Survey Finds Gaps in Latinos’ Understanding of Employee Benefits

Only half of Latino employees say they know how much they spend monthly on their benefits, how much life insurance coverage their family needs, whether they are on track to retire comfortably, and how much they should be spending on their benefits. according to a Mass Mutual study.

Many Latinos surveyed said that learning more about their finances is too complicated, confusing, and time-intensive. Seventy-six percent of Latino employees don’t use an online financial tool to manage their retirement, healthcare and other forms of insurance. However, 81% say that would be likely to use such a tool if it were free. This study finds that many Latino employees cite difficulty, time, and a lack of information about where to go and whom to trust as the reasons for not knowing more.

To help provide more educational resources, MassMutual launched MapMyBenefits (available in English only), a free, online tool that enables employees to prioritize their benefits choices and make the most of each benefit dollar based on life stages, financial goals and personal finances. The holistic approach to financial planning at the workplace combines retirement readiness, healthcare coverage and preparation for life’s unforeseen events.

Applying for an ACA exemption might be confusing

Millions of people potentially qualify for an exemption to the Affordable Care Act’s mandate that individuals carry health insurance, but the process of applying for some waivers is not straightforward. Some exemptions involve mailing applications and copies of supporting documents that might not be at hand. Certain applicants must apply directly to the Internal Revenue Service when 2014 tax returns are filed, but others can apply for exemptions now through the federal exchange. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model)/The Associated Press (10/7)

Consumers Say That Medicaid Gap is Confusing and Unfair

A HealthPocket survey asked Americans, “Is it fair 23 states have a gap where people can make too much to qualify for Medicaid but too little for an Obamacare subsidy?” Forty-six percent said the gap was unfair. The average 30 year-old who earns around the poverty level would spend 14% of their income on insurance premiums even with the lowest cost health plan on an exchange. The gap could be eliminated by reducing minimum income limits for Obamacare premium subsidies or increasing the maximum income limit for Medicaid participation. For more information, visit HealthPocket.com.

Some seniors find Medicare Advantage choices confusing

Many seniors find it daunting to choose a Medicare Advantage plan, and as a result often end up with one that might not meet all their needs, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. In response to reports of confusion among seniors, the federal government began rating plans based on customer service, access to health care providers and other factors, but enrollment in five-star plans increased at a slower pace than in three-star plans, said Joshua Raskin of Barclays Capital. Kaiser Health News/Capsules blog (5/14)

Last Updated 10/20/2021

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