Sunday, June 08, 2008

Dunkin' Health Insurance

[Welcome Industry Radar readers!]

Seems the folks at Dunkin' Donut's are looking for a better way to provide health insurance for employees of their franchise.

Simple enough, right?

Get a bunch of folks together to pool their purchasing power and buy health insurance on the cheap.

This may work for flour, sugar and eggs, but health insurance?

Presumably, bulk purchasing would make it easier and cheaper for franchisees – many of them just own a handful of Dunkin’ locations – to offer health insurance.


That's a loaded comment.

The effort will be particularly helpful in Massachusetts, where many employers are mandated by the state to provide health coverage for their workers

Close, but no cigar.

While the "group purchase" will allow franchises to comply with the mandate for coverage it does nothing to lessen the impact of other state mandates. Such as coverage for . . .

Blood lead poisoning

Clinical trials

Hair prostheses


Off-label drug use

And coverage for domestic partners.

These are just a few of the mandates imposed by legislation in Massachusetts. Any carrier that offers health insurance that is regulated by the state must include coverage for these items.

There is a way around state mandates.

Set up a self insured ERISA plan.

Only one problem.

States prohibit using a self funded plan to provide health insurance for associations.
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