eBay "Sold" On Power Seller Insurance Deal

January 7, 2003 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - Online auction house eBay will begin offering health care coverage to people who make a living selling goods on the bidding Web site, according to a CNET News.com story.

The plan will provide medical, dental and pharmaceutical coverage to its “power sellers,” people who average at least $1,000 in sales per month, and could include as many as 40,000 individuals, according to eBay spokesman Kevin Pursglove.

Pursglove said eBay did not yet know how many sellers had signed up for insurance.   Prices and availability for coverage vary depending on characteristics of the sellers and their location.

Previous attempts to set up health care coverage in October hits snags as eBay had difficultly finding an insurance company to create the plan for its “power sellers.” At the time, eBay said the problem dealt with this unique group not being considered “a traditional group as defined by health care providers.   Some are self-proprietorships; others have employees. Some sell x number of dollars per month; others have another amount. There is also the question of what state they’re in. Not all carriers provide it in all states.”

In addition, eBay said it is exploring other possible benefits to offer its “power sellers,” including car or rental insurance, but reports not having any definitive plans or benefit offerings at this time.