Insurance plan binder As the name implies, ICHRA is based on reimbursing employees for insurance rather than buying it for them.(Photo: Shutterstock)

With benefits season in full swing, it’s time to make smart choices for your company (or your client) on how to spend health care dollars for 2020. This open enrollment will be different than prior years, as there is a new HRA that is predicted to change the model of employer sponsored health care. While health reimbursement arrangements are often faced with limitations, the new Individual Coverage HRA (ICHRA) is radically different. So much so, that HHS projects that in the next 5 to 10 years, roughly 800,000 employers will offer Individual Coverage HRAs to pay for insurance for more than 11 million employees.

But the truth is, this new model of benefits isn’t perfect for everyone. Certain types of businesses, certain locations and certain company configurations will benefit more from the new HRAs than others. Here’s how to decide which route is best—the reimbursement arrangement model or the traditional, employer-based group plan.

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