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Medical insurance
Old 09-27-2017, 05:05 AM
 
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For those of you who retired before you were medicare eligible what did you do about insurance? I hope to join this board in two years any advice or lessons learned from your experience are welcome. TIA


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Old 09-27-2017, 06:55 AM
 
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I retired early at the end of last school year. Right now Iím on COBRA because it was cheaper for better coverage. When that runs out or if it goes up before the end of the 18 month period, I will go on the insurance through the state retirement system. Either way itís expensive, but not much you can do about it. Iím just happy that I can afford to pay it and the rest of my bills.
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Old 09-27-2017, 07:53 AM
 
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I retired at age 60 and have been covered by hubs employer plan. However...he is also retiring in February 2018. After that I will be covered by my states public employees health plan which covers retired teachers, firemen and policemen. Its a huge block of retirees so they have good negotiating power for better coverage for less $ and we will probably never have a company decide that they are going to pull out of our plan like many other insurance plans. These factors are important to consider when looking at medical coverage. See if your state offers some thing similar. Good luck.
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Old 09-27-2017, 08:30 AM
 
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I can COBRA through my school district...but I pay the full cost. It is more than half my pension for me and dh. Can't wait till we are eligible for Medicare next year!

Be sure you can manage that expense before you retire. It is the only significant additional expense we had when I retired. We are able to do it, but there isn't much in the way of "fun money" in our budget...and we are completely debt free. In the next two years, our finances will improve significantly between Medicare and SS.
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Old 09-27-2017, 10:13 AM
 
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One thing that I have learned is that the plans you are counting on can be taken away in the bat of an eye! The only general advice I would give is to NOT retire too much before you are Medicare qualified. If you are 55 and hoping everything will stay the same, you may be in for a rude awakening.

Husbands lose their jobs and with it health insurance. Age discrimination is alive and well and the big guys know how to get rid of their older employees without a legal backlash.

Spouses who hold the health coverage can die.

Companies can go out of business.

Companies can sign on with a very inferior health care policy.

The list could go on and on.

I would only count on what you currently have for about two years. I hate to seem so negative, but this is a really important topic, and you have to be in tune with what is going on around you.

Ohio's STRS is preparing its retirees with the reality that they will NOT be offering health care in the next few years. Not the end of the world when you are 65, but they also did away with the subsidy. So, if I was carefully balancing my budget hoping to have that subsidy, I would be in for a shock.


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Old 09-27-2017, 10:37 AM
 
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My husband works for the school district and our daughter and I are carried by him. He is retiring in December though. She is adopted and mentally ill so may be able to get expanded Medicaid (I need to get busy). I am not sure how we are going to cover me yet so I will be following your post.

Nancy
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Health Insurance
Old 09-27-2017, 01:27 PM
 
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I retired at 58. At the time, I had enough accumulated sick leave (that can be converted to $) with the district to last about 3 years. After that, I was going to use money from a 401K until Medicare age.

Life does change. I continued to carry our adult disabled daughter until this month (she was approved for Soc Sec Disability this month) and will be on Medicaid. Because she was on mine for so long after retiring (our fault - we dragged our feet - Soc Sec is SO intimidating), my accumulated sick leave $ depleted far more quickly than anticipated and will be gone by Nov.

I am still not tapping into the 401K until originally determined. We have some other savings that we will deplete first.

Insurance is a BIGGIE. Be confident about it before retiring. Talking to your financial advisor would be beneficial too.
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Old 09-27-2017, 02:47 PM
 
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My state's retirement system subsidizes our health insurance. I pay 20% of the premium, and they pay the rest. Of course, there are copays and a deductible, but it's not too bad.

What's going on in Ohio is frightening! My state passed a law a few years ago requiring teachers to contribute part of their salary if they want health insurance in the future, so hopefully that will stave off any cuts.
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Old 09-27-2017, 03:08 PM
 
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I have insurance through my state's retirement system. I pay some for it but no more than I did for my insurance through my district when I worked. My husband is another story. He always got his insurance through me. We can pay for him to get insurance through my retirement program but it is very expensive. He is in really good health and purchased private individual insurance for now. It does have a really high deductable. In a few years we plan to have him go on my insurance. We budgeted for it.

Something of interest- our financial advisor told us not count on that when we reach medicare age for our health insurance overall expense to reduce too much. He said many people assume that. According to him, by the time we pay for our supplemental insurance, we won't be ahead that much.
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Insurance
Old 09-27-2017, 03:22 PM
 
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I get insurance through the school district until I'm 65, then I will get Medicare and buy my supplemental through the teacher retirement system. Right now, because I picked the insurance coverage with the most restricted plan, the district is paying. It's good insurance, but I am limited in the doctors I can see.
Kathy


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Old 09-27-2017, 06:43 PM
 
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Thanks for all the info. I need to ask about COBRA costs. I should only need it about 18 months before Medicare. I'm in a private school with good benefits but doubt that I qualify for any state programs since I'm not a public school teacher.
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