Skip to content Accessibility info

Partner Agency Insurance Services Blog

All You Ever Wanted to Know About Insurance

Small Business Health Options Program

Smiling Mature Woman Florist Small Business Flower Shop Owner

What is the SHOP Marketplace and What Will It Mean for Small Business Owners?

The SHOP (Small Business Health Options Program) Marketplace will open in October of this year for coverage that is proposed to take effect on January 1, 2014. In addition to tax credits, the SHOP marketplace will offer small businesses (less than 50 employees) a new opportunity – the ability to let all of your employees pick their own health insurance carrier, at whatever coverage level your small business is able to offer.

The SHOP marketplace will handle the paperwork and send you one consolidated bill for all of your employees.  This means greater choice for your employees and less administrative hassle for you, allowing you to stay focused on running your business.

If you run a small business, Partner Agency can assist you and your employees to enroll online and facilitate the SHOP experience.

Benefits of the SHOP Marketplace

Some of the many features the SHOP will provide to small business owners:

  • Tax credit –The small business tax credit is only available for businesses with less than 25 employees and only through participation in the SHOP.
  • More choice – The SHOP consolidates the buying power of small businesses to offer more choices for affordable health care coverage.  Employees can select any health plan carrier in the metal tier chosen by the employer.
  • One-stop shopping – Employees can research, compare, purchase, and enroll in primary and ancillary coverage, such as dental and vision, all through the SHOP website as guided by the employer’s decisions.
  • Less paperwork – The SHOP will handle enrollment, plan administration, and billing, which will help employers save time and resources.
  • One monthly payment – Employers make only one monthly payment directly to state-run SHOP marketplaces, no matter how many different insurers with which their employees enroll.
We will keep you informed as more progresses with the Affordable Care Act and Covered California.