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Old 05-18-2015, 07:30 AM
 
Location: R.I.
979 posts, read 606,070 times
Reputation: 4242

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Quote:
Originally Posted by CSRSJim View Post
Thanks for all that answered my question about Medicare.
Since I paid into Medicare with payroll taxes my entire life (like most), I get Medicare Part A at age 65 at no additional cost.
Since I will be a federal retiree, I can continue to buy my FEHB health insurance in retirement. It is a good deal since I will only have to pay ~25% of the total premiums. Since I will be buying FEHB health insurance, I was wondering if buying additional coverage (Part B or Medigap) makes sense. Until I turn 65 (Medicare), I plan to buy a higher cost FEHB policy. Then when I turn 65, buying Part B and a less expensive FEHB policy to cover what Medicare Parts A & B don't pay for (similar to Medigap).

I was really wondering if others had to buy both Part B and Medigap coverage, or just Medigap.
I know two retired Feds that opted out of Medicare B and instead have standard BC/BS along with free Medicare A and they say this option provides them great coverage. Medicare B is calculated on income, so most middle of the road folks pay around $104 a month. Single coverage Standard BC/BS is around $230 a month, so for an extra $126/month you will get coverage for services that may not covered by part B but covered under Standard BC/BS. For me, I will keep standard BC/BS plus also take part B for the added protection.
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Old 05-18-2015, 08:11 AM
 
Location: Cape Elizabeth
425 posts, read 387,495 times
Reputation: 745
Quote:
Originally Posted by CSRSJim View Post
Thanks for all that answered my question about Medicare.
Since I paid into Medicare with payroll taxes my entire life (like most), I get Medicare Part A at age 65 at no additional cost.
Since I will be a federal retiree, I can continue to buy my FEHB health insurance in retirement. It is a good deal since I will only have to pay ~25% of the total premiums. Since I will be buying FEHB health insurance, I was wondering if buying additional coverage (Part B or Medigap) makes sense. Until I turn 65 (Medicare), I plan to buy a higher cost FEHB policy. Then when I turn 65, buying Part B and a less expensive FEHB policy to cover what Medicare Parts A & B don't pay for (similar to Medigap).

I was really wondering if others had to buy both Part B and Medigap coverage, or just Medigap.
Well, most of us fellow federal retirees do not buy anything additional prior to age 65. We just stay on a FEHB plan that is most suitable for our needs. A lot of us have BC/BS, but many switched to NALC (including me and my husband), and a number of others are very happy with GEHA.

At 65 or when Medicare will be primary, meaning you have retired, or the one with FEHB as the carrier has retired) the overwhelming majority do take the part B. In my NARFE retiree group, out of about 45 active members, only about 3 didn't take the B, and at least one regrets it.

If the person who is the carrier of FEHB has not yet retired, the one who is Medicare eligible can elect to only take Part A free, and then when the carrier retires, the spouse can sign up for part B under a special enrollment period without penalty. You keep the FEHB as your secondary (or the equivalent of Medigap- but FEHB is not Medigap) and your Medicare becomes primary. Between the two, you should not have deductibles or copays.

Many do switch to a less expensive FEHB plan when Medicare becomes primary- but you need to look at your FEHB plan's RX plan, since you don't have to buy Part D. FEHB will cover your drug needs.
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Old 05-18-2015, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Nebraska
1,886 posts, read 2,300,496 times
Reputation: 5327
Retired at 47 with a full pension, with medical. I had 30 years (yes I started at age 17) when I retired. My investments had done very well and didn't need to work again, however I got bored and worked a few more years for the federal government. I'm now 61 had have been fully retired, and loving it, for 6 years.
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Old 05-18-2015, 01:55 PM
 
Location: Minnesota
95 posts, read 80,988 times
Reputation: 306
I am fifty and my wife is 48. We both plan on retiring in 7 years. Both work for local government and both have the last of the pensions that allow you to retire as early as 55 instead of 66 (for those hired after 1989). I am not in a hurry to get there but it is now visible. I am getting tired of the cold.
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:22 AM
 
Location: Hot Springs Village, Ark
394 posts, read 933,551 times
Reputation: 356
Retired in 2011 at 60 after 40 years with the railroad. I collect railroad retirement instead of SS and have a company pension due to being in management. My wife is 3 years older than me so she took early SS at 62 while I was still working. When I turned 60 she got an increase in her SS from railroad retirement. We both contributed substantially to 401Ks while working so money is not an issue. Not bored, lots of golf and travel, we are truly blessed to have this lifestyle.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:48 PM
 
8 posts, read 8,681 times
Reputation: 46
Age 54 for me. I was planning on 50 but a few bad investments delayed things. No kids, no wife (ex or otherwise). I have a modest pension and lived well below my means all my life. I get 10 years of health insurance at the same rate as active employees. I'll be 6 months short for medicare assuming laws don't change but I figure I can pay for that. I hated my job and love retirement, it's been two years now. No regrets as I am still healthy and active. If I ever get bored I can always go back and work somewhere. They real key is living below your means and not going into debt. I'm able to spend more now in retirement than i did when I was saving for it. Wouldn't change a thing.
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Old 05-20-2015, 10:31 PM
 
406 posts, read 370,363 times
Reputation: 822
I was 55. Was laid off and decided to retire. I had planned on working another 2 to 4 years, but was really ready to get out. So, we downsized, relocated and live frugally. We will be able to live on our SS when my husband starts collecting his in January. In the meantime, my SS covers most of our expenses. We do have healthcare from my former company, but it isn't cheap. It will become our secondary when we reach Medicare age.
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Old 05-21-2015, 07:09 AM
 
Location: Metro Seattle Area - Born and Raised
718 posts, read 293,725 times
Reputation: 1762
Resently retired at the age of 52. Worked 21 years in federal law enforcement. I also retired from the Army Reserve, with 13 years of that served on Active Duty, back in 2009 with a senior enlisted rank, but will not draw any pay from them until I'm 60 y/o... Which is another 7.5 years away. I'm more than fine with that since my civilian pension was pretty good since it allowed me to retire with a little more than 72% of my working net monthly take-home earnings. Plus, I was able to save and invest within the federal employee's TSP program, which I haven't even touched since I want to let it grow for another 2.5 year before deciding if I need any extra monthly money. Also, the U.S. Congress finally passed a law last week which allows retired federal law enforcement officers, firefighters and air traffic controllers to withdraw from their TSP savings WITHOUT paying any penalties BEFORE the age of 59 and a half.

Plus, having a TSP/401K plan with close to a half million is a comforting feeling since that's my financial security blanket.

I'm now in the process of selling my home and moving back to my hometown on the west coast to be near all my kids and my 2 new granddaughters... Kind of sucks a little since its a high cost of living area, but I want to be near my kids. I'm thinking about finding a part-time "no stress" or "demanding" job, just to give me something to do with all this free time I now have... Before retiring, my last 3 years on the job, I worked an average of 65 hours or more a week... Without any overtime pay since I received LEAP pay. Anyway, I've gotten use to working long hours, so working a 24 hour week will be easy to adjust to!! Plus, that extra $1000 to $1300 will help to off-set the higher cost of living I will be adopting shortly.

I really don't see myself being fully retired until I'm at least 55/56 years old... Maybe sooner if something changes or if my health take a turn for the worse.

Regardless, I love the fact that I'm now retired and have a pension check for the rest of my life!! My two chosen careers were very-very demanding and very-very stressful, but yesterday, when I applied for a new passport and it was a good feeling to write down in the occupation section "retired."
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