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Old 02-22-2009, 05:10 PM   #15
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When my wife and I full-timed several years ago, we selected Texas as our "home" State. They had no income tax, and they had a high risk insurance pool. If you applied for and were turned down by 2 different companies, you qualified for the pool. Out of the pool, the insurers had to take their fare share of high risk people and could only charge you 20% more than the average person. This proved to save us a lot of money over private insurance.
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Old 02-23-2009, 06:29 AM   #16
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Thanks for the continuing advise. I have checked the cost of Cobra and it would be very expensive. I work for a school district and have a "cadillac" insurance coverage. The downside is it is a very expensive policy and Cobra would be more than we could afford. I have looked at the cost of catostrophic coverage, and that is probably the way we will go. It's just so great to hear what others have experienced. To the person who wrote about Texas having a high risk insurance pool. How long do you have to be a resident of Texas to be eligible for this pool? Thanks again for all the help!!!
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Old 02-23-2009, 01:41 PM   #17
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First of all COBRA only has to be offered if the company has 20 or more company employees, and the cost to you would be the total cost of your policy plus up to 2% admin fee (if the employeer wants to charge you)... COBRA is offered for 18 months in most cases, but could be extended up to 36 months. If you have health issues, you should exhaust your COBRA and then you would be qualified for HIPPA,(very costly, but all pre-ex is covered) as long as you go directly from a group plan to an individual health plan. If you have health issues DO NOT take a temporary (sometimes called a short option)health issurance policy, this will DQ you from HIPPA.

Now, BC/BS will have the largest network and will be honored in more places. If you get service in a state that's not your "home state" make sure that the doctor's office is in that state's BC/BS network and files the claim(s) with BC/BS of that state. Then that BC/BS will pay the claim and then file with your "home state" BC/BS. That way you will be treated as if you are in network...(for the PPO plans).
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Old 02-23-2009, 02:31 PM   #18
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I was a resident by getting a mail forwarding service and drivers license, total of 3 days. Run a internet search fro Texas and high risk health insurance pool. You should be able to find info.
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Old 02-23-2009, 02:33 PM   #19
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Here is a link

http://www.txhealthpool.com/eligibil.html
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Old 02-23-2009, 05:11 PM   #20
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Jim you are correct --that is my portion of the monthly premium -- sorry about that. Also sorry about the time delay in answering your question -- my right hand was crushed in an accident and I can only type with my left hand and two fingers on the right hand.
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Old 02-23-2009, 11:35 PM   #21
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I am a 20 year Army retiree. The military no longer provides free medical or dental care for retirees unless it is emergency, and that is questionable. Great military benefits eh?
Any insurance policies that I have pay me cash back (not Dr's or hospitals) if I have an accident, cancer, or hospitalized.

I am too young for Social Security and Medicare.
My insurance coverage since 1991 has be the Veterans Administration (VA). They have hospitals in every state and numerous clinics. My Rx meds are $8 ea for 30 day supply. I have nothing but praise for the treatment I have received at 5 different hospitals in CA and NV.

If you're a veteran, I encourage you to register and get your VA Medical card and a Primary care Doctor.
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Old 04-11-2009, 09:56 PM   #22
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I retired five years ago at age 50 and extensively researched health insurance at that time. We settled on a high deductable program so that we would qualify for the HSA tax deduction. I ran through our typical medical bills and concluded that you could pay a high insurance premium and have very little out of pocket or a low premium and pay most bills yourself. Either way was a wash. Our high deductable, catastrophic coverage costs us about $400 per month for a family of four in Washington state. The HSA tax deduction is an a deduction to get to AGI and not an itemized deduction, so it is always available and there isn't a phase out if you have high income. I'd recommend that you consider the HSA option if you are healthy.
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Old 04-12-2009, 01:24 AM   #23
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Consider a HSA (health savings account) and a plan with a high deductible if you are generally healthy. The HSA contributions are cumulative and tax deductible. You can use the HSA for all medical needs glasses,dental,etc. Most plans have some sort of annuity for the first year to offset the deductible while it is building in you're HSA. My wife has her HSA and Insurance through Golden Rule and it is a fee for service type insurance. Fee For Service policies are generally more expensive but you can go when and where needed usually without having to stay within a network or having to have a primary care physician to go through. Shop around as this is potentially a long term decision. Make sure you can not be singled out for rate increase or cannot be dropped unless you're whole class is dropped.
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Old 04-12-2009, 10:48 AM   #24
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We were residents of CA and after retirement elected to get the heck out of that state. We did a lot of research and selected South Dakota as our domicile after retirement. Establiishing our address, changing licenses, vehicle registrations, and getting auto and RV insurance took one morning. In fact we spent less than 30 minutes to get licenses and registration and we walked out of the court house with licenses and license plates in hand. Car and RV ins. took longer maybe an hour. Getting Med Ins. took the longest...days. The biggest issue with health ins. was researching the various companies and wide selection of options offered by the companies.

Like many already stated, COBRA was available at over $800 per month for 18 months and I believe I could have gotton an extension for an additional 18 months... providing I wanted to pay the big bucks. Our research showed my wife and I could get our own insurance similar to our full coverage "platinum level" COBRA plan for about $600 per month and we could get bare bones ins. for as little as $200 per month.

Our research also showed insurance rates are significantly different from state to state and states with larger populations tend to have lower ins. rates. BC/BS in CA was very economical. FUll coverage, very low deductible for less than $300 per month. Changing domicile we focused on states w/o state income taxes and TX and SD. were at the top of the list. TX had slightly lower health ins costs than SD.

Investigating ins. companies shows within ins. company and plan there is a a huge menu of options...high deductibles, hospital only packages, co-ins percentages like 80/20 100/0, ect, co-payment options, out patient services, etc.. These options all directly impact monthly fees.

We selected a high deductible plan 80/20 plan that included coverage for outpatient services and did not have any doctor visit "co-pay" or perscription features. Hence, Dr. visits for things like flu, shots, ect. and perscriptions are payed out of pocket and are applied towards the annual deductible. This is a major med. plan with out patient coverage. The ins co. we selected also has a very large nationwide network of "in network" providers. To date we have found "in network" providers where we needed them from north to south and east to west. We use the "in network" providers as we get a huge break on the cost we pay out of pocket. Our out of pocket cost we pay when using "in network" providers is frequently well under 50% of the "list" price. Likewise we get a huge out of pocket cost reduction for perscriptions when using the "in network" providers.

WIth the high deductable 80/20 plan we selected we pay up to 20% of the first $15K of expenses and in addition we selected a $5K per year deductible. So, combined, the max annaul out of pocket expense for each of us is about $8K per year and the ins covers up to $5M life time costs. This ins is costing us in the range of $400 per month. For about $250 per month we could have had a plan that did not include any "outpatient" coverage, but we felt in our conditions, should we need med. care, most likely it would be "out patient" care and the additiional $150 per month seemed to be a good gamble. We can reduce are coverage at any time with a simple phone call. To increase coverage we would need a physical and approval. Bad news is... as we get older the monthly fees go up and they have climbed about $20 per month per year.

You will find numerous plans providing nation wide coverage and you can pay as much, or as little, as you wish. Given we are retired and have a fixed income we have to smartly manage our budget. So far we can just barely afford health ins.. To date our monthly Med. Ins. is costing us almost as much as it does for our monthly food bill. So Mr. Obama, do we eat, or do we pay for insurance??? We are still several years from Medicare/Medicaid and AARP only offers suplemental medicare packages to cover what Medicare/medicaid don't pay. If our ins. bill goes up significantly, which could happen as we get older, then we may have to face a tough decision.

I'm still waiting for our new president to fix the ins. and medical costs so we can actually afford reasonable coverage.

Bottom line, go for it. Enjoy retirement, check out some of the links provided in prior posts, and do the research. I hope this helps.
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Old 04-12-2009, 06:48 PM   #25
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It is my understanding that with COBRA, you pay both sides of the charge plus a 20% administration fee.
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Old 04-12-2009, 07:57 PM   #26
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Regarding cobra I do not believe it is cost plus 15% closer to %5, if charged. Re different states costs..It is true different states have different rates, rules regarding pre existing conditions and more importantly what has or does not have to be covered..old rule of thumb..if it costs more it probably covers more. Re HSA..one reason to get an HSA is they have to by law provide you with preventive care outside of the deductible, IE it's free. So with an HSA you get a gen physical and minor blood work free every year..most other high deductible plans will not do this..
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Old 06-09-2009, 12:26 AM   #27
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health insurance

try atena for major medical , 350/month for 5,000 deductible for one person age 63, less expensive for younger person...also b/c b/s are offering some new plans. faye
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:00 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadking View Post
I'm still waiting for our new president to fix the ins. and medical costs so we can actually afford reasonable coverage.
You're waiting for WHAT!!!! You'd better pray that his health insurance plans are shot down.... If he gets what he wants then you'll be paying so much in taxes and fees (got to pay for the freebee some how) that you'll only be RVing in your back yard....That is if you can even afford to keep your RV.
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