA maintain their expert status with continuing education in COBRA regulations. They also receive specialized Communication between the employers and VBA is a key training which enables them to provide each client with component to ensuring that both parties comply with all Federal personalized customer service, streamlining administration. The regulations, as they pertain to the Consolidated Omnibus end result is fast, accurate and hassle-free processing of your Reconciliation Act of 1985 (COBRA) and the Health Insurance COBRA requirement. Outsourcing this chore to VANTAGE Benefits Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA). VBA has the Administrators ensures its accuracy while conserving your tools, experience, knowledge and dedication you need to make resources, taking the bite out of your COBRA obligations. COBRA compliance effortless. Services Provided Understanding COBRA VBA provides the following COBRA Continuation services: Who Must Offer COBRA • Initial notification and qualifying event letters COBRA is a law that requires organizations with 20 or more • Notification at Termination employees to offer the continuation of group health benefits • Quarterly reports (Medical, Dental, Vision and Medical Reimbursement Account) • Assistance with open enrollment to employees (and covered dependents) upon experiencing a • Notification of any plan changes “qualifying event.” • Billing and collecting for your continuants The more you know about COBRA, the more you will want someone Employers are required to provide initial COBRA notification else to administer it for you, especially if that someone else is to covered employees and dependents, a letter detailing an VANTAGE Benefits Administrators. individual’s rights upon experiencing a qualifying event, and an explanation of the conversion privilege. Qualifying Events Notification Compliance COBRA qualifying events may include the following: • Termination of employment • Death of the employee If you fail to promptly notify your former employees about COBRA • Loss of coverage due to retirement continuation laws, you may be responsible for any medical • Medicare entitlement of the employee expenses incurred after their health plan expires. The U.S. • Reduction in the employee’s work hours Department of Labor can also impose fines up to $150,000, plus • Divorce or legal separation $1500 per day. The Insurance company, TPA, or HMO will not allow • A child’s loss of dependent status them to come back on the plan once the deadline has passed. • Leave of absence www.VantageBenefits.com 5
  • 6. Cafeteria Plans Give your employees a bigger piece of the pie... Overview The flexibility and tax savings of Cafeteria Plans make them very popular with employees, and employers also recognize significant reward in offering this fringe benefit. • Cafeteria Plans attract and retain quality employees. • Assists employers with reducing employees tax liability. • Companies can realize significant tax savings. • Cafeteria Plans do not require changes to currently Included Benefits established fringe benefits. The benefits resulting from a Cafeteria Plan are applicable to all Your plan can include the following benefits: businesses, large or small. Accordingly, our firm has been among (You do not have to include all of these features in your Cafeteria the first to help companies design, implement, and administer Plan. You may choose to offer any combination of the benefits) Cafeteria Plans. • Health insurance premiums (employee’s portion). • Medical expenses not covered by insurance (eyeglasses, How it Works medical exams, insurance deductibles, etc.) A Cafeteria Plan is a written plan in which participating employees • Adult and child day care expenses. (The cost to care for a dependent while the employee works.) can select qualifying benefits from a “menu” of choices. In most plans, eligible employees have the following options: • Other insurance coverages, including dental insurance premiums, disability and accident benefits, and group term • To receive all compensation in cash life insurance premiums. • To direct a portion of their salary to the Cafeteria Plan The employee’s redirected salary is “banked” by the employer in an Why Have a Cafeteria Plan account maintained for the employee. When an expense is incurred for one of the qualifying benefits, the employer reimburses • Your company will SAVE money. the employee from the dollars in the banked account. These • Your employees will SAVE money. reimbursements represent an additional benefit to the employee as they also escape federal, state, local and social security taxation. • Your employee morale will increase. Plan Administration Q&A Can VBA help my company establish a Cafeteria Plan? We are prepared to assist you in all aspects, including: • Designing your plan. • Introducing the plan to your employees. • Providing your employees with information answering commonly asked questions. • Meeting with employees individually to determine the maximum benefit to each employee. • Providing your company with all of the required forms. Can VBA perform the monthly administration for me? Yes! We provide total plan administration including preparation of all summary reports. 6 1.800.337.8005
  • 7. while lowering corporate taxes and earning interest income! Advantages to the Company Advantages to Employees Reduce Costs, Taxes - Earn Income Tax Savings The portion of income which the employee directs to the Cafeteria • Avoid Social Security taxes on the amounts Plan is not taxable. This includes redirected by the participating employees to the plan. (This is true of employees • Federal Income Tax You could save earning less than the maximum amount up to 10% with • State and Local Taxes taxed for social security.) these first two • Social Security Tax (assuming the employee’s salary is below items alone! • Reduce premiums for coverages based on the maximum Social Security wage base) employees’ taxable salaries (i.e., worker’s Your employee’s savings will depend on the amount they direct to compensation, disability insurance). the Cafeteria Plan and their tax rate. The example below illustrates • Reduction in the expense of any retirement plan (profit the savings a family of four might realize. sharing or pension plan) that is based on your employees’ taxable salaries. • Changes to your health plan, in combination with a Cafeteria EXAMPLE: Employee Savings Plan, can reduce your company’s health insurance costs. • Earn interest income on Plan balances throughout the year. John and Jane Smith earn a joint yearly income of $50,000. Day care for their two children costs $400/month. They pay $1,000 annually An Additional Benefit in health insurance premiums and $2,300 in qualifying medical expenses which are not covered by insurance. They decide to redirect Cost increases for health insurance and other benefits have many $8,100 of John’s salary into his company’s Cafeteria Plan to pay for companies looking to change or reduce the insurance coverage these expenses. With $8,100 less in taxable income, the Smiths will they provide for their employees. Implementing a Cafeteria Plan see their disposable income increase by over $1500! at the same time such changes are made can greatly reduce their impact on employees. 5 Without Cafeteria Plan TOTAL TAXES: $10,322 TAXES (thousands of dollars) 4 With Cafeteria Plan EXAMPLE: Employer Savings 3 TOTAL TAXES: $8,819 2 AAA Manufacturing Company implements a Cafeteria 1 Plan and 30 employees elect to redirect $2,000 of their annual compensation to pay for day care, health insurance 0 Federal FICA State Local premiums, and other medical expenses. Annual Salary reduction (30 employees x $2,000) $60,000 Contribution Q&A FICA savings ($60,000 x 7.65%) $4,590 Other Savings (estimated at 3%) $1,800 What happens to the money that employees - Retirement plan contributions put into their Cafeteria Plan? - Unemployment taxes - Insurance premiums based on compensation Companies maintain the money until their employees incur Interest income on Cafeteria Plan balance $300 expenses, after which the employee requests reimbursement. (assume average balance of $5,000 x 6%) Can an employee forfeit a contribution? Savings to Company $6,690 Yes, contributions are lost when an employee’s actual expenses do not equal the contribution put into the plan. Employees can minimize or avoid any forfeitures by carefully estimating their expenses. www.VantageBenefits.com 7
  • 8. Unbiased Pursuit of Your Best Interests VANTAGE Benefits Administrators 31285 Temecula Parkway, Suite 235 Temecula, CA 92592 1.800.337.8005 Clientservices@Vantagebenefits.com © 2008 Fortress Financial Services, Inc. DBA Vantage Benefits Administrators, all rights reserved. This publication is distributed with the understanding that the publisher and distributor are not rendering legal, accounting or other professional advice and assume no liability whatsoever in connection with its use. S t r o n g . S m a r t. S u r e .