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How One Insurance Agency’s Family-Oriented Approach Thrives

Written by: PeopleKeep Team
March 27, 2015 at 12:00 PM

Sunday, March 29 is National Mom and Pop Business Owners Day. Zane Benefits will mark the occasion by recognizing our valuable partners who support small businesses everyday. Gary Adkins’ mission is helping Mom and Pop Business Owners succeed. 

How does he do it? Read Mr. Adkins story.

A Family Member in Need Spawns an Individual Focus

To say that Mr. Adkins is a seasoned professional in the individual health insurance market would be an understatement. Mr. Adkins prides himself on establishing a family-oriented business. Long before the Affordable Care Act was passed, his focus on the individual market began while helping out one of his family members. SelectPointeLogoFINAL 

His father-in-law ran a successful small business, but was experiencing exponential increases in his group health insurance plan. Mr. Adkins wanted to help, so after much research discovered a provision in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) that offered an alternative solution.

The law stated that, effective 2006, people became HIPAA-eligible and were guaranteed the right to buy individual insurance coverage if they met certain criteria, including being removed from an employer-sponsored group plan.

This was perfect. Now employees with pre-existing conditions became eligible under a special enrollment period and could not be denied coverage.

“And so I showed [employees] how we can flip everybody to individual plans, and the one or two people driving rates way up...pay them more money and let them pay their own [insurance]. And that’s how it started on a taxable basis.”

After saving the business 70 percent he thought, “Well, there could be something to this.”

The Same Individual Insurance Solution: Now Tax-Free with ZaneHealth

Mr. Adkins was armed with a powerful tool. Employees could now be reimbursed for their health insurance costs and the business could save money.

“I just didn’t understand how to do it in a more compliant way.” What came next sweetened the deal.

With the help of a fellow agent, Mr. Adkins was introduced to Zane Benefits. He had found that with a formal reimbursement plan, not only is he saving small businesses money, but saving employees even more with a tax incentive.  

Individual Health Insurance: A Continued Family-Oriented Solution

Select Pointe helps a wide range of small businesses including veterinary offices, private schools, medical practices, and CPAs, to name a few. Among the many things Mr. Adkins loves about providing these businesses with individual health insurance is the community reach that the product offers.  

“You get to know every person in the company - from the top to the bottom. You become a conversation amongst that business, and if you service them all well, they get such positive feedback that they tell their friends and then other people.”

Spreading the word to friends and family is the trust and connection that individual health insurance provides and one that group health insurance just doesn't allow. And of course, there is more to it.

The savings.

While moving a local Christian school from a group to individual insurance, he helped them save $300,000 a year when combining the reduction of the school’s premium, the reduction of the employee’s premium, the reduction of the deductible, and the reduction of out-of-pocket maximums.  

That is a huge amount of money.

What Is The Secret to a Successful Insurance Agency?   

What began with a conversation with his father-in-law, Mr. Adkins looks ahead toward the future and continues to keep family in mind. Mr. Adkins hopes to leave, not only the agency with his son Gable, but also his business perspective.

“Nothing replaces a personal touch. If we can go out there to small businesses - that are out there doing well or that are struggling - we can help them improve their bottom line by reducing costs and providing better service.”

His philosophy has worked. Treat people like they are important, like they are family. This involves establishing tailored solutions to handle specific problems.

“One of the biggest things that our employers love about us is that we treat their employees as though they are just as important as the owner of the business.”

Key Takeaways from Mr. Adkin's Story

  • Mr. Adkins first experience moving a small business from group to individual health insurance began with his father-in-law and yielded approximately 70% savings for the company.

  • Selling individual health insurance falls in line with Mr. Adkins family-oriented agency. Individual insurance offers a connection to the community and word-of-mouth opportunities to friends and family that group health insurance just doesn't allow.

  • Mr. Adkins loves helping clients save money. He helped save a private school approximately $300,000 a year when combining the reduction of the school’s premium, the reduction of the employee’s premium, the reduction of the deductible, and the maximum out of pocket expenses.  

  • By using ZaneHealth, Mr. Adkins offers small businesses a customizable and compliant tax-free premium reimbursement solution that helps the employer save money, while keeping employees happy.

Gary Adkins is the head of Select Pointe, an independent brokerage firm based in Brentwood, Tennessee. Working along with his son Gable, the agency focuses on providing health coverage and retirement planning education needed for small business success. Learn more about his agency at www.selectpointe.com.

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Topics: Individual Health Insurance, Partner Case Study