Top 100 Firm Eide Bailly has launched the Eide Bailly Private Exchange, a private insurance exchange that offers businesses an alternative for health care coverage.

The exchange lets businesses that no longer qualify for or cannot afford traditional group health insurance plans create a defined contribution plan where the employer gives employees a fixed dollar amount that they can then spend on one of the variety of insurance plans on offer in the exchange.

"This approach allows even the smallest of businesses to offer their employees quality health-related benefits, while maximizing the IRS-approved tax savings for both the employer and employees," said Eide Bailly Employee Benefits principal Linda Heuer, in a statement. "The Eide Baily Private Exchange provides a simple tool for both businesses and their employees. Comparing plan options is as easy as comparing airline prices on travel Web sites."

"Cost and regulations are making group health insurance plans less and less viable," Heuer continued. "Forward-thinking employers have already begun adopting the Eide Bailly Private Exchange to address their benefits challenges and prepare for the upcoming requirements of the Affordable Care Act. Early adopters are finding it to be an effective solution, especially if they had given up on offering their employees any type of benefits."

In addition, according to Heuer, businesses can coordinate with public insurance exchanges that provide subsidies to individuals if their employers don't offer group coverage or their group coverage is unaffordable. This coordinated effort can, in many cases, offer lower costs to the employer and their employees than offering a group health plan.

The exchange also offers the ability for employees to be connected to live experts licensed in all 50 states who can provide them the best options for their family, regardless of pre-existing conditions or budget. It also coordinates with pre-tax plans, such as flexible benefit plans and health savings accounts.

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