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Group Health Insurance Plans for Washington State Employers

We work with dozens of insurance companies to offer you comprehensive benefit plans tailored for your company and industry

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What Is Employer Group Health Insurance?

Group health insurance is a single plan that covers a group of people. The policy is taken out by the Employer (your company) to offer to your employees and their families. Offering employer-sponsored health insurance is a necessity if you want to attract and retain quality employees.

Does every employee need to be on the plan?

In Washington State, you need to offer health insurance to every employee that meets the eligibility criteria. Typically this means XX hours per week (you decide) and there can be a probationary (waiting) period before coverage begins.

Employer group plans usually require at least 75% of the eligible employees to enroll or participate in the plan. 

Employer vs Employee Cost

As the cost of health insurance has increased over the years, most employers pay a portion of the monthly premiums and have their employees contribute a portion as well.

The employer contribution percentage varies based on the size of your company and industry you operate in.

The bulk of employers in Washington State pay 75% of the premium with the employee paying 25%. However, some pay as low as 50% and others pay 100%. This amount usually comes out of their paychecks directly.

McGregor Benefits has extensive experience working with companies of varying sizes and industries to establish or enhance their health insurance plans. Schedule a consultation with us and we will analyze what is the best contribution for your company based on budget, company size, and industry.

Employer Plans Offer Premium Coverage vs Individual Plans

Employer group health insurance plans typically have lower premiums and richer benefits than Washington State individual plans.

Employer groups have access to lower deductibles, lower copays and many more benefit options than an employee could purchase on their own. Network options are typically more robust as well. 

For companies, the benefits of employer group health insurance plans are employee appreciation, security, and increased productivity.

Are employers required to offer group medical insurance?

Many people assume that businesses are required to offer healthcare coverage, but that is not true. Businesses with fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees do not have to provide coverage. Those that meet this requirement are fined if they do not offer healthcare coverage for employees. See Group Coverage Basics for more detail, or reach out to our local employer group health insurance agents.

Shot of a smiling woman and man standing inside a coffee shop looking at something on their touchscreen
Shot of a smiling woman and man standing inside a coffee shop looking at something on their touchscreen

Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP)

Historically the SHOP was only available from the WAhealthplanfinder. However, beginning in 2018, small business health coverage will no longer be available through WAhealthplanfinder due to no health insurance company offering.

Employers can now purchase any plan and apply to the IRS for the tax credit. Health care tax credits for up to 50% of the premium are still available to qualified small business owners.

Small business owners must pay at least half of employees’ healthcare premiums and have fewer than 25 full-time-equivalent employees who earn an average of $50,000 or less per year.

Employer Group FAQs

How many employees do you need to qualify for group health insurance?

To qualify for small group health insurance, your company needs two or more employees. This includes the owner.

What is group health insurance?

Group health insurance plans provide coverage to a group of members, commonly comprised of company employees or members of an organization. Group health members usually receive insurance at a reduced cost because the insurer’s risk is spread across a group of policyholders.

How do I get group health insurance for my small business?

The most common way to get group health insurance for your small business is to go through a broker or agent. If you choose not to use an agent, you will be responsible for benefits administration tasks, such as initial and annual enrollments, and billing and claims resolution.

What is a group number for health insurance?

Each employer that purchases a health plan for its employees also has an ID number. This group number identifies the specific benefits associated with your employer’s plan. Healthcare providers use the group ID plus your member ID to file claims for your care.

Where is the group number on health insurance card?

The group number is always on the front of the health insurance card, but the specific location will vary from provider to provider.

Employee Benefits Services We Offer

We value personal relationships, affordability, reliability, compliance and simplicity.

Group Health Insurance

Medical insurance, also known as health insurance, reimburses the insured for expenses incurred from illness or injury or pays the care provider directly for those expenses.

Group Dental Insurance

Offer employees coverage for dental procedures ranging from annual exams and cleanings to fillings and root canals. Choose from multiple levels of coverage and carriers.

Group Vision Insurance

Vision insurance often covers routine eye health expenses such as eye exams, contact lens & fittings, eyeglass lenses and frames, and may provide a discount on LASIK.

Group Life Insurance

Offer employees the option to protect their family & assets in the event of the employee’s death with group life insurance plans like term or permanent life insurance policies.

Group Short Term Disability

Offer workers a portion of their salary if they are unable to work for a short period – typically three to six months.

Group Long Term Disability

Offer workers a portion of their salary if they are unable to work for longer periods – typically over 3 months.

Self-Funded Health Insurance

Reduce insurance costs for you & employees, and customize the plans that you offer to your employees.

Voluntary Benefits

Offer employees products such as dental, vision, life, LTD and accident. These are paid for by the employee through payroll deferral.

Included In Your Employer Group Health Insurance Plans

Open Enrollment

Our producers hold enrollment meetings so your employees understand the benefits and take the time to answer all questions and concerns.


Tired of all the paper forms? We offer online benefits, HR onboarding, compliance resources & ACA analytics.


We have helped thousands of employees with claim issues. We understand the claim issue pitfalls, encourage your employees to call us for help and we will call the insurance carrier on their behalf.

Annual Renewal

The moment we receive your renewal we will analyze the marketplace. We will present options so you can offer affordable benefits that are in line with your company’s expectations

Employee Benefit Insurance Agents

Talk with a broker or agent to find out about all your options on premium costs.

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