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Respected Contributor
Posts: 4,497
Registered: ‎11-16-2011

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

[ Edited ]

@Shoesnbags wrote:

@CARMIE wrote:

@GraceCO   Good luck with that.  

 

Are you aware that you can switch back to Original Medicare, but will probably not be able to get or afford a Supplement Plan to go along with it?

 

You can switch to a different Advantage Plan during open enrollment with no problems every year, or choose to go to Original Medicare, but supplements are only available to you to purchase within 6 months of your Medicare Part B effective date. And if you want RX coverage with that, you will pay a high penalty to get it now.

 

Some insurance companies might sell you a supplement, but you will have to pay an extremely high rate to get it....if you can even find one who will.

 

You should have done your homework. It's a good thing you like your insurance, because you will have to live with it or another Advantage Plan of your choosing.


@CARMIE 

Thank you for commenting.  This is what we were told by the senior insurance specialist we consulted, and it was the reason we chose Medicare with a supplement rather than an Advantage plan.  Didn't want to get locked into an option that was basically a permanent deal.  We wanted to preserve our options at this point. 


@Shoesnbags 

 

It's not a "permanent deal"--you can switch from Medicare Advantage to a MediGap policy. If you remain in your current state, you may pay slightly higher premiums, but it may be worth it. For those who are moving out of state in retirement, they can switch to a MediGap policy, without penalty at all.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,122
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

[ Edited ]

@CARMIE wrote:

@Reiki604 wrote:

@winkk wrote:

I would get the advice of a Medicare advisor.  They don't charge anything.  They look at all the options open to you and you decide which is best.  That amount seems very high.  Since your husband worked for the government there may be other plans.

 

My advisor told me about my current insurance with BC/BS, no monthly premiums and so far I'm very happy with it.

 

Just FYI.  I have an Advantage Plan along with my Medicare.


You either have a Medicare Advantage plan or  Medicare. You can't have both. If you sign up for an advantage program you cannot go to straight Medicare. If you are on straight Medicare you can switch to an Advantage plan or purchace supplemental plans.Supplemental plans can be switched at any time. Advantage plans can only be changed from one to another during Medicare enrollment period from Oct-Dec. Part D (drug plans) can only be switched during this time also.

 


Whoa....some of what you have written is not correct.


This is what my insurance broker told me. what is incorrect? Having the inablity to change to the same coverage as I will be getting initially under Medicare with the Supplement without a penalty or ability to buy certain supplements is quite the detriment. The  determining factor in my choice was my experience in home care nursing. Medicare Advantage plans were very stingy in their approvals for home care services, while straight Medicare visits were continued as long as the client fit the criteria and medical need.


'I refuse to engage in a battle of wits with an unarmed man'.......Unknown
Valued Contributor
Posts: 977
Registered: ‎08-25-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

@I am still oxox  You’re getting a lot of well-intentioned feedback based on experience with plans in the private sector or state/local government. BUT THE RULES THAT APPLY IN THESE SECTORS DON’T NECESSARILY APPLY TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. You need to base your decision on information that you’ve obtained from OPM’s website or the official website of the FEHB plan you and your husband are enrolled in or the one(s) you’re considering transferring to in anticipation of his retirement.

 

If you decide to opt out of the FEHB program on the basis of unofficial information, you won’t be allowed to re-enroll at a later date if problems arise. The fact that you made a decision on the basis of inaccurate information isn’t an acceptable reason for allowing you to re-enroll in the FEHB program. Remember, retirees and survivor annuitants can elect to transfer to a different FEHB plan each year at Open Season, so you aren’t limited to the one your husband had at retirement. You can choose from the full spectrum of the plans participating in the FEHB program. 

 

 

 

 

Honored Contributor
Posts: 11,067
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

@Eileen in Va 

 

Thank you for the info, I was kind of alarmed that the plan we are on has no option for retires, since open season is in the Fall and he is not retiring for a year, we have plenty of time to ask all the questions we need and ave all our "ducks in a row" when he retires.

 


@Eileen in Va wrote:

@I am still oxox  You’re getting a lot of well-intentioned feedback based on experience with plans in the private sector or state/local government. BUT THE RULES THAT APPLY IN THESE SECTORS DON’T NECESSARILY APPLY TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. You need to base your decision on information that you’ve obtained from OPM’s website or the official website of the FEHB plan you and your husband are enrolled in or the one(s) you’re considering transferring to in anticipation of his retirement.

 

If you decide to opt out of the FEHB program on the basis of unofficial information, you won’t be allowed to re-enroll at a later date if problems arise. The fact that you made a decision on the basis of inaccurate information isn’t an acceptable reason for allowing you to re-enroll in the FEHB program. Remember, retirees and survivor annuitants can elect to transfer to a different FEHB plan each year at Open Season, so you aren’t limited to the one your husband had at retirement. You can choose from the full spectrum of the plans participating in the FEHB program. 

 

 

 

 


 

Stop being afraid of what could go wrong and start being positive what could go right.
Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,820
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs


@GraceCO wrote:

@Shoesnbags wrote:

@CARMIE wrote:

@GraceCO   Good luck with that.  

 

Are you aware that you can switch back to Original Medicare, but will probably not be able to get or afford a Supplement Plan to go along with it?

 

You can switch to a different Advantage Plan during open enrollment with no problems every year, or choose to go to Original Medicare, but supplements are only available to you to purchase within 6 months of your Medicare Part B effective date. And if you want RX coverage with that, you will pay a high penalty to get it now.

 

Some insurance companies might sell you a supplement, but you will have to pay an extremely high rate to get it....if you can even find one who will.

 

You should have done your homework. It's a good thing you like your insurance, because you will have to live with it or another Advantage Plan of your choosing.


@CARMIE 

Thank you for commenting.  This is what we were told by the senior insurance specialist we consulted, and it was the reason we chose Medicare with a supplement rather than an Advantage plan.  Didn't want to get locked into an option that was basically a permanent deal.  We wanted to preserve our options at this point. 


@Shoesnbags 

 

It's not a "permanent deal"--you can switch from Medicare Advantage to a MediGap policy. If you remain in your current state, you may pay slightly higher premiums, but it may be worth it. For those who are moving out of state in retirement, they can switch to a MediGap policy, without penalty at all.


@GraceCO 

We were told that the Medigap plan premiums would be more than “slightly higher”. They would be significantly higher for someone switching from an advantage plan as opposed to someone choosing a Medigap policy as a first choice when going on Medicare.  Enough of a difference that switching wouldn’t  be a good option at that point.  Please come back and let us know what you find when you attempt to make that change. 

Highlighted
Trusted Contributor
Posts: 1,427
Registered: ‎10-07-2013

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

Is this the going rate for what?  Should you shop around for what?

 

Does his health insurance also pay for you or is it just for him?  The Medicare deductions apparently are for both.

 

You need to talk to a benefits counselor at his employer.

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 5,277
Registered: ‎03-09-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

@Shoesnbags we were told the same thing about supplements.

 

Our advisor told us the only time you are absolutely guaranteed a no questions asked supplement is the very first time you are eligible to sign up for one.  Supplements are not part of the open enrollment rule and that if at some point in time you want to switch from an Advantage plan to a supplement you are subject to health related questions being asked.  If there are issues they can either deny you completely or charge you accordingly.

Respected Contributor
Posts: 2,820
Registered: ‎03-10-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

@CelticCrafter 

That's exactly what we were told by the agent who specialized in Senior insurance.

Honored Contributor
Posts: 17,234
Registered: ‎05-22-2016

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs

[ Edited ]

I'm only 63 but I'm retired. My private insurance just for myself costs over $700 monthly with a $8000 deductible. I'm looking forward to getting Medicare coverage in a couple of years because this is just too expensive.

Valued Contributor
Posts: 977
Registered: ‎08-25-2010

Re: Retirement and health insurance costs


@I am still oxox wrote:

@Eileen in Va 

 

Thank you for the info, I was kind of alarmed that the plan we are on has no option for retires, since open season is in the Fall and he is not retiring for a year, we have plenty of time to ask all the questions we need and ave all our "ducks in a row" when he retires.

 


@Eileen in Va wrote:

@I am still oxox  You’re getting a lot of well-intentioned feedback based on experience with plans in the private sector or state/local government. BUT THE RULES THAT APPLY IN THESE SECTORS DON’T NECESSARILY APPLY TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. You need to base your decision on information that you’ve obtained from OPM’s website or the official website of the FEHB plan you and your husband are enrolled in or the one(s) you’re considering transferring to in anticipation of his retirement.

 

If you decide to opt out of the FEHB program on the basis of unofficial information, you won’t be allowed to re-enroll at a later date if problems arise. The fact that you made a decision on the basis of inaccurate information isn’t an acceptable reason for allowing you to re-enroll in the FEHB program. Remember, retirees and survivor annuitants can elect to transfer to a different FEHB plan each year at Open Season, so you aren’t limited to the one your husband had at retirement. You can choose from the full spectrum of the plans participating in the FEHB program. 

 

 

 

 


 


@I am still oxox You’re welcome. Coverage is the same for employees and retirees. At Open Season, check the brochures (they’re almost all online now) for any plans you’re considering to be sure you’re basing your decision on current information. The Blue Cross rebate perk was not advertised at all. We didn’t bother checking their brochure because we knew we weren’t going to change plans. A friend told us about it and we changed to Basic on the last day of Open Season. Lesson learned!