6 Coronavirus Questions From the Past Week

If one person asks a question, somebody else is probably thinking the same thing.  In today’s post, I thought I’d capture some of the questions we’ve received in the past week.  Hope this is helpful.

Q:  If an employee is laid off and removed from the health plan, will she need to start the deductible over again when she returns to the plan?

A:  Most of the health insurance carriers that responded to this question said no, as long as the return was in the same plan year.  There were two that said yes, but management was reconsidering that strategy.


Q:  If an employee is laid off and removed from the dental plan, will he need to start the deductible over again when he returns?

A:  Every carrier that responded to our question said no.  The employee would pick up where he left off as long as it was part of the same plan year.  This may not be the case with all dental insurance companies, but it was the only answer we received.


Q:  Do group life insurance contracts have any exclusions for pandemics?

A:  I’d encourage you to read your own policy carefully, but we asked 8 group life carriers, and each said they have no exclusions for pandemics.


Q:  Will the Massachusetts PFML be delayed due to the pandemic?

A:  I asked one of my contacts at the Department of Family and Medical Leave, and she said, “We are planning to proceed as scheduled.  Absent any revision to MGL c. 175M by the legislature, we are expected to begin administering benefits on January 1, 2021.”


Q:  Lots of insurance companies are allowing coverage to continue for laid off or furloughed employees.  What about an employer that is reducing hours below the minimum required for coverage?  Can these people stay on the plans?

A:  Most of the group health, life, dental, and disability companies are responding with a lot of flexibility to this question.  Ask your carrier, and they are likely to allow continued coverage, at least for a period of time.


Q:  Have you heard of anyone getting approved for the Payroll Protection Program loan?

A:  Yes.  I know of at least one local employer that was approved and has received the funds.


If we can answer questions or be of service to you, our readers, in any way, please give us a call at (866) 724-0008 or click the link below.  We want to help.


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