Understanding Your Company’s Benefits

Whether you’ve been with your company for a long time or are going in to a new one and starting a new career, it’s important that you look through the benefits of your company carefully.  Just by taking a little extra time to look over the overview of Massachusetts worker’s comp laws you can end up saving yourself a great deal of time, should you ever need to call upon your benefits for something.

One of the biggest downfalls many people face is not having looked through their insurance policy’s benefits carefully enough when they first signed up.  Insurance is something most people will use for the duration of their career so it’s vital that you understand the information right from the start.

Not understand how your insurance benefits work can affect you quite significantly later on if anything goes wrong.  If you don’t understand the policy well enough you could find yourself in the position of spending a lot of money when you have to submit a claim simply because you didn’t take the time to look through the information.  Make sure you understand how much your deductible is (if you have one), what your insurance policy covers, and which doctors or hospitals are covered under your policy.

By stepping outside of the bounds of your insurance policy you could be faced with dropping hundreds if not thousands of dollars that could have been afforded had you checked beforehand.

Another extremely important benefit that you should review very carefully with your company is any kind of retirement savings plan or your 401(k).  In general, most of them are relatively very similar but each company will have a different set of standards or rules that much be adhered to when it comes to these savings plans and if you aren’t aware of them, you could waste money.

Does your company match deductions?  This is important to know and you should know how much they’re willing to match or if it’s eventually capped.  Many employers will only match a certain amount for the first part of your career before increasing it, so make sure you’re getting the best match bonus when you’re deducting money for your 401(k) plan.

Likewise, don’t naturally assume that the amount this new company matches is similar to your last company or another similar company.  As mentioned, every organization is slightly different and you don’t want to deduct a certain amount each time only to find out they’re only matching half of it.  Review this information carefully to know the stipulations before you start taking money out for it.

Another thing that many people should review, but often don’t, is what happens if they take it out or if they switch jobs.  Oftentimes, you will be charged a fee for withdrawing from your 401(k) earlier than is outlined in the benefits policy, so make sure you understand this so you don’t end up losing a huge chunk of it because you took it out.

Additionally, a lot of plans will automatically come with you if you switch companies.  If you don’t want it to roll over you’ll need contact the company and specifically tell them this before it moves over.  If it’s already been done and you take it out, you’re going to be faced with paying the aforementioned fees.

Knowing the benefits and rules of your company or organization is extremely important because you can end up losing quite a bit of money if you don’t follow the outlines carefully.  It only takes a few extra hours of looking through and understanding everything and it will really pay off in the end.


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Contribution made by Becky W.

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