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Health Insurance

Brian Trommater

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I am thinking of pulling the plug on work when I turn 60 next year. So tired of the 60 mile commute into Dallas 5 days a week and working with Heavy metals. Is anybody getting health insurance through healthcare.gov? I guess its Obama care. From what I can tell if income less than $48000 for single person you get around a $850 monthly credit and would end up costing me about $270 a month.
 

chilerelleno

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And if Trump gets re-elected and he gets his wish of doing away with the unconstitutional Obamacare... Well then, it won't be there, will it.
 

chef jimmyj

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Obamacare will be history if Trump re-elected. My wife had it years ago, it was horrible... JJ
 

JC in GB

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And if Trump gets re-elected and he gets his wish of doing away with the unconstitutional Obamacare... Well then, it won't be there, will it.
He won't need to get re-elected. The new 6-3 SCOTUS will kill off the ACA effectively tossing over 20 million Americans off of health insurance and to the wolves. The ACA has flaws but we all get sick and we all need health care. Why should it be financial suicide to seek care? I have worked and had private insurance most of my adult life. I can easily see that the only thing standing between me and penury even with insurance is not being sick for too long. There is a better way and we need to implement it. And just like that, I broke my one rule for writing on this forum.
 

SmokinAl

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I never had health insurance until I turned 65, and got Medicare. If we got sick or needed an operation you just had to pay upfront, but you got about an 80% discount over what they charge the health insurance companies. Over those 65 years I saved thousands of dollars by not having health insurance, and I think it made me live a healthier life style, so as not to get sick. I never had any problems, but Judy had some female problems that required an operation, & she also had a knee replacement. Still I am way ahead. Now that I have Medicare, everything is just about free. Hope this doesn’t change with the election.
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My wife and I were forced onto Obamacare when I stopped working full time. Initially, you could get a "PPO" policy here in the DFW metroplex under Obamacare. Price and deductibles were very high unless you had little or no income. I was lucky in that respect since I had saved a substantial amount of after tax money and had little or no taxable income while I was on Obamacare. As a result, my premiums were high but affordable for me, but the deductibles were outrageous -- around $5K per year for the two of us. Also, I had to give up my doctors -- they refused to take Obamacare insurance.

In short, because of the high deductibles, my Obamacare policy paid for almost none of our medical bills.

The last couple years I was on Obamacare we were forced onto an HMO policy as opposed to a PPO. It was very hard to find a doctor to serve as primary care physician (PCP), and we needed a referral from the PCP to see specialists.

We've been on Medicare now for two years. We find it much better than Obamacare. I hope it lasts.

I'm not sure if Obamacare has gotten any better since we went to Medicare. While we had it, it was absolutely terrible insurance.
 

sandyut

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Brian Trommater Brian Trommater I am about to be in the same boat a couple years earlier. i found a local ins. broker and chatted with them for ideas. the one here does not charge - they are paid commission. But he was a wealth of info and helped us get both short and long term plans started. COBRA for us is less than open market ins. and we can carry that for the first 18 months (its about $400/pp/per month). after that my wife will be Medicare eligible but i wont. I can get almost the same plan i have now at the same university system through them directly for a little more. I am sure this varies alot by state, but if you like a healthcare system, see if they offer a plan. google will get you a lot of sellers and such and it takes a little searching to find what you need IMO. heathcare.gov does get you to the list of ins companies in your state/area tho.
 

sandyut

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took me a few tries to recall this link.. Enroll365 go that link from my employer. it helped find some options.

let me know what you find.
 

Brian Trommater

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Thanks for the idea's. I trying out if I can really afford to do this. You never know how much time you have left and I don't want to spend it all working!
 

thirdeye

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I am thinking of pulling the plug on work when I turn 60 next year. So tired of the 60 mile commute into Dallas 5 days a week and working with Heavy metals. Is anybody getting health insurance through healthcare.gov? I guess its Obama care. From what I can tell if income less than $48000 for single person you get around a $850 monthly credit and would end up costing me about $270 a month.
I guess I'll be the odd man out. I've been on ACA for 3 years and have 15 months before going on Medicare. The open enrollment starts November 1, and insurance providers lock in a rate contract with the government around October 15, then start selling policies. Once that happens ACA should live another year since funds are allocated. If Trump does come out with a better and cheaper plan it would be easy enough to transition over to that, but with 30 million people using ACA, this will take some time.

I have no issues with the plan or my insurance provider. We chose a plan which was $1500 family deductible and when Mrs~t~ moved to Medicare it went to $750 for only me. The credit was between $3400 and $3600 per month (it's based on income), so our premium was $0. We only have one ACA provider in the state (Blue Cross) which every healthcare provider accepts. So, I kept my same doc's, and same pharmacy. We did buy a rider for vision and dental. Looking at the numbers and using the cost of a non-ACA policy from Blue Cross without the ACA premium, I have saved $120,000 so far and when I move to Medicare the savings will be around $150,000.

Now, for the rest of the story. You need to plan for retirement, and part of that planning is insurance costs. The ACA only cares about your income, which you estimate based on a number of factors. Your net worth is not a factor for eligibility. So, for a starting place.... drag out your IRS 1040s and look at line 7 on the newer form, or line 37 on the older forms, 3 or 4 years of returns should be fine. This is your AGI (or MAGI) which is your adjusted gross income, or modified adjusted gross income. Everything before the AGI line counts, everything after the AGI line doesn't count as income. There is a slot limit you must fit into, around $11,000 for the minimum family income, and around $65,000 for the maximum family income. If you are between those numbers you qualify. I suspect if you are still working, your income is more than the maximum, so back out your income from your job, and see how that affects your AGI. Your goal is to remain in the slot limit. If you go under, and have a reason, you get a second chance next year. If you go over, even by $1, you loose eligibility and have to repay all the credits. Like $37,000 worth. So it's really important to make a good estimate of what your income in retirement will be. If things change, you call the ACA and modify your estimated income. A big change may affect the credit, so they apply that beginning the next month. If you look to be coming in under the minimum, you can take a one-time withdrawal from your IRA in December. Income is family income, so even if your spouse is still working and insured through work, her income counts and appears as a part of your AGI. If you or your spouse goes on Medicare, and decides to start taking Social Security.... that is also income, and may put you over the maximum limit.

Our plan was to accumulate a comfortable amount of cash before retiring, not take any distributions from IRA's (Roth IRAs are exempt), and not take Social Security because these things count as income and raise your AGI. I have some investment property that I knew I would hold (if I sold it, any profit is income) and my remaining income is all royalties, interest, dividends and capital gains on investments. You should get a general idea of any int, div, cap gains from your old 1040 forms. I track this information from monthly statements during the year, just so there are no surprises.

For starters.... Create an account at healthcare.gov then run some sample scenarios. The first few pages are general info, then you get to the sections on plans. There are Bronze, Silver, and Gold plans.... and sub-plans under each one. You basically pick a deductible and the details you want (like $5 prescriptions) and the site calculates your credit and premium cost. You can save each scenario and compare it with another. As you enter different income amounts, it shows how the credit and premium is affected. There are insurance advisors out there, we did all the groundwork first, and had a plan selected, then went in for a 2-hour meeting which cost $150. They confirmed all our information. Normally the fees are in the $400 range if the advisors start from scratch. You also want to visit with your financial advisor. We rolled over 401Ks to self directed IRA s and I converted all bonds to CD ladders, and have unloaded most of my foreign investments until this pandemic settles down. I re balanced my equities to be a hair more conservative.
 

JC in GB

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Thanks for the idea's. I trying out if I can really afford to do this. You never know how much time you have left and I don't want to spend it all working!
Amazing how much freedom that would give Americans to not have to worry about becoming homeless when you need medical care. I want to run my own business. I have for years. The problem is that working for myself I would not have enough to pay for health care therefore I must work for a larger company so they can provide health care for me. No matter how you slice it, I don't feel very free under this system.
 

thirdeye

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Amazing how much freedom that would give Americans to not have to worry about becoming homeless when you need medical care. I want to run my own business. I have for years. The problem is that working for myself I would not have enough to pay for health care therefore I must work for a larger company so they can provide health care for me. No matter how you slice it, I don't feel very free under this system.
When I went into business in the '80's, we had to get a commercial liability policy, and asked the agent about health insurance. He asked where our wives worked. One partner's wife worked for the telephone company and mine worked at the hospital, he pretty much said "stay on their policy".
 

JC in GB

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My wife and I were forced onto Obamacare when I stopped working full time. Initially, you could get a "PPO" policy here in the DFW metroplex under Obamacare. Price and deductibles were very high unless you had little or no income. I was lucky in that respect since I had saved a substantial amount of after tax money and had little or no taxable income while I was on Obamacare. As a result, my premiums were high but affordable for me, but the deductibles were outrageous -- around $5K per year for the two of us. Also, I had to give up my doctors -- they refused to take Obamacare insurance.

In short, because of the high deductibles, my Obamacare policy paid for almost none of our medical bills.

The last couple years I was on Obamacare we were forced onto an HMO policy as opposed to a PPO. It was very hard to find a doctor to serve as primary care physician (PCP), and we needed a referral from the PCP to see specialists.

We've been on Medicare now for two years. We find it much better than Obamacare. I hope it lasts.

I'm not sure if Obamacare has gotten any better since we went to Medicare. While we had it, it was absolutely terrible insurance.
The only change to the ACA has been the dismantling of the individual mandate which will doom the program anyway. The ACA was Newt Gingrich's competing market based plan with Hillary Clinton's plan in 1993. The ACA intended to turn the nation into one big risk pool with the intent of lowering costs and improving access. It was actually a decent plan from a market based perspective. Unfortunately, the republicans hated the fact that Obama was going to steal and pass their plan so they sabotaged it any way they could. Allowing states to opt out of provisions, suing over other provisions, not allowing any public option, not allowing the government to negotiate drug prices. All of these poison pills made the ACA work for less and less people.

Neither side thinks it is a success right now in part because there was no bi-partisan effort to pass a viable plan. American citizens are now caught in the middle of this nightmare where we still have no guarantees of anything other than big bills. The whole thing is a sham bleeding America while making a few select individuals obscenely wealthy.

Trump and the GOP have no plan and the democrats won't offer anything but tweaks to the ACA.

I don't get the argument about not wanting to pay for other people's insurance. When you buy into a risk pool whether private or publicly funded, you are doing just that.

I just want all American citizens to be able to get medical care when they need it. That doesn't sound like such a radical idea to me.
 

crazzycajun

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You may look into a insurance coop in your area in my area it’s atlas md. You basically pay a monthly fee similiar to a gym membership, and you go whenever you need to at no additional charge. Then depends on your situation you may choose catastrophic insurance just an idea.
 

sandyut

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Thanks for the idea's. I trying out if I can really afford to do this. You never know how much time you have left and I don't want to spend it all working!
AMEN to that! We just want to do what we want, when we want. We both work at the company and things have changed and the love it long gone (for the company not each other). we want have more time for our kids and surviving parents.


You may look into a insurance coop
I have heard of this idea as well AARP does offer insurance of all kinds and I believe.
 

Brian Trommater

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I guess I'll be the odd man out. I've been on ACA for 3 years and have 15 months before going on Medicare. The open enrollment starts November 1, and insurance providers lock in a rate contract with the government around October 15, then start selling policies. Once that happens ACA should live another year since funds are allocated. If Trump does come out with a better and cheaper plan it would be easy enough to transition over to that, but with 30 million people using ACA, this will take some time.
Thanks for taking the time for writing this. I will have to go back and read again. My plan was to combine savings with enough from IRA to cover the minimum than start collecting Social Sec at 65. I have some research to do.
 
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thirdeye

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You're welcome. I had so many friends ask questions over the last couple of years.... I had a lot of that information in a word document, so I was lucky to do a lot of cut and pasting.

If you are concentrating on insuring you are over the minimum income, the slickest way is to set up a non-retirement money market account where ever you have your IRA. Then sometime in December electronically transfer a one-time withdrawal from your IRA into that money market account. It will usually move within 24 hours. This will move a little faster is you have some cash in the IRA core account because they won't have to sell any positions. If you have them cut a check and mail it, the check must be dated in the current year, and that might take several days. One year I had a loss in my business, so on December 29th I moved IRA money in order to offset that... the transfer was posted December 31st.
 

shoebe

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Remember full retirement age in social security is based the year you where born. In my case I was born in 1956 and will reach full retirement age at 66 1/2. Before then you get less, but after you get 8 percent per year.
 

Brian Trommater

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Remember full retirement age in social security is based the year you where born. In my case I was born in 1956 and will reach full retirement age at 66 1/2. Before then you get less, but after you get 8 percent per year.
Yeah I have done the math before but would have to do again.. Seemed like if you started collecting at 62 it would take about 12 years to break even. If you live past that it goes down.
 

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