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Frequently Asked Questions about Open Registration Haven Life



You have questions about how to compare insurance plans and benefit packages. We have answers.

Autumn is here – which means it's time to take off the shirts, carve up some pumpkins and prepare for another Open Enrollment season. Here are some common questions (you can call them "frequently asked questions") and the knowledge you need to gain confidence.

In this article:

What is different about Open Enrollment 2021?

"Last year, COVID-19 and a virtual work environment posed a unique challenge for Americans in opening applications," said Kevin Robinson, Senior Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer at HSA Bank. a new set of challenges with a hybrid working model. "Not to mention COVID itself – as a recent Haven Life survey showed is very much on people's minds when they make open enrollment decisions this year.

Some employers may start offering hybrid Open Enrollment application processes that combine both face-to-face meetings and online webinars — or they can eliminate face-to-face meetings and make Open Enrollment completely virtual.

virtual meetings in connection with your employer's presentation of benefits.This year, make sure you use these online tools to your advantage — including the ability to set up quick virtual meetings to ask questions about different plans before filling out your Open Enrollment application.

"Think of one-on-one virtual meetings with employers / HR teams to review materials and provide customized, relevant advice," suggests Robinson. Remember that your HR team wants to help you understand your various benefit options – so make sure you ask all the questions you need before making your final decisions.

Of course, it is always a good idea to research some of the most common open registration questions online before setting up that phone call or zoom meeting with HR- therefore we have compiled this FAQ for open registrations to answer top level questions about comparing health insurance plans, open HSA and FSA and evaluate life insurance options.

Ready to get started? Our frequently asked questions about open registration will help you gain a better understanding of what to do during an open registration period.

How early can you start making decisions about open registration?

In general, the best time to evaluate your open registration options is as soon as you receive them. From medical coverage to life insurance, review everything that would be included before signing up.

If you are the type of person who postpones your open registration decision until the last minute, set aside some time to review your employer insurance and benefit packages as soon as they become available.

"Start the process sooner rather than later," says Robinson. "This will give more time to digest information, review plans and options and ask questions."

This year, many HR departments can present Open Enrollment information virtually – and in some cases, you can give yourself the opportunity to review Open Enrollment materials on your own time instead of in a group meeting. While it gives you plenty of time to study your options and ask questions, it also encourages procrastination – especially if you do not feel you have the tools you need to make an informed and confident decision.

This is why starting the process early can be a great benefit (pun intended). Review your materials as soon as you receive them, write down any questions that come up when comparing plans, and ask your HR team for the clarifications you need to help you make the best decisions for you and your family.

How can you involve your partner or spouse in decision making?

When it comes to making decisions that benefit your family: Be sure to include all family decision makers in the open registration process. This means that if you have a spouse or partner, let them know what plans and options are available — and let them weigh in on what options they think are best.

"Include all family decision makers," Robinson explains. "As healthcare becomes a more important topic among families, workers may be able to invite family decision-makers to participate in benefit fairs, meetings or open webcasts for registration."

Since many companies are doing Open Enrollment practically this year, you have plenty of opportunities to share your employer's various packages with your spouse or partner. If it is appropriate for a family decision maker to join the Open Enrollment Zoom meeting, for example, give them the chance to participate. If your employer pre-records an Open Enrollment presentation or puts Open Enrollment resources online, give your spouse or partner the opportunity to review the material — they may catch something you missed or come up with a question you hadn't thought of.

What is the best way to compare health insurance plans?

Health insurance can be confusing enough on its own – and trying to compare two or more health insurance plans can be even more difficult. With each option offering a different set of copies, co-insurance, deductibles, max pockets, online doctors and prescription coverage, how can you decide which health insurance package is best for you and your family?

Understanding how to compare health plans can be difficult, but it is not impossible. In many cases, your employer will offer tools that can help you compare plans and choose between options. "Videos, presentations, calculators and visual content can be easily viewed and a way to see real-time savings and benefits," explains Robinson – so make sure you use these resources to understand the differences between your different options.

Want even more resources? We have a guide to help you choose the best health insurance plan for your family, including how to calculate how much a health insurance plan can cost you in a year. If you are still unsure about the differences between copies and co-insurance, Healthcare.gov offers an overview of important health insurance terms – and if you want further help calculating your potential health care costs, there are plenty of online health plan calculators.

Are HSA and FSA Right for You?

In addition to calculating the differences between health insurance packages, you will also want to calculate if you and your family can benefit from a health savings account (HSA) or a flexible expense account (FSA).

Health savings accounts allow you to deposit estimated dollars in a savings or investment account. From there, your HSA can be used to cover qualified medical expenses this year or in the coming years, including when you retire. In general, health savings accounts can be excellent financial tools – but usually you need to be enrolled in a high-deductible health insurance plan to qualify for an HSA, so keep that in mind when comparing options.

Flexible Spending Accounts can also be excellent financial tools. Like HSAs, FSAs allow you to contribute pre-tax money to an account that can be used for eligible medical expenses. Unlike HSAs, flexible spending accounts are use-it-or-lose-it, which means that if you do not spend the money you have saved for a certain period of time, your savings will return to your employer.

Want to know more? We have a guide to all the benefits that come with a health savings account, including the triple tax relief an HSA can offer – and if you want to know how to use your FSA dollars without losing them, read our guide to making the most of your FSA.

Should you consider vision or dental insurance?

Many employers will offer vision or dental insurance packages along with health insurance plans. Does that mean you should sign up for a vision and dentist when reviewing your health coverage? It depends on.

"I recommend that you carefully consider the political benefits of dental and vision insurance before you buy," Robinson explains. "The decision to purchase the coverage comes from a cost-benefit analysis based on the consumer's specific circumstances and their history of dental and vision needs."

If someone in your household is likely to need specialized vision or dental services – a child who needs braces, for example – an insurance package may be a good choice. If you only expect to visit the dentist or optician for an annual cleaning or screening, it may be better to pay out of pocket, especially if you can cover the cost with HSA or FSA dollars. "If it's just looking at routine services, most people will likely find that vision or dental coverage will cost them as much or more than paying for those services out of pocket," says Robinson.

That said, anyone with children or other eligible relatives should seriously consider adding vision or dental protection to their benefit package – because you never know if this will be the year your child needs extra braces or optometric care.

Want to know what other insurance packages you should consider if you have (or are considering having) children? Read our guide to choosing insurance plans when you have children. You may want to consider disability insurance, for example – especially if you are planning to have children next year. If your children have pets, you may want to take out a pet insurance plan to make sure you can afford all the medical procedures your dogs or cats may need.

Are you going to take out a group life insurance plan?

Many employers offer group life insurance plans — but not all group life insurance plans offer enough coverage to provide long-term financial security for your loved ones. Before signing up for an employer-sponsored group life insurance plan, ask yourself if group life insurance will provide the coverage you need or if you should consider an affordable, individually owned life insurance policy.

Need help? We have a guide for understanding group life insurance plans – and a guide to help you decide how much life insurance is best for you and your family.

Want even more help? Use our term lifetime calculator to find out how much a Haven Life plan can cost. You may be surprised at how affordable monthly life insurance premiums can be — and how much life insurance coverage your affordable premiums will provide you.

Our Editorial Policy

Haven Life is a customer-centric life insurance company supported and wholly owned by the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual). We believe that navigation decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall well-being can be refreshingly easy. ). We believe that navigation decisions about life insurance, your personal finances and overall well-being can be refreshingly easy.

Our content is created for educational purposes only. Haven Life does not support the companies, products, services or strategies discussed here, but we hope they can make your life a little less difficult if they suit your situation.

Haven Life is not authorized to provide tax, legal or investment advice. This material is not intended to provide and should not be relied upon for tax, legal or investment advice. Individuals are encouraged to seek advice from their own tax or attorney.

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Haven Term is a life insurance policy (DTC and ICC17DTC in some states, including NC) issued by the Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company (MassMutual), Springfield, MA 01111-0001 and is offered exclusively through Haven Life Insurance Agency, LLC. In NY, Haven Term is DTC-NY 1017. In CA, Haven Term is DTC-CA 042017. Haven Term Simplified is a simplified life insurance policy (ICC19PCM-SI 0819 in certain states, including NC) issued by C.M. Life Insurance Company, Enfield, CT 06082. Insurance numbers and driver's license numbers and features may vary by state and may not be available in all states. Our agency's license number in California is OK71922 and in Arkansas 100139527.

MassMutual is rated by A.M. Best company as A ++ (Superior; Top category of 15). The rating is from Aril 1, 2020 and may change. MassMutual has received various ratings from other rating agencies.

Haven Life Plus (Plus) is the marketing name of the Plus Rider, which is part of the Haven Term policy and offers access to additional services and benefits at no cost or at a discount. The rider is not available in all states and is subject to change at any time. Neither Haven Life nor MassMutual are responsible for the provision of the benefits and services made available under Plus Rider, which are provided by third party providers (partners). For more information about Haven Life Plus, visit: https://havenlife.com/plus.htmlphia] Good service with simple and relaxed communication that was not intrusive. Helped with what I wanted and the whole process took maybe 25 minutes from calling to being approved to configure my online access. (if you are approved immediately)

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