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Old 12-13-2015, 05:53 PM   #21
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Only ACA. I have received lots of unemployment benefits though, in the past. I'm 61 and RE. Not looking forward to age 65 when I have to go on Medicare and my health ins costs will probably greatly increase over ACA costs.
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Old 12-13-2015, 05:54 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nun View Post
Lots of ER folks finesse their income to qualify for ACA subsidies, but do you also use your low income status to get other benefits like fuel assistance or even food stamps?
Just ACA for us as well, but it also provides us with nice Federal tax benefits ($0.00 paid) last year, and this year.
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Old 12-13-2015, 05:57 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
Maybe I just got lucky but I applied online and got the Medicare card with no issues or surprises. Doctor's office and the hospital take it with no surprises there either.

SS is a little more complicated and since there's an office 10 minutes away I think I'll apply there for SS.
Actually I applied online for SS ~3 months before I was 62 and was amazed at how simple it was. Payments started appearing in my bank account right on schedule and for the right amounts. It was about a two years later that the problems started. Can't get them fixed on line and calling in is a waste of time. Even writing them letters seem to get lost or delayed. So far the only solution has been office visits and I'm a lot further than 10 mins away from my local office. Basically each visit is a minimum of half a day for me between driving to and from and waiting in the office. So far they have been the cause of the problems but it's been my responsibility to get it straighten out. Hopefully as you have mention, the Medicare experience will be better.

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Originally Posted by meierlde View Post
If you are already recieveing Social Security benefits your actual medicare card will arrive in the mail 2-3 months before your medicare start date. No need to apply it just happens. Then your part B premiums will be deducted automatically from the SS benefit.(As well as any income related additional payments for Part B and D). You will get tons of mail offering medigap policies of various sorts. You do have to decide on a part D plan also.
But basically because your on SS already the base medicare part happens automatically.
Note that Medicare starts on the first of the month you turn 65 unless you were born on the first, then it starts a month earlier.
I'm aleady getting tons of mailers. However, I didn't know Medicare would happen automatically if I was already receiving SS. But I guess that really doesn't surprise me since they are pretty good about taking money out of my SS payments. It's the giving back part they seem to have a problem with. Also, I didn't know Medicare was active from the 1st of the month that I turned 65. I was wondering about that but haven't looked it up yet. Thanks for that info.
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:01 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by John Galt III View Post
Only ACA. I have received lots of unemployment benefits though, in the past. I'm 61 and RE. Not looking forward to age 65 when I have to go on Medicare and my health ins costs will probably greatly increase over ACA costs.
If you are in the subsidy range for the ACA if you look this year you would pay about $109 for part B coverage (it increases above 85k single 170 joint) You then select a part D plan and that is just its premium unless you are above the levels for part B. You then have medigap which depends on which plan you select.
In my case going from employer retiree coverage to medicare and including the means testing features and the employer medigap plan still the premiums went down about $40 per month. (Single). Were 450/month on the employer plan.

So things might not be as bad as you suspect, when you turn 65.
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:13 PM   #25
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Actually I applied online for SS ~3 months before I was 62 and was amazed at how simple it was. Payments started appearing in my bank account right on schedule and for the right amounts. It was about a two years later that the problems started. Can't get them fixed on line and calling in is a waste of time. Even writing them letters seem to get lost or delayed. So far the only solution has been office visits and I'm a lot further than 10 mins away from my local office. Basically each visit is a minimum of half a day for me between driving to and from and waiting in the office. So far they have been the cause of the problems but it's been my responsibility to get it straighten out. Hopefully as you have mention, the Medicare experience will be better.
What may be of help in lighting a fire under the right butt is contacting your congresscritter's office. They have entire staffs whose sole job is to keep a Rolodex (or the functional digital equivalent) of people in government who will

A. Answer the telephone.

and

B. Know what they're talking about.

We found this out when dealing with some VA issues for DW's father. At least in our case the congressional staff member did call back to make sure the issue had been resolved. They were very helpful. I wrote a letter back to the congresscritter naming and thanking the staff member and the person in the VA who was helpful.

Anyone who has worked in government knows that matters.
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:20 PM   #26
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For me, there are limits to what I would feel comfortable in doing to receive public assistance by 'finessing my income'. Leave those benefits to those who actually need them.
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:50 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by Walt34 View Post
What may be of help in lighting a fire under the right butt is contacting your congresscritter's office. They have entire staffs whose sole job is to keep a Rolodex (or the functional digital equivalent) of people in government who will

A. Answer the telephone.

and

B. Know what they're talking about.
That's another good idea. I may try that if my current issue isn't resolved soon. (I just made a SS office visit last week and hand delivered my newest paper work documenting "their" mistakes and explaining it to an agent, who of course isn't empowered to make the "ruling".) Fortunately, I don't need the money and I won't miss the few months of payments they plan to withhold (I'm sure I'll get it back later anyway when this is resolved). What about the folks that really depend and/or live on these payments. What are they suppose to do. Not eat or pay their bills for a few months!
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:53 PM   #28
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Car-Guy, what was the issue if you don't mind sharing?


Sent from my iPhone using Early Retirement Forum
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Old 12-13-2015, 07:06 PM   #29
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Car-Guy, what was the issue if you don't mind sharing?


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Without going into too much detail, it has to do with how deferred income is treated differently between the IRS and SS.
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Old 12-13-2015, 07:36 PM   #30
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When my company retired everyone over 55 years old, I was able to draw unemployment benefits for almost 2 years. We were allowed to purchase MegaCompany's Cadillac insurance coverage until age 65--most of which was paid out of a Retiree health savings account.
I thought companies were not allowed to shed employees by age. I recall that when my megacorp did a headcount cut, they published data showing an even distibution against the existing employee population.
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