Financial Wellness @ Work

Meet Me in Atlanta

In just 3 weeks from now, I’ll be traveling to Atlanta for this year’s SHRM Annual Conference and Exposition, which takes place June 24 to June 27.  In addition to this year’s entertainer, Jerry Seinfeld, there are so many opportunities to learn what’s new and cutting edge in the HR field, from practical tips to innovation in HR to motivating people.  I’m excited to be able to share my own experience in the field of financial wellness, and I’ll be speaking about Health and Wealth: Adding Financial Wellness to Your Wellness Program on Monday, June 25.  Using a case study of a Fortune 500 company that has been embedding financial wellness within their wellness program for the past few years, I’ll be revealing the results of an ROI analysis and sharing best practices for financial education. Read more

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Why Your Employer’s Disability Insurance May Not Be Enough

Everyone wants to be a hero – to have that impact where they “protect” someone from a danger – dashing into a house on fire to save a baby.  And in life, we protect many things, some valuable – our house and life  – and others that are not so valuable.  The reason we protect things is that they are important to us. However, we often neglect protecting one of our most important assets and that is our earning power – the income we generate that pays for our basic expenses – housing, food, education, etc. Read more

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U.S. Chamber of Commerce Speaks Out on the Future of Retirement Security

I recently spoke to an employee who had decided, at age 54, that it was time to start focusing on retirement.  Her goal was to retire at age 65, and she was wondering if that would be possible, considering she had not been saving for retirement for the past several years.  She’d been in a financial fog during that time while trying to recover both emotionally and financially from a rough divorce. Read more

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Are You Aware That May is DIAM?

So what is DIAM?  It stands for Disability Insurance Awareness Month, sponsored by the Life and Health Insurance Foundation for Education (LIFE).  Many employees are unaware of the disability coverage that may be available to them as an employer-sponsored benefit, so spread the word this month about your workplace disability insurance.   Read more

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Pet Parents Need Insurance Too!

Does your company’s voluntary benefits menu include pet insurance?  Believe it or not, 4% of employers in 2011 did indeed offer pet insurance, according to SHRM’s 2011 Employee Benefits Study. Employees who have pets may welcome this benefit, since the ASPCA estimates that “pet parents” spend over $13 billion in veterinary care to keep their pets happy and healthy. Read more

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How to Evaluate Your Life Insurance During Open Enrollment

Once a year, this strange phenomenon occurs called “open enrollment.”   For most people,  “open enrollment” is time for the fine art of pretending that if you ignore something it will go away and it always works out that way. However, what most people don’t realize is that in this case, ignorance is certainly not bliss and they are overlooking a very important part of their overall planning that can have a dramatic impact on their future and the future of their family.  Read more

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No Fooling – Prepare to Celebrate National Employee Benefits Day on the First Workday of April

I’m so glad that April 1st  will be falling on a Sunday this year since that means only my family at home can try to trick me with April Fool’s jokes. What I can look forward to is that the first workday of April, Monday the 2nd, is National Employee Benefits Day.  This event is a celebration recognized each year by the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP) to recognize trustees, administrators, corporate benefits practitioners and professional advisors for their hard work and dedication in providing quality employee benefits and this year, its focus is on the International Foundation’s two newest initiatives: retirement security and value-based health care. The IFEBP has actually been celebrating National Employee Benefits day since 2004 and offers a website which has numerous resources for helping employers learn more about this year’s theme of retirement security and value-based health care, including government resources, recent news and survey updates and information that can be shared with employees. The site also has suggestions on how to celebrate and offers Benefits Day premium items, including a National Employee Benefits Day mug and T-shirts. Read more

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The Safety Net of a Group LTC Plan

Last week, Prudential, the 2nd largest life insurance company in the U.S., announced they were getting out of the individual long term care insurance market.  Prudential isn’t the first to exit the marketplace since both Guardian Life Insurance and MetLife also recently abandoned sales of LTC insurance.  Although Prudential will no longer be selling any new policies to individuals, they will honor existing contracts and will now be focusing entirely on the group LTC market.  With the marketplace for individual policies shrinking, now may be a good time to add group LTC insurance to your benefits menu. Read more

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Don’t Let the Tooth Fairy Take Back Cash From Your Employees

Dental implants are becoming a common solution to missing teeth and an alternative to bridge and crown work.   However, according to WebMD.com, many dental insurance plans do not cover implants.  My husband, Dave, learned this the hard way when our dentist convinced him to replace a worn-out bridge with 2 dental implants.   Dave has employer-provided dental coverage through a nationally known insurance carrier so our dentist submitted a pre-certification form before he began the work on the dental implants.  The insurance carrier denied the coverage but DID provide the lower negotiated rate for the procedure on the rejection letter.  Our dentist wanted to charge $3,600 but the discounted PPO rate was actually only $2,800. Read more

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Making Your Benefits Communications Oscar-Worthy

The Oscar awards were on TV this past Sunday but since there were no actors I was rooting for, my husband decided we were going to rent a movie so he picked Tower Heist, which after watching it I can say is definitely not worthy of an Oscar.  So what does Tower Heist have to do with benefits communication? Read more

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