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EMPLOYEE BENEFITS MARKET ‘IS SET TO EXPAND’

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EMPLOYEE BENEFITS MARKET ‘IS SET TO EXPAND’
  • More than four out of five Employee Benefits Consultants expect to grow or maintain their current levels of business
  • But Brexit and GDPR are major challenges as consultants tackle a growing list of issues                                                                                                                                    

Employee benefit consultants are forecasting market growth despite concerns about major challenges from the introduction of new data regulations and the impact of Brexit, new research1 from MetLife Employee Benefits shows.

Its independent nationwide study found more than two out of five consultants (42%) expect their businesses to grow over the next year and another 41% believe they will at least stand still. Just 13% of those questioned fear their businesses will suffer a slowdown.

The optimism from EBCs is highlighted by figures showing 55% are planning to invest in technology while nearly two out of five (36%) are planning to recruit more staff to help address the growing list of regulatory and economic issues and challenges facing the industry.

Nearly two out of three EBCs (63%) warn that GDPR issues are a major challenge for the industry while 68% highlight the ongoing impact of preparations for the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union by March 31st 2019.

However domestic issues are an even bigger threat, according to EBCs. Around 84% warn the continuing growth of the “gig economy” threatens the provision of benefits as workplaces change while 81% point to the need to adapt benefits to an ageing workforce.

Adrian Matthews, Employee Benefits Director, MetLife UK said: “Employee benefits consultants are admirably resilient in the face of a growing list of challenges as demonstrated by their commitment to grow and maintain their businesses.

“Their optimism is well-founded given the growing engagement by employees with workplace benefits driven by the realisation that employee benefits are playing an increasingly important role in financial planning Our own research* shows growing satisfaction with benefits with 55% of staff saying they value their benefits compared with just 40% in 2015.”

However, EBCs warn that for employees to fully engage with their benefits and for employers to receive the maximum return on their investment there needs to be greater focus on communication – 83% say the value of benefits must be better explained to staff.

Consultants concede they have to do a better job too – 58% admit they should do more to outline the link between increased productivity and employee benefits to employers while 73% say the rising cost of benefits has to be better explained to employers.

The switch to greater use of digital delivery methods and data storage means more effort has to go into protecting data and reassuring staff – around 50% of EBCs believe cyber-security will be a growing issue over the next two years.

MetLife is focused on further enhancing strategic partnerships with leading brokers and Employee Benefit Consultants as it expands its business among large corporates including multi-national clients as well as SMEs.

It has generated significant momentum in the market thanks to a relentless focus on customer needs, innovative propositions, a culture of continuous improvement and a commitment to building strong partnerships and is established as the UK’s third largest Group Life provider by number of schemes it insures3 and the fourth largest Group Income provider.

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Lufthansa adds more summer holiday destinations in bet on recovery

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Lufthansa adds more summer holiday destinations in bet on recovery 1

BERLIN (Reuters) – Lufthansa is adding more holiday destinations to its summer flight schedule from Germany in anticipation of a strong rebound in bookings, it said on Thursday, betting COVID-19 vaccines and testing will soon make vacation travel possible.

Germany’s largest airline said it was planning to add around 20 new destinations from Frankfurt and 13 from Munich to locations such as the Caribbean, the Canary Islands and Greece.

COVID-19 vaccines and testing, along with strict hygiene rules at airports and on planes, will be prerequisites for travel this summer, it said.

“We expect many countries to relax travel restrictions towards the summer as more and more people have been vaccinated,” Lufthansa board member Harry Hohmeister said in a statement.

Hohmeister said the airline, which secured a 9 billion euro ($11 billion) state bailout last year, expects a sharp increase in demand once restrictions are lifted.

Concerned about more transmissible coronavirus mutations, many European Union countries have reinstated border controls in what is normally a passport-free travel zone.

“There is a great yearning for travel and we believe that the summer months will reflect this,” Hohmeister added.

In Britain, holiday bookings soared this week after the government laid out plans to gradually relax coronavirus restrictions, giving battered airlines and tour operators hope that a bumper summer could come to their rescue.

Plans for relaxing coronavirus travel restrictions have not been announced yet in Germany. Chancellor Angela Merkel is due to discuss lockdown options with the head of the regional governments next Wednesday.

Lufthansa, which said in January it was losing a million euros every two hours, is due to publish its fourth quarter results on March 4.

($1 = 0.8187 euros)

(Reporting by Riham Alkousaa and Ilona Wissenbach. Editing by Mark Potter)

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TRUiC Evaluates The Latest Additions to Registered Agents in the US

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TRUiC Evaluates The Latest Additions to Registered Agents in the US 2

The US is still the top choice for new businesses that have a global focus. That is not to say that they are all physically located there. Despite the pandemic creating challenges for startups seeking investment, many are still steaming ahead. More and more, companies from Europe and Asia dominate Amazon and other distribution chains in the US via a US registered entity that relies on a registered agent. What should you know about registered agents?

When forming an LLC, there are a few additions to registered agent services in 2021 that could be extremely helpful to ensure that you always maintain your privacy, never miss important mail, and make you aware of legal obligations that may occur without being too costly or complicated. When you are launching a startup as an entrepreneur, it is vital to decide which registered agent service as they act as a point of contact between a business and a state and will greatly benefit your small business in the long-term.

In short, a registered agent will primarily act as your business’s main channel of communication with your states’ government. A non-profit, corporation or LLC can appoint a registered agent service to receive government correspondence, compliance documents on behalf of the business, and service of process – which is arguably the most important role of a registered agent as this informs an entity or individual of an impending lawsuit against him/her or the company.

Suggested video – What is a Registered Agent by TRUiC:

Next will be a review and comparison between the features of the best online business services of 2021 to see which is the top registered agent service when forming an LLC:

Rocket Lawyer

Assisting in the formation of over 800,000 businesses, partnerships with experienced legal professionals like Rocket Lawyer makes for a great option to serve as your registered agent service, all thanks to their 100% satisfaction guarantee. Although their services cost slightly more, they can still provide a full year for free if you subscribe to their Accelerate legal service plan for $49.95/month. Additional benefits include:

  • The company is supported by Google Ventures
  • Norton Web Security Protection & Information website
  • Legal Services Pan which includes consultations with business attorneys

Incfile

Classified as high-quality registered agent services and boasting over 150,000 customers served since 200, Incfile offers lower prices and a free subscription for one year with any incorporation filing purchase. They also provide their clients with a user -friendly website, that is protected by Norton Web Security, and free information available in their Learning Centre.

Northwest Registered Agent

If industry experience and premium customer support are important to you then the following might be the best service for you. Established in 1998, Northwest Registered Agent has made a name for themselves and is one of TRUiCs’ top picks as they are known to being the most friendly LLC service available. Not only do they provide the best email/phone support, but they also locally scan every document you receive, ensuring that you will never miss paperwork and eradicating surprises.

Harbor Compliance

Whilst getting great customer support and a unique dashboard, Harbor Compliance’s registered agent services will also offer discounts to their customers who pay up-front for multiple years and service to those in multiple states. Plus:

  • Website protection by Norton and Trustwave
  • Free compliance guides and whitepapers
  • Document delivery and scanning on the same day

ZenBusiness

After careful consideration of many other registered agent services, ZenBusiness has been rated best. This small business formation service was founded in 2015 by a team of entrepreneurs who cracked the code to the barriers that others continue to face today and help their respective clients launch their businesses successfully.

Not only will the start of your enterprise go smoothly, but they will also help you stay compliant with government laws, accept service of process and other tax and legal documents, and provide you with an overall peace-of-mind so you can focus all your time and energy on running your business.

LegalZoom

Although LegalZoom is the costliest of these options, they had to be mentioned as this registered agent service has extensive experience and capabilities with an informative and North Secure Website and a broad range of business services. Boasting with a large platform of nearly 4 million customers, LegalZoom may be more convenient for you if you have other legal services operating through them as well.

Why should you designate a registered agent service for your business?

By appointing a suitable registered agent service you will be able to maintain your privacy, be alerted to legal obligations that may crop up without breaking the bank or complicating things, and these registered agent services will ensure that you never miss a beat when it comes to crucial paperwork and delivery of important documents. There really aren’t many downsides to working with an online registered agent service provider, and the penalties for not having a registered agent heavily outweigh the cost.

 

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Transatlantic startups 2021: How To Choose a US Incorporation Specialist

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Transatlantic startups 2021: How To Choose a US Incorporation Specialist 3
  • Start-ups created over 3 million jobs in the U.S. alone in the past 12 months.
  • The highest five-year survival rate for new businesses is mining, at 51.3%.

With the high rates of US startups and the pandemic-imposed inability to travel abroad to take care of business in person, company formation services have seen peak demand. Below we discuss the latest about this trend and how the market responded.

An Incorporation Specialist (which can often be referred to as a registered or statutory agent depending on your state), is a corporate entity or professional individual that voluntarily and overtly accepts to undertake personal responsibility over a plethora of legal documents and formalities on behalf of your business.

This is commonly carried out during the official filing of your business’s Articles of Organization and- as further analysed below, can provide a plethora of benefits for you and your business. Such benefits include ensuring that a sufficient level of corporate and legal compliance is always being carried out by your business’s practices, and can save you a significant amount of both time and effort. Consequently, choosing the right incorporation specialist is extremely important.

Suggested video – LLC Formation in the US:

US Start-ups: A Quick Overview

Most commonly, persons erroneously associate the word ‘start-up’ with businesses of a relatively small business size- operating with a team of maybe just 5 different employees and often involving a prolific amount of chaos and disorganisation. In fact, however, a corporation can go on to operate for several years before evolving into a larger-scale business type- a matter further analysed below.

The ‘definition’ of a start-up can encapsulate a surprisingly large number of corporation types, and businesses tend to predominantly ‘evolve’ into large-scale business modules by either: a) opening more than just one office, b) becoming acquired via an acquisition or a takeover, or c) encompassing a total revenue of over $20 million.

Despite the rather ‘loose’ definition of a start-up, the fact is that over 90% of such aforementioned companies end up going bankrupt within their first five years of operation. This is one of the key reasons that make choosing an effective incorporation specialist for your business a crucial task. A prolific, eminent incorporation specialist can provide a plethora of commercial and structural benefits, and undeniably bring in the best llc services for your business start-up.

Choosing the Right Incorporation Specialist

As briefly touched on above, choosing the right incorporation specialist can go a long way in securing both: a) peace of mind, and b) a sufficient level of legal compliance for you and your business.

In ensuring you pick the right incorporation agent for you and your business, always ensure you:

  1. a) Choose an eminent, nation-wide provider– this is particularly essential if your business operates in several states as working with a variety of different specialists can commonly yield inefficient results- due to an abundance of unnecessary paperwork and a significantly increased risk of a legal document or a potential annual renewal falling ‘through the cracks’ and being missed.
  2. b) Choose a professional service- this can go a long way in ensuring you do not have to constantly worry about having to file an update with a relevant government agency every time your contact information or office location changes- saving you a prolific amount of irreplaceable time. Additionally, by picking a professional service to represent your company, you are much more likely to see a consistent level of document filing and legal compliance and avert any legal crisis where your legal documents are not made available to you in time.
  3. c) Evaluate the service’s software– your incorporation specialist needs to offer a reliable operating software that can consistently ensure a timely and efficient transmission of your relevant legal documents is available in the format of your preference. This way, you are likely to see a holistic reduction in your business’s paperwork and significantly improve your company’s overall internal communication.

Final Take

As touched on above, your incorporation specialist can serve as a crucial part of your business. Picking the wrong service provider can lead to disastrous results- especially in relation to missed subpoenas or late annual renewals. Multiple US states should be considered and their respective benefits ought to be compared.  Given the potential risks, it is absolutely essential to ensure you accord an adequate amount of time and effort into choosing the best incorporation specialist for you and your business and consequently save a prolific amount of time and effort in the long run.

 

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