WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS!

With each passing day, we learn more and more about the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. With health and safety as our top priority, our staff will be working remotely.

We ask for your patience and understanding as we navigate this unfamiliar time. Please see below the direct website to our carriers, this will make it easier for you to report a claim and make payments.

Please know that we WILL get back to you the same business day if you are to contact us by phone, text or email.

We thank you for your understanding and business. Please be well!

Venture Insurance Group

Phone: 810.724.0199
Text: 810.395.5748
support@ventureinsgrp.com

All health insurance clients it is very important to call the number on the back of your card prior to contacting us.  Due to privacy laws they will not give us your information over the phone.  If you have any concerns please contact Crystal Potter at cpotter@ventureinsgrp.com

Darci Breslin
President
Venture Insurance Group Inc.

Pioneer State Mutual
www.psmic.com

Frankenmuth Insurance
www.fmins.com

Citizens/Hanover Insurance
Hanover.com

Progressive Insurance
www.progressive.com

Foremost Insurance
www.foremost.com

Michigan’s new no-fault law

The reformed Michigan no-fault law now offers drivers more choices, as well as changes to their auto insurance. While some of these changes will be phased in over time, most will go into effect on July 2, 2020. At Venture Insurance, we want to help our customers understand how their insurance coverage is affected.

What’s on the horizon for Michigan drivers

Previously, it was mandatory for drivers to carry unlimited Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits, but starting July 2, 2020, drivers will be able to choose from five different coverage options:

  • Unlimited PIP coverage
  • $500,000 limit
  • $250,000 limit
  • $50,000 limit; this is the lowest limit available, but only for drivers who are on Medicaid. (Your spouse and other relatives who live with you may be on Medicaid or have other qualified health coverage.)
  • Opt-out of PIP coverage entirely; however, you, your spouse and all relatives who live with you must have Medicare or qualified health insurance to be eligible.

Additionally, these changes will also take effect July 2, 2020:

  • Insurance companies must reduce PIP premium rates, and guarantee that they will be reduced for eight years. The rate reduction applies only to personal injury protection premiums, which is one part of your entire auto insurance costs. The average reduction takes into account both the PIP premium and Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association (MCCA) vehicle assessment fee, which cannot be reduced by insurance carriers. The reduced amount will depend on the PIP coverage that a driver selects – the higher the coverage, the lower the reduction. For example:
    • Unlimited coverage would receive on average a 10% reduction
    • $500,000 in coverage would reduce on average by 20%
    • $250,000 in coverage would reduce on average by 35%
    • $50,000 in coverage would reduce on average by 45%
    • Individuals with Medicare or qualified health insurance could opt out and receive a 100% rate reduction on certain portions of PIP, depending on their individual circumstances. MCCA deficit fee would still apply ($0 for 2020 has been announced for MCCA).
  • Non-driving factors can’t be used to set insurance rates. These factors include postal zone, credit scores, home ownership, education level and occupation.
  • Minimum liability coverage limits will be increased from $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident to $50,000/$100,000. The policy will default to $250,000/$500,000 (or $510,000 for commercial auto policies) if you do not make a choice. Drivers must sign a selection form to choose limits lower than $250,000/$500,000.
  • Tort damages will also be recoverable for excess allowable expenses and work loss. And, the “Mini-Tort” damage cap will increase from $1,000 to $3,000 for accidents occurring after July 1, 2020.
  • Policyholders will be given the option to select their PIP coverage at each renewal. If policyholders do not make a specific selection with their new policy or when their current policy renews after July 2, 2020, their policy will be issued or renewed at the default level of Unlimited coverage.
  • The order of determining who will pay for a no-fault claim – called the “order of priority” – has changed in some cases involving:
    • Relatives who do not reside in the household of the named insured unless they are away at school. These relatives (such as your children) would need to have their own insurance policy, even if they are driving a car you own.
    • Non-relatives who reside in the household, even if they are listed drivers. They would need to have their own insurance policy.

 

Please contact us so we can help you review your policy and the option that works best for you!

 

2019 Open Enrollment Season is Almost Here!

The countdown is on for the 2019 Open Enrollment season for both Medicare and the Under 65 Marketplace (ACA).  We know that healthcare can be overwhelming and that is why Venture Insurance is taking appointments to help you navigate through the confusion.

Areas of focus:

  • Medicare- Supplement and Advantage
  • ACA Marketplace
  • Small Group Healthcare plans
  • Hospital Indemnity plans
  • Life Insurance
  • Annuities

Call or email us to schedule an appointment before it is too late!  (810) 479-5957  jjohnson@ventureinsgrp.com

 

The countdown is on, let Venture Insurance help you with your Medicare needs!

We are currently booking appointments beginning October 1st for the 2019 season.  Don’t wait until it is too late to make sure you are completely covered.  We specialize in Medicare Supplement, Medicare Advantage, Prescription Drug Plans, Accident and Critical Illness Plans, let us help you navigate through the confusion.

Contact us today to schedule you appointment: 

Phone: 810-479-5957

Email: jjohnson@ventureinsgrp.com

Big Changes Maybe Coming to Your Current Medicare Plan!

Did you know each year carriers update their Medicare plans?  Even small changes to your plan can cause major upset to your current coverage.  Trust Venture Insurance to review plans, prescriptions, and physicians to make sure you are receiving the best coverage possible. Book your free Medicare review by September 30th, spots are filling up quickly!  Contact us at: 810.479.5957 or jjohnson@ventureinsgrp.com

 

Welcome Jennifer Johnson!!!

Jennifer Johnson is joining Venture Insurance Group as a Medicare and Health Specialist. Jennifer has worked a number of years in education before deciding to focus her passion towards helping others with their healthcare needs.

 

Jen specializes in:

  • Group Health Plans
  • Individual Health Plans  (including the marketplace)
  • Medicare
  • Prescription Drug Plans
  • Dental/Vision
  • Long Term Care/Cancer/Hospital Indemnity/Critical Illness Plans
  • Life Insurance
  • Annuities

 

 

Jennifer Johnson
Medicare and Health Specialist
649 N Van Dyke
Imlay City, MI 48444
jjohnson@ventureinsgrp.com
Direct: 810-479-5957
Agency Text: 810-395-5748

 

Medicare Excess Charges – How to Avoid Them

By: Jonathan Tate


Healthcare providers (such as your doctor) have options when it comes to accepting Medicare’s payment for services.  They may:

  1. Not accept Medicare;
  2. Accept Medicare payment in full (called “Accepting Medicare Assignment”);
  3. Accept Medicare payment in part (called “Not Accepting Medicare Assignment”)

It is rare that a provider will not accept Medicare at all.  The vast majority fall into either #2 or #3. What is the difference?

When a provider accepts Medicare Assignment (#2), they accept Medicare’s payment in full.  If you have a Medicare Supplement or Medicare Advantage Plan, you can know what you will pay.  You will be billed your portion according to your plan’s benefits. If you do not have a plan, you will be billed the 20% that Medicare does not pay.  Historically, more than 95% of claims have followed this model.

But if a provider chooses to not accept Medicare Assignment (#3), you may be billed an additional 15%.  These providers may do all of the following:

  1. Bill Medicare for the 80%,
  2. Bill you (or your Medicare Supplement) the remaining 20%,
  3. Bill you an additional 15%.  This 15% charge is called Part B Excess Charges.

On the surface, this practice is distasteful at best.  But to the providers’ credit, as Medicare reimbursement cuts continue to lower payments to their offices they may feel the need to increase revenue elsewhere.  They may view Excess Charges as necessary, and we at Venture Insurance expect this practice to grow more popular in the future.

 

How Do I Avoid These Charges?

Some states have adopted measures that prohibit Excess Charges (see the map above).  If you receive care in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, or Vermont then those providers are not permitted to bill for Excess Charges.  But if you receive care from any provider in other states, then you need to prepare for them.

One way to prepare is by choosing a Medicare Advantage plan and using providers within your plan’s network.  Medicare Advantage plans use networks of providers who are contractually bound to honor the payment schedule set by your plan.

A second way is to choose a Medicare Supplement plan that covers those Excess Charges if/when they occur.  Currently, only Plans F and G cover Excess Charges.

Finally, if you have a Medicare Supplement plan that does not cover Excess Charges (or if you have no plan at all), you may ask your provider if they accept Medicare Assignment and also check here to do an online search.

There are different rules in different states.  And those rules follow you regardless of where you live or where you bought your Medicare plan.  It can be important to work with an agency that understands different states and has a national view, which is one reason Venture Insurance Group now writes across the Midwest in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia, and now Missouri.  Contact us for local knowledge with nationwide understanding. We’re obsessed with insurance so you do have to be!

I Should Have Asked My Friend

Posted by: Jonathan Tate, Vice-President of Sales

One of my friends recently let me borrow his paint sprayer.  Even though this sprayer is the professional model, since I have used others in the past I thought I could figure it out.  I spent 90 minutes preparing the machine according to the instructions, but when I tried to spray it all just came out in a giant SPLAT!  I spend another 30 minutes trying every setting and reading through the instructions again before giving up. Then I spend another hour cleaning up the mess.

As I was putting the last of the machine away, I noticed this part pictured laying off to the side.  It’s the nozzle. It controls the spray, and without it the machine simply won’t work as it is intended to.  No doubt some of you reading this have experience with this kind of machinery and already knew what this piece was.  And now that I have had experience, I’ll know to look for it in the future (I’m trying again Saturday). But it did cost me a frustrating 3 hours prepping and cleaning, so my experience came at a cost.

Why didn’t I just ask my friend?  My father-in-law and son were with me, and I asked both of them.  But they don’t have the expertise to fix this kind of sprayer. Why didn’t I just ask my friend who knows his sprayer inside and out?  He could have helped me.

So it is with your insurance.  Why not ask your friends here at Venture Insurance Group?  I will use Medicare as an example, but this applies to all insurance.  Medicare provides tools to help you pick a plan, change plans, make sure your doctors are in network and that your drugs are covered.  Medicare lists every form you need right online. And every year in the fall they send you an encyclopedia of information in the mail so you have all (ALL – *whew*) of the information you need.  Yet so often when I speak with people it is because they are already suffering from being in the wrong plan.  And their suffering is more than simply the 3 wasted hours I spend on the sprayer.

They have asked their friends and their neighbors.  But just as my father-in-law and son were well-meaning, they are not likely to be experts in the matter.  Ask your friends at Venture Insurance Group instead. My mistake was to overlook a small piece of equipment no bigger than my pinkie finger.  It looked insignificant. Anyone could have missed it. And the truth is, the sprayer still worked. It still spit out paint. The paint was just a mess and completely useless.  

When you are trying to compare insurance options, you will not know if you have missed some small piece of the puzzle until it is too late.  When you need it, you want your plan to cover you in the full, consistent, smooth manner it was designed to do.

We want to hear your story.  Ask your friends here at Venture Insurance Group.  We’re obsessed with insurance so you don’t have to be.

 

Have You Ever Looked at a Hospital’s Ceilings?

Posted by: Jonathan Tate, Vice-President of Sales

The last time you were at a hospital, did you notice the ceilings?  Fortunately, most times I have been at the hospital I have been visiting a friend or walking to get a test done.  I see the walls, the doors, the decorations, and the staff.  But I recently was there for a minor knee surgery and saw the hospital from a perspective that’s new to me.

I was flat on my back on a gurney as I was wheeled from pre-op to the operating room and then to post-op afterward.  The whole time my only view was that of the hospital ceiling tile. A lot can go through a person’s mind when all you can see is hospital ceiling tile.  

No procedure is without risk.  Did I remember to bring my crutches?  Did I get everything ready at home? There are a lot of unknowns.

How much is this procedure going to cost me?  What is my deductible? Coinsurance? Is this going to be covered?  The best time to prepare the answers to these questions is when you develop your health plan or during your annual review.  Whether it’s health insurance or Medicare, Venture Insurance knows ways to package plans together so that one picks up where the other one ends.  Often, layering policies this way means you get the best of both policies. Can packaging two (or more) policies together offer richer coverage and lower premium?  YES!

It’s worthwhile to learn the possibilities to see if packaging plans together is a good strategy for you.  Whether you have an individual health plan, a health plan through work, or Medicare, please contact me and ask what packages are available for you.  Let us help you find your answers now so that you’re not wondering about the answers while looking at a hospital ceiling.