Since health insurance is a big concern for many of us who RE, I am posting my experience so far with trying to find out how much individual insurance will cost after I exhaust COBRA. Reading things on healthinsuranceinfo.net is one thing. Getting real numbers is a lot more useful. Here's the theoretical scenario:
- Retiring at the end of 2007
- Plan to move to FL
- Use COBRA for 18 mos for me and DW
- Conversion policy per HIPAA
I called the Florida Dept. of Finance (they regulate insurance) and they weren't much help. I called my current group insurer - United Health. They put me through to Golden Rule because United doesn't do conversion policies. I got quotes ranging from $280 - $500 per month depending on deductibles. I don't know if we'd qualify for these rates because of the usual high blood pressure and cholesterol things that apply to most folks in their late 50's.
If you can't get a conversion policy, there are 4 companies in FL who will write "guaranteed issue" policies with no underwriting/physicals, etc. One of these is Aetna, so I called them. The first person i got said "Are you sure you want guaranteed issue? You should try to get a regular(i.e. underwritten) policy first." I said I wanted to get the guaranteed issue rates just to see what the worst case was. She transferred me to someone else who gave me rates for DW and me. Guaranteed issue. Prices per month were $1500 - $1800 depending on the deductibles. That's a bit steep, but at least I know what I am up against.
My plan now is to use COBRA and then when I move to FL, try to get an individual policy (with underwriting) for DW and myself. If that fails, I'll be spending a nice chunk of change for health insurance of around $18 to $21K a year until Medicare kicks in (or until I kick the bucket because I'm paying so f@#!$%& much for health insurance.)