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Self-Billing vs. List-Billing Invoicing Methods

Carriers may sometimes give companies the option to be list-billed or self-billed as their invoicing method. Learn about the differences between each method here.

List Billing

List billing is the most common type of invoice that a company will receive for insurance. These invoices will list out:

Enrolled employees at the time the bill was generated.

  • The enrollments/coverage elections of each employee enrolled.
  • The premium due for each individual.
  • The total due from the company for the upcoming month.
  • This way, the company only pays what the carrier says they owe based on the costs and enrollees the carrier shows as active at the time that they create and send the bill. The carrier will also handle all of the adjustments (retroactive billing, applying credits, etc.), so all the company has to do is pay the bill.

List Billing Benefits and Drawbacks


  • Zenefits support – Zenefits will manage applications, changes, and terminations.
  • Easy monthly payment remittance.


  • Retroactive enrollments /cancelations for employees whose applications are processed after the billing date.


Self-billing is the opposite of List Billing, in that the company creates their own invoice and sends that to the carrier with payment. Self-billing is most commonly seen in Life Insurance policies. The company will receive a blank billing form with instructions from the carrier, asking:

  • Which employees should be enrolled.
  • What they should be enrolled in (coverage, and if applicable: volume amounts, dependents, etc.).
  • Costs for the elected coverage for each of the employees listed.
  • Total cost of billed coverage.

This means that the company benefits administrator is responsible for reporting any new additions, subtractions, or other changes to coverage directly to the carrier, calculating the cost of the enrollments, and submitting the enrollment data with the appropriate payment. The carrier will then adjust their records according to what is reported.

Zenefits does not support self-billing for insurance. Because the primary administrator is responsible for reporting new enrollees, enrollee coverage changes, or removing enrollees from the policy, this would need to be handled offline.

Self-Billing Benefits and Drawbacks


  • Control overbilling (enrollments, changes, terminations).
  • No need to overpay/receive credit or underpay /catch-up on premium for new hires or terminations.


  • No Zenefits support – primary administrator must manage manually.
  • A lot of manual calculations and paperwork (premium calculations, enrollment adjustments, paper forms).
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