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Microsoft workers to pay part of health care in 2013
Old 10-12-2010, 11:00 PM   #1
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Microsoft workers to pay part of health care in 2013

Microsoft workers to pay part of health care in 2013 | Beyond Binary - CNET News

The company didn't go into details on what exactly employees will have to pay, but said there will be a maximum amount that workers will have to pay both individually and as a family. Microsoft currently pays 100 percent of the cost of coverage for workers as well as for a spouse or domestic partner and children.

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Old 10-12-2010, 11:22 PM   #2
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Microsoft has a self-funded plan, so it really has more to do with rising healthcare costs and less to do with healthcare reform. I don't know off hand what is and isn't exempt for self-funded plans in the new bill since they follow a different set of laws than an insurance company would.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:31 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by dgoldenz View Post
Microsoft has a self-funded plan, so it really has more to do with rising healthcare costs and less to do with healthcare reform. I don't know off hand what is and isn't exempt for self-funded plans in the new bill since they follow a different set of laws than an insurance company would.

Still that it is pretty unusual for high tech company to start requiring workers to pay for their healthcare.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:38 AM   #4
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Still that it is pretty unusual for high tech company to start requiring workers to pay for their healthcare.
Really? I'm retired from a high tech company and I recall paying a modest percentage of my health care premiums while an active employee. Plus deductibles, co-pays, etc. In retirement, those percentages have increased.

I thought my situation was typical and that the lucky folks at Microsoft and a few other companies who paid zero were just fortunate exceptions. You're saying I was the exception and most high tech sector employees pay zero?
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:47 AM   #5
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DH and I each work for a different high tech company. We both pay a portion of our healthcare.

We've been in this field for 20+ years and there has only been one job with a boutique tech consulting firm that fully paid for healthcare and that was 15 years ago.

Big Blue claims to fully pay for primary care, but it's not quite the case if you talk to the employees.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:30 AM   #6
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Still that it is pretty unusual for high tech company to start requiring workers to pay for their healthcare.
Not at all. What is unusual is that there were still any private sector employers who still paid 100% of the premiums.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:57 AM   #7
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Big blue does not fully pay health care - monthly cost to employee + spouse + 2 children is $400 if you choose Kaiser as your provider - Yes $400 - without dental.
For IBM self funded, you still have to pay about $200 + sharing %20 of the cost when you go to the hospital (there is some cap)

Microsoft is an exceptional company as far as providing health care to their employees!
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:13 AM   #8
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Big blue does not fully pay health care - monthly cost to employee + spouse + 2 children is $400 if you choose Kaiser as your provider - Yes $400 - without dental.
For IBM self funded, you still have to pay about $200 + sharing %20 of the cost when you go to the hospital (there is some cap)

Microsoft is an exceptional company as far as providing health care to their employees!
With the exception single employees that select HSA, cost is $0.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:44 AM   #9
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Not at all. What is unusual is that there were still any private sector employers who still paid 100% of the premiums.
Whole Foods still pays 100% of premiums for employees and their families, plus contributes to an HSA account on the employee's behalf. Great benefit for a relatively low-paying job.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:48 AM   #10
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Whole Foods still pays 100% of premiums for employees and their families, plus contributes to an HSA account on the employee's behalf. Great benefit for a relatively low-paying job.
I said unusual, not nonexistent.
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Old 10-13-2010, 12:34 PM   #11
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My tech company's healthcare premiums are ridiculously cheap compared to my wife's financial company's healthcare premiums - on the order of 6-to-1 (my company's is 1/6 of my wife's).
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Old 10-13-2010, 12:36 PM   #12
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My tech company's healthcare premiums are ridiculously cheap compared to my wife's financial company's healthcare premiums - on the order of 6-to-1 (my company's is 1/6 of my wife's).
I'm certainly not complaining about mine. For both my wife and me I pay about $95 a month out of my paychecks for HDHP/HSA coverage, *and* my employer kicks in $1000 a year to our HSAs which all but wipes out the premium costs. Not "fully paid" but close. Not sure what to expect for 2011, but over the last few years our portion has remained almost unchanged.

This was far superior than what my wife was getting last year as an employee of the local school district.

Last I checked, my Megacorp's two PPO/HMO plans cost employees about $200-300 a month for the 'employee + spouse' coverage (and obviously with no HSA match since these are not qualifying plans for an HSA).
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Old 10-13-2010, 01:16 PM   #13
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Really? I'm retired from a high tech company and I recall paying a modest percentage of my health care premiums while an active employee. Plus deductibles, co-pays, etc. In retirement, those percentages have increased.

I thought my situation was typical and that the lucky folks at Microsoft and a few other companies who paid zero were just fortunate exceptions. You're saying I was the exception and most high tech sector employees pay zero?
+1

I've been working for the same high-tech company in the Silicon Valley for 23 years and have been paying a percentage of premiums for almost 15 of those years. Currently, my share runs about $500/month for my wife and me. I don't know many people working in the private sector that don't have to pay something.

Edit:
Okay, for the sake of accuracy, I just checked my paycheck stub. My actual monthly share of premiums is $450, of which 2/3 is to cover my wife. This total also includes small contributions for dental and vision.
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Old 10-13-2010, 02:40 PM   #14
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We paid a small amount of the medical premium with Megacorp. Over the years, the amount kept increasing. Now that DH is retired, we pay nothing for his insurance, but pay $230 a month for me.

It will be interesting to see if there are any changes at enrollment time this year...
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:36 PM   #15
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Microsoft has a self-funded plan, so it really has more to do with rising healthcare costs and less to do with healthcare reform. I don't know off hand what is and isn't exempt for self-funded plans in the new bill since they follow a different set of laws than an insurance company would.
I'm willing to bet that healthcare reform is part of the rising costs. For instance, I know many plans cut off dependents at age 23. Upping the age to 26 carries additional cost liability. I'm sure they would take that into account in their predictive models.
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:46 PM   #16
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Still that it is pretty unusual for high tech company to start requiring workers to pay for their healthcare.
I worked for a high tech company and was peripherally involved in buying benefits coverage as part of the senior management team. We were owned by a foreign company that had a philosophy of paying 100% for health coverage for the employee and family.

But, we were advised by the benefits firms we dealt with to charge employees at least a token amount for their own coverage and also for family coverage. I don't actually remember the reasoning. In the end we provided free coverage for employees and charged about $100 a month for spouse and $200 I think for spouse and family. Even those rates were highly subsidized and the cost of insurance, while high, was always considered a necessary cost of being a responsible employer and treating employees well.
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:54 PM   #17
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Even those rates were highly subsidized and the cost of insurance, while high, was always considered a necessary cost of being a responsible employer and treating employees well.
Sounds like a good place to work. In general, tech companies especially software intensive companies, treat employees well, because it is usually clear that intelligent, well trained well motivated employees are what makes it all go around.

Ha
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Old 10-13-2010, 03:57 PM   #18
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Sounds like a good place to work. In general, tech companies especially software intensive companies, treat employees well, because it is usually clear that intelligent, well trained well motivated employees are what makes it all go around.
Could be, but I also suspect that the typical high tech firm's workforce is younger on average than in most other industries, and thus they may have lower per-employee health insurance costs -- allowing them to be a bit more generous than average?

Just a thought -- not sure there's anything to it, but it seems to make sense.
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:04 PM   #19
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I work for a software company as well. We use to pay only $50 per paycheck for me and my wife but because of the recent increases (before the healthcare reform) we're now paying $200 per paycheck. That's $3600 pay cut for me.
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Old 10-13-2010, 04:30 PM   #20
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Sounds like a good place to work. In general, tech companies especially software intensive companies, treat employees well, because it is usually clear that intelligent, well trained well motivated employees are what makes it all go around.

Ha
We built high tech optical systems. But the same reasoning was used and was not entirely altruistic. When you are seeking out the best people in their field and paying them $150k a year to build $10 million systems, another $10k for insurance to keep them happy is a good investment.
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