4 options for Health Insurance for Early Retirees

Is this you?

  • You are not yet 65 years old.
  • You are retiring early.
  • You need health insurance.

If it is, congratulations!

The old standby that people retire when they turn 65 years of age no longer holds true. For one reason or another, people are hanging up their work boots well before they reach that age when Medicare kicks in.

What is the problem then? The problem is when you quit working, you gave up health benefits from your employer. But because you have not yet reached the age of 65, you are too young to qualify for Medicare and you need insurance to cover your medical costs until you hit 65. Finding health insurance for early retires is job No. 1.

It is possible that you have been forced into retirement, and your need for health insurance coverage is even more dire because you may need it quickly. On the flip side of this, you may have been offered an early retirement package that includes health care. Consider yourself lucky if this is the case.

Other Coverage Scenarios

There are standard answers to the question of how early retires can get medical coverage. If your spouse or partner has medical insurance, you can move your coverage needs to that policy. This is the best possible scenario for many people but not a reality for single folks or those whose partners don’t work or do not have insurance from a job. They may have been depending on you for their own health insurance needs.

Another option is to extend your employer’s insurance benefits through COBRA for 18 months, although that is expensive.

The cost of COBRA averages from $400 to $700 per person per month. If you are going to depend on COBRA to cover health care for your family, you must figure your costs based on the number of people the coverage is designed to protect. More on that is in the COBRA section below.

4 Options for Health Insurance for Early Retirees

Health benefits are a big consideration when you leave a job and this is especially true of older Americans…

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