Individual & Family
Group health
Medicare Supplement


Free Assistance 800-320-6269

California health insurance  -  Group health insurance in California  -  Group health annual renewal

What is the Annual Renewal for California group health insurance?

The annual renewal is an important part of your Small Group health insurance plan in California. Options and how it is handled can vary from carrier to carrier but there some important considerations to look at when this time of the year rolls around. Let's find out how the annual renewal is important to your company and its health benefits.

Establishing the Annual Renewal for your group plan

For most California health carriers, the annual renewal or "anniversary month" is the month every 12 months from your original effective date. For example, if your company's effective date was November 1st, your renewal or anniversary month is usually every November for as long as you have the health plan in effect. Most deductibles, out of pocket max's and other resets occur Jan 1st regardless of your anniversary date. This is why many companies shop for California health insurance in the 4th quarter with the intent of getting a Jan 1st effective date for the new plan. This way, you avoid having essentially two deductibles for employees who have had significant medical claims during the year.

What occurs at Annual Renewal time for Group health insurance

Some important things occurs each year at anniversary for group health plans. First, this is the time when most changes are allowed. It can mean requested changes to the actual health plan within the same carrier. If a company wants to change to another health insurance carrier altogether, they can do this at any time. The only concern is the double deductible issue mentioned above. Group health plans are month to month so there is no contract outside of that. Some group administrators think that they can only cancel a group plan at anniversary time but this is not true. Changes to waiting periods for new employees, periods for covered absences of leaves (both personal and medical), coverage for part-time employees, and other criteria that the employer establishes at the time of enrollment can be re-evaluated and changed at anniversary for most carriers. Due to Health Reform, there is a new requirement to send out a Standardized Benefit Summary to each employee within a certain time frame to avoid penalties. Make sure as the employer to get these out to employees right away.

Employee dependents addition and Changes to group plan

With California health insurance plans, if an employee declines coverage for dependents and the dependents are not losing another a group health plans, anniversary date is usually when the dependents can be added to the group health plan. It is important that employees declining dependent coverage understand that they may need to wait till annual renewal to bring them back on unless they dependents are on another qualified group health plan and they lose it. The section of the application where employees decline coverage usually stipulates this and requires a signature from the employee.

Newborns can typically come on right away as long as the carrier is notified within 30 days of birth. Each carrier is different so double-check with your carrier. If the carrier is NOT notified in their needed time frame, the newborn may need to wait till anniversary depending on how strict the carrier is.

Rate changes for Group plans

California health insurance carriers have had Statewide rate increases on average, about once per year. Some carriers will apply this increase immediately to all or a block of companies while others will apply the rate increase at annual renewal following the increase date.
RAFF or Risk Adjustment Factor is typically re-evaluated at anniversary date based on the claims of the preceding 12 months. The RAFF is a + or - 10% rate change from the standard rates that the carrier is allowed to apply to the company based on its individual employee health risks.

What is required by the carrier at annual renewal

Some carriers do not require any action on behalf of a company during annual renewal unless changes are requested. If the company is fine with any rate or RAFF changes, they can continue to pay their premium and leave the plan as is. Some carriers however require that the company re-qualify based on the criteria used at the time of initial enrollment. They may require a copy of the most recent DE6 and applications or declinations for employees not enrolled. They are essentially asking to the company to re-qualify for guaranteed issued health coverage based on eligibility.

You can run your California Business Health Quote here to view rates and plans side by side from the major carriers...Free.

Again, there is absolutely no cost to you for our services.  Call 800-320-6269 Today!




One Form...Multiple Options:

  • - Tax Credits through Covered California
  • - Private Exchange
  • - Mini-Cafe Plans with Best Value
  • - HSA's and HRA's
  • - Pre-Tax Contributions and Sect 125's

Call 800-320-6269

Our Services are FREE to You!


One Form...Multiple Options:

  • - Tax Credits through Covered California
  • - Private Exchange
  • - Mini-Cafe Plans with Best Value
  • - HSA's and HRA's
  • - Pre-Tax Contributions and Sect 125's

Call or Enter Census in 15 Minutes 


You May Qualify for $1000's in Tax Subsidies:

Employee Count Under 25
Average Salary less than $50K

Call 800-320-6269
Anthem Blue Cross California
Blue Shield of California under Covered California
Kaiser of California
Health Net of California
and more
Thousands of Californians
Hundreds of California Companies
Thousands of Californians
Hundreds of California Companies

from SC

"My sincere thanks for making a miracle happen- 2014 health insurance !! Many thanks for your expertise and advice yesterday !!"

from SD

"Thanks again for your help - I had absolutely no idea how to get this done when I got up this morning. You've made it remarkably easier than I expected. I hope you're not stuck at the office all night..."

from KV

"Anyway, I hope you got some time off this past week! Thank you again for your help and efforts on my behalf! I was very lucky to find you."

from EK

"I thank you very much for the time that you have invested in handling everything

from SR

"I truly appreciate the quick response and will think of you in the future if I need to make any changes to my insurance plans."

from VH

"You are awesome... takes a huge worry off my back, thank you for your kind. thanks for your time and kindness. !!"

from SA

"Wow, I can't thank you guys enough for your help...I couldn't imagine trying to tackle this on my own!"

from LM

"You are my new best friend. A HUGE thank you again.

Find out what customers are saying about our services

20 years of experience in the California health insurance market has taught us one thing...Competent and experienced guidance is Invaluable

We can quickly (very important) size up your health insurance needs and clearly explain the options available to you. Our focus is finding the most coverage at the best cost to you.

We are licensed Covered Ca agents with in-depth knowledge of their plans, process, and tax credits.

Call will be Pleasantly Surprised.  800-320-6269

Request a 10 Minute Health Plan Check-up

We'll quickly see if you have the best priced plan available and if you qualify for a tax credit

calhealth website

Our Services are FREE to You is a Goodacre Insurance Services Website

This website is owned and operated by Goodacre Insurance Services, which is solely responsible for its content. This site is not maintained by or associated with Covered California, and Covered California bears no responsibility for its content. The email address and phone numbers that appear throughout the site belong to Goodacre Insurance Services, and cannot be used to contact Covered California.