Group Health Insurance: 3 Features To Look At For Plans That Cover Family Members Of Employees

Being able to offer group health insurance to your employees can really help your company stand out. Many potential employees will be more likely to choose your company over a competitor's if your company has an excellent group insurance plan, as medical expenses are particularly expensive in America. The average annual spending on health care for a person under the age of 65 is approximately $4,255 a year. Because of this, you should focus on getting an attractive group health insurance plan for your company—especially one that offers coverage for the employees' family members. Here are 3 policy features you should spend some time going over.

The Relationship and Age of the Family Members Covered

The actual cost of the group insurance plan to your company will depend on who may be covered by the insurance company. Understanding the insurance company's definition of 'family member' is critical. For example, some group health insurance policies only extend coverage to immediate family members of your employees. Others may extend health insurance coverage to any family member that resides within the same household. In these situations, an elderly mother or father may be covered as well. While a policy that offers more coverage will be more appealing to your employees, it may come at a higher cost to your company.

Whether there are any age requirements should also be considered. This is particularly important for employees with children. You don't want the group health insurance plan to extend coverage to children forever, as this can become a huge toll on your company. You can customize coverage options by setting a maximum age for children that will be extended coverage.

The Process Required to Register Family Members for Coverage

Understanding the process required to register your employees' family members to the group health-insurance plan is also important. You need to determine whether employees are only able to register family members within a certain time period each year or whether they can do so at any time that they wish. As you'll need to process some of the paperwork involved with the registration process, you must determine whether your company has the manpower to handle inquiries throughout the year.

Determining the amount of involvement that your company needs to have with employees registering family members is also important. Some group health insurance companies will only require a signature from the company to basically acknowledge the changes that have been made. Other insurance companies may require your company to do a lot more work than just that. In these situations, you might have to open a separate department within your company to handle the paperwork involved.

The Type and Amount of Coverage Offered

The cost of the group health insurance plans to the company will also be dependent on the amount of coverage that you are offering to your employees. For example, you need to determine what a reasonable maximum cap may be for certain medical treatments. Your company might want to limit the amount of acupuncture or physiotherapy sessions that are covered under the group health insurance plan, for example.

To determine what works for your company, consider the type of work that your company does. For instance, if your employees are required to sit for long periods of time in a cubicle or are required to perform strenuous exercises, you might want to choose a plan that offers more coverage for physiotherapy sessions or massage therapy than for optometry visits.


Signing up for a group insurance plan not only makes your company more attractive, but also helps your company avoid liabilities. The health insurance plan helps to ensure that your employees are receiving the medications and medical treatments that they need.