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- Most Americans over the age of 65 are eligible for Medicare
- You need to factor in the cost of prescriptions, co-pay and premiums into your budget
- Pre-existing health issues play a role in health insurance coverage
You can get health insurance if you are retired. Which type of coverage you can get depends on several factors.
Your personal needs, your age and if you have any underlying health issues can all effect what type of coverage is available to you.
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What are some things to consider before retiring?
Medicare health insurance does not become available until you are 65. If you’re retiring earlier than this, you will need to consider the extra expense of individual health insurance.
Deductibles, co-insurance, co-pays and the cost of prescriptions all should be added into your budget when planning retirement.
Social Security (if it’s still around) won’t start until you’ve turned 62, so you also need to set aside enough money to live on every year and try to prepare for the possibility of unplanned emergencies.
What do I do for health insurance when I retire?
If you’ve always had health insurance through your employer, you’ll want to make sure you have coverage when you retire.
The first thing you should do when you’ve decided to retire is to see if your health insurance plan will allow you to continue with the plan.
With some group insurance policies, if you’ve worked at a company for long enough, you’re considered a vested employee. This means you could still receive health insurance benefits after retirement.
Your employer should have all related material to help you plan for your retirement and what health insurance benefits you will receive after so many years of service.
Read all the literature and attend workshops if you can to make sure you have a full understanding of your future benefits.
Not every employer has health insurance that will follow you through retirement. Many people who retire before 65 have to pick up health insurance from private company so its important to do your research beforehand.
Know what you need for coverage and how much you’re willing to pay per month for a premium. It’s also a good idea to understand how much you can afford for co-pays and deductibles.
Once you have your individual information, shop around. Look online, call insurance agents.
Find out what they can do for you and see if you can find a flexible plan that meets your budget and your health needs.
What is Medicare?
Medicare is a healthcare program provided by the U.S. government. It’s meant to be utilized by those individuals who are 65 + and are in need of health insurance.
It also covers those people under 65 who suffer from a permanent disability of some kind. There are some basic requirements for those trying to receive Medicare health insurance.
One must be at least 65 or older and the applicant must be a citizen of the U.S. If they are not a natural born citizen, they would have to have been a legal resident for five years in a row and have paid Medicare for ten years before receiving it themselves.
Those who do qualify for Medicare can benefit from the health insurance. In order to stay insured by Medicare, each individual will need to pay a premium every month.
Can I get health insurance through an association or union?
If you are eligible to join a professional association or union then you may reap the rewards of their benefits as well.
The group rates for associations and unions tend to be low and they often have several options for individual health insurance plans.
For those who are not part of an association or union, you may be eligible to join one. You can find plenty of associations and unions by doing a little research online.
Make sure to read over any material involving benefits and annual membership fees before signing on. One such organization is AARP.
While getting yourself insured is a top priority, you want to make sure you’re getting the best deal. Consider the annual membership fee, the amount of coverage and the premiums for these group insurance rates.
You don’t want to find great insurance, but pay an obnoxiously high annual membership fee to receive it.
Can I still get health insurance if I’m retired and have a pre-existing health issue?
If you’re retired and are not old enough to go on Medicare, finding a health insurance company to work with you can be challenging.
This is especially the case for those who have pre-existing health issues. Coverage for the elderly can be limited even if they are in tiptop shape. Health insurance companies assess individuals on their risk of needing a large sum of money towards health bills.
For those whom are considered high-risk, such as those who have an illness, most health insurance companies will turn them down, knowing they will pay more out than receive in.
That being said, it’s important to do your research. Many states out there do not allow health insurance companies to discriminate when offering insurance.
Research your state’s policies when it comes to high-risk individuals.
Find out what your rights are and start researching companies. While it can be challenging to find coverage when you have an illness and are retiring, it’s not impossible.
It never hurts to ask an insurance agent if you’re not finding the information you’re looking for online. Put your best foot forward and start the search for health insurance well before your final day of work.
Even one day uninsured can be too much without health insurance, so to avoid a gap in coverage make sure to have a list of potential health insurance plans ready well before your retirement party.
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