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If you decide to retire early, you may wonder about your health insurance options. Technically, early retirement is defined as anything before the age of 65.1 If you decide to stop working before this age, there are still ways to get early retirement health insurance.
If you decide to wait until you are 65 to retire, you may be able to qualify for Medicare. Medicare is a government program designed to help citizens over 65 pay for necessary healthcare.2 It’s important to note that Aflac does not offer traditional health insurance for early retirees, but we provide supplemental coverage to complement your existing plan.
If you find yourself with expensive out-of-pocket costs after your primary health insurance has been used, supplemental insurance can help you pay for the care you need. Some of our plans pay you cash benefits (unless benefits are assigned) that you can choose how you want to use—whether it be for treatments, medication, or everyday utilities like electricity and groceries.
For example, we offer accident insurance to help you recover from an unexpected injury, critical illness insurance to aid you back to health after a life-altering illness and cancer insurance to help pay for the necessary treatments and procedures involved with a cancer diagnosis. These are just a few of the options at Aflac, so we recommend chatting with an agent to learn more about your options.
Don’t wait until it’s too late. Help cover yourself and your family with affordable coverage from Aflac.
If you have employer-sponsored health insurance, you may be able to extend it for a few extra years after early retirement. If that isn’t the case, you can still find an early retirement health insurance plan that meets your specific coverage needs.
Deciding to retire early counts as a special enrollment period, allowing you to opt into a health insurance plan outside the typical enrollment schedule.3 Health insurance for retirees fluctuates depending on the state you live in, your income, and how many dependents you have.
If you don’t have employer-sponsored health insurance, you can still get a plan through the government, your state or a private company. Let’s discuss how each one of these coverage options works.
A health insurance marketplace is a place where residents can buy health insurance through the state they live in. In some cases, you may be able to receive certain tax benefits and less expensive out-of-pocket costs depending on your income and who you are supporting.4
COBRA stands for Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act. This act helps employees receive continued health insurance benefits from their employer if they lose their job or their hours are scaled back. Usually, businesses with over 20 employees are required to honor COBRA.5 COBRA usually can extend health insurance coverage anywhere from 18 to 36 months.6
Lastly, you can always buy health insurance from a private company, separate from what is offered through the state. Usually, you may be able to get better benefits from a private health insurance company, but it can be more expensive than a state-run program.7
The cost of health insurance for early retirees varies greatly depending on the plan you choose and your specific coverage needs. Costs can be influenced by the state you live in, your income, your dependents and whether you choose a private or public health insurance plan. As noted earlier, private health insurance options may be pricier than government-run programs.
We recommend you look at each health insurance plan closely before making a decision. If you are looking for additional support and fewer out-of-pocket expenses, Aflac supplemental insurance can make all the difference in getting you and your family the coverage you deserve.
If you’re interested in life insurance options for seniors, we provide Final Expense Whole Life Insurance. This insurance plan is meant to help older adults and their loved ones pay for end-of-life costs, so that money doesn’t have to be the main focus for you and your family. Explore our variety of health and life insurance products to discover better support.
Explore your supplemental health insurance options.
1, 3-4 Health Care Gov - Coverage for Retirees. https://www.healthcare.gov/retirees/. Accessed July 26, 2022.
2 Medicare - What's Medicare. https://www.medicare.gov/what-medicare-covers/your-medicare-coverage-choices/whats-medicare. Accessed July 26, 2022.
5-6 Investopedia - COBRA Health Insurance Features and Coverage. Updated Mar 3, 2022. https://www.investopedia.com/articles/insurance/11/intro-cobra-health-insurance.asp. Accessed July 26, 2022.
7 Thrivent - 8 Early Retirement Health Insurance Options. Updated Jun 9, 2022. https://www.thrivent.com/insights/financial-planning/8-early-retirement-health-insurance-options. Accessed July 26, 2022.
The content herein is provided for general informational purposes and is not provided as tax, legal, health or financial advice for any person or for any specific situation. Employers, employees and other individuals should contact their own advisers about their situations. For complete details, including availability and costs of Aflac insurance, please contact your local Aflac agent.
Aflac insurance coverage is underwritten by Aflac. In New York, coverage underwritten by Aflac New York.
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