Category Archives: Benefits Network General Agency

Benefits Network Makes Holiday Delivery to Somerset Food Pantry


Missing from photo: Joni Thomas, Kari Imhoff, and Tracy Tirko

Somerset, Pennsylvania – Employees of Benefits Network and Your Health Insurance Shop teamed up to donate a pickup truck full of food to the Somerset Area Food Pantry.

Throughout the year, employees donate money and chip in $1 every time they choose to wear jeans to work (other than a Friday). At the end of the year $600 was collected to buy food for the Somerset Area Food Pantry.

As in years past, Casey Maschue and Debbie Sanner spearheaded the effort by checking bargains weeks ahead and shopping from local retailers.

Just before Christmas, Benefits Network employees gathered in the parking lot behind their Main Street Office to load Mashue’s pickup truck. Shown, left to right, are Debbie Sanner, Heather Kiraly, Tracey Kiesnowski, Deb Barron, Casey Maschue, Mandy Sujansky, Cristy Pritts, Kelly Barron and Holly Purbaugh

Insurance Coverage for Part-Time, Seasonal and Temporary Employees

Most employers are not able or willing to offer insurance coverage to their part-time, seasonal and temporary employees. However, they also understand the importance of having health insurance especially now that employees can incur significant fines for not having coverage.

Benefits Network’s Your Health Insurance Shop can help. Our Individual and Senior Product Specialists can help your employees who are otherwise ineligible for group coverage. Our team will:

  1. Determine if they are eligible for subsidies or tax credits
  2. Help choose a plan that includes their doctors and hospitals
  3. Select a plan that meets their health care needs and their budget

And the best part – there is never a fee for our help! A Your Health Insurance Shop representative can conduct an enrollment fair onsite at your place of work or schedule appointments with individuals at their convenience.

Contact your Benefits Network Consultant today about providing this service to your part-time, seasonal and temporary employees free of charge to you and your team.


Get Ready for Marketplace Open Enrollment

FFM Agent & Broker Training for Plan Year 2016 Will be Available Through Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)-Approved Vendors and the CMS Marketplace Learning Management System (MLMS)
CMS is pleased to announce that, in addition to the plan year 2016 FFM agent and broker training provided by CMS that is launching on the new MLMS web platform later this summer, training will also be offered by a limited number of CMS-approved vendors to fulfill the FFM training requirement for agents and brokers registering participating in the Individual and/or SHOP Marketplaces.
To learn more about the upcoming years process, join their webinar: Plan Year 2016 Registration and Training for Agents and Brokers
These presentations provide an overview of the requirements and highlight changes since plan year 2015. Registration for the August 19 session from 1:00-2:30 PM ET is still available. If you wish to register for this session, please log in to and complete the following steps:
Select “Training Events” from “My Dashboard.”
Select the “View” icon next to event Title “Federally-facilitated Marketplace (FFM) Agent and Broker Plan Year 2016 Registration and Training Requirements.”
Select “Register Me.”

CMS Announces New Individual Special Enrollment Period

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announces a special enrollment period (SEP) for individuals and families who did not have health coverage in 2014 and are subject to the fee or “shared responsibility payment” when they file their 2014 taxes in states which use the Federally-facilitated Marketplaces (FFM). This special enrollment period will allow those individuals and families who were unaware or didn’t understand the implications of this new requirement to enroll in 2015 health insurance coverage through the FFM.

For those who were unaware or didn’t understand the implications of the fee for not enrolling in coverage, CMS will provide consumers with an opportunity to purchase health insurance coverage from March 15 to April 30.  If consumers do not purchase coverage for 2015 during this special enrollment period, they may have to pay a fee when they file their 2015 income taxes.

Those eligible for this special enrollment period live in states with a Federally-facilitated Marketplace and:

  • Currently are not enrolled in coverage through the FFM for 2015,
  • Attest that when they filed their 2014 tax return they paid the fee for not having health coverage in 2014, and
  • Attest that they first became aware of, or understood the implications of, the Shared Responsibility Payment after the end of open enrollment (February 15, 2015) in connection with preparing their 2014 taxes.

The special enrollment period will begin on March 15, 2015 and end at 11:59 pm E.S.T. on April 30, 2015.  If a consumer enrolls in coverage before the 15th of the month, coverage will be effective on the first day of the following month.

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