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Tricare + Medicare ? Plus employer's insurance?
Old 05-29-2020, 10:13 PM   #1
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Tricare + Medicare ? Plus employer's insurance?

Before I turn 65, I'm trying to figure out all the pieces for medical insurance.

DH is younger, and still working. He will probably continue the 'family' insurance with his employer while our youngest is still a college student and not yet 26. But, when that's not a factor, it's possible he'll go to a 'single' insurance plan.

DH has had employer's insurance, and Tricare has been our 2ndary insurance since I retired. That combination has worked out well for us.

I think I'm required to start Medicare when I turn 65, or else I lose Tricare ? Does that sound correct?

And there are other penalties for not starting Medicare within a couple months of turning 65, correct? 10% premium increase/year?

And how much of a headache is Medicare paperwork? Tricare gave us some problems when I first retired (Their records had my DOB incorrect.)

Would like to hear from people who have been in the Medicare + Tricare system.

Also, since we've had employer insurance for 20+ years, I'd love hearing some good stories about how Tricare/Medicare have worked if others have dropped employer ins.
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Old 05-30-2020, 12:02 AM   #2
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I am a few years away from medicare.


I have read that medicare plus tricare-for-life is excellent coverage. hard to beat it.


if you don't take medicare A and B at age 65, almost all of your military retired medical benefits stop.
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Old 05-30-2020, 02:28 AM   #3
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I'm retired military and recently turned 65. You must sign up for Medicare A and B or your Tricare for Life will not start. You'll also need a new military ID as yours will be dated to expire at 65. The new ID will be indefinite. I believe I'm paying $144.00 per month for Medicare.

As for the complexities, Medicare has been effortless for me. I actually prefer it because I don't have to play "mother may I" from a Primary Care doctor if I want to see a specialist.
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Old 05-30-2020, 05:16 AM   #4
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You won't have a problem. I retired long ago and used Tricare with a supplemental (Medigap) and there were occasionally a few minor hassles but nothing serious.

When I turned 65 I transitioned to Medicare/TFL and it has been wonderful. Far better than the employer insurance I used for some years after leaving the military. Paperwork is almost nonexistent.
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Old 05-30-2020, 05:24 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by braumeister View Post
You won't have a problem. I retired long ago and used Tricare with a supplemental (Medigap) and there were occasionally a few minor hassles but nothing serious.

When I turned 65 I transitioned to Medicare/TFL and it has been wonderful. Far better than the employer insurance I used for some years after leaving the military. Paperwork is almost nonexistent.
+1.

I am on Tricare. DW is on Medicare and TFL. Between those two and Express Scripts pharmacy, medical coverage is easy peasy, carefree and just a non-issue. Our solid medical coverage is definitely one of the legs of our "retirement stool."
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Old 05-30-2020, 08:36 AM   #6
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Absolutely agree with the above. We have used Medicare and TFL for ten years and have never had a claim denied. No paperwork yet.
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Old 05-30-2020, 09:50 AM   #7
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While you're reading about Medicare and TFL, it's also worth learning about IRMAA. Most people are unpleasantly surprised when you make a big financial move (perhaps a Roth IRA conversion or a rebalance) and end up having a year of higher Medicare B premiums.

https://www.kitces.com/blog/bipartis...ees-deduction/

https://the-military-guide.com/how-i...care-benefits/
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Old 05-30-2020, 06:32 PM   #8
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While you're reading about Medicare and TFL, it's also worth learning about IRMAA. Most people are unpleasantly surprised when you make a big financial move (perhaps a Roth IRA conversion or a rebalance) and end up having a year of higher Medicare B premiums.
Yes, these boards have given me many insights about IRMAA. And the cliff. Your story about your Dad was relevant.

However, I wish I had paid attention to IRMAA several years prior: my 2019 income will determine my 2021 level. Why didn't I do Roth conversions in 2017 or 2018?

Sometimes I'm not the smartest elf in the workshop.
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