New Partnership Helps Minnesota Farmers Tackle Rising Medical Expenses

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Steve Kielman, VP of Microbusiness Sales for Total Administrative Services Corporation (TASC), highlights a new partnership with 40 Square Cooperative Solutions to help farmers in Minnesota save on their medical expense.

Healthcare costs continue to skyrocket and remain a significant expense for small farming businesses in Minnesota. A new partnership between TASC, a nation-wide, third-party benefits administrator, and 40 Square Cooperative Solutions (40 Square) helps member farmers and small agribusinesses access comprehensive health coverage and write off their premiums and out-of-pocket medical expense, potentially netting them an average additional savings of $5,500 each year.

Legislative changes make healthcare more affordable for farmers; TASC partnership makes it easy to meet requirements

Legislative changes to Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangements (MEWA) give farmers a chance for larger collective bargaining power. 40 Square takes advantage of these changes to offer self-funded health plan benefits to members through use of a cooperative. However, according to federal law, 40 Square must require potential members to have a minimum of one “Common Law” employee (someone to whom they provide a W-2; this can be a part-time employee and spouses qualify) and follow strict regulations.

Understanding that legally hiring a common law employee can be a confusing process, the 40 Square Board of Directors decided to enter into a strategic partnership with TASC after learning about their AgriPlan and BizPlan services.

TASC makes it easy for cooperative members to add their spouse as a legal employee and tap into the co-op’s self-funded health plan benefits through their AgriPlan and BizPlan Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) products.

Health Reimbursement Arrangements save farmers thousands on taxes each year

HRAs are an IRS-approved, tax-advantaged health benefit that reimburses employees for qualified out-of-pocket medical expenses. These programs have been utilized for decades and are a popular way for small business owners to save thousands of dollars on their taxes annually. They require a farmer to legally hire their spouse and provide them an employee benefit to pay for their healthcare expenses.

According to Char Vrieze, executive director of 40 Square, “Partnering with TASC is a natural fit. Our cooperative’s aim is to help our hard-working farmers attain affordable health coverage as much as possible, and finding a company that helps farmers save money on their healthcare expenses perfectly aligns with our mission.”

Seminars and webinars provide partnership overview

TASC and 40 Square will be holding a number of in-person seminars and live webinars to show how farmers can reduce medical costs and how tax professionals can benefit from this new partnership. A schedule of upcoming events can be found at

About TASC
TASC is an award-winning, nationwide, third-party benefits administrator of tax-advantaged health benefits plans. It offers comprehensive benefits services to companies ranging in size from one employee to thousands. Exceptional new product development, innovative tools, and transparent service have put TASC at the forefront of third-party benefits administration. Their Microbusiness umbrella provides small business owners with a range of money-saving programs and assistance and includes the popular AgriPlan and BizPlan (Section 105 HRAs).

Steve Kielman
TASC VP of Microbusiness
Phone: 800-422-4661 Ext. 8873
e-mail: or

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