Retiring can be tricky when it comes to health insurance. If you have group coverage through your employer, then dropping that coverage may also leave the rest of your family uninsured.
- Buying Health Insurance After 55 – If you need to purchase individual health insurance after you are 55 years old, you should be aware that insurance companies will base the premiums on the age of the oldest family member, thus you’re going to pay higher premiums. The best way to buy insurance is to put it in the name of the younger spouse; when the older spouse reaches 65 and applies for Medicare, the younger spouse will still be covered.
- High Deductible Plans – Health insurance plans with a high deductible will have lower premiums so that you have less coming out of your pocket. The best time to buy one of these plans is before you retire. You will still have your employer-sponsored insurance for the time being, and it won’t be as difficult to quality for health insurance if you already have a policy.
- State High Risk Insurance – If you have been denied insurance, or if the premiums are simply too high because of your age, you might want to think of purchasing your insurance through state sponsored high-risk insurance pools.
If you are considered uninsurable and are not old enough to qualify for Medicare, there are a few options open to you. There are state programs that can assist you with medical bills, plus there are some programs in place for discount prescription medications. In addition, many clinics offer a sliding scale for their services to help make healthcare more affordable for people that do not have health insurance.
Being without health insurance when you are older is unquestionably risky. Not only can medical bills stack up quickly, but also you are more likely to have health problems as you age. For those that have no options open to them for health insurance, it might be a good idea to continue working until you are old enough to qualify for Medicare.