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Friday, March 04 2011

It seems that everyone now a days is trying to save money any way possible. With a tough economy and not knowing when we will be bouncing back, cutting costs is inevitable. Gas prices could hit the highest it’s ever been this summer and just the other day I saw that a head of lettuce was over $3, that is just crazy. Saving money means a lot to everyone, but when you are a retired senior and your main income comes from Social Security, every penny counts. So, when dealing with Texas Medigap Insurance Plans, finding the cheapest coverage could help put some money back in the bank.

As I have mentioned many times, all Texas Medicare Supplements are “standardized”. This means there is no difference in coverage from one insurance company’s Medigap plan compared to another company’s Medigap plan, when looking at plans with the same letter (A-N). So, if you can get the exact same coverage at a lower rate, you would think that Medicare beneficiaries would constantly be shopping for the lowest premiums. The funny thing is most don’t. So, with this information, why do people not search for the cheapest Medigap Policy available? I do not know what it is exactly, but with my years in insurance and the clients I have talked to, I believe I have narrowed it down to two main reasons.
  1. The fear of not getting the same coverage. See, if you take a Medicare Supplement Plan F, it is designed to cover 100% in excess of what Medicare A and B does not cover, in regards to approved charges. So, this means that when an individual goes in for a major surgery, there is no cost left over to them, other than the monthly premium. Why would anyone want to change from a company after they just paid all of the remaining medical costs? Most don’t, and that is why most seniors are paying hundreds of dollars more for the exact same coverage they could get with another insurance company.

  2. Confusion of when you can change your coverage. At the end of 2005, the introduction to Medicare Part D and the increase in subsidies to insurance companies approved to offer Medicare Advantage Plans set a whole new set of rules that Medicare beneficiaries had to follow. It is know as the Annual Enrollment Period, or commonly miscalled the Open Enrollment Period. Since 2005 this has always been November 15th through December 31st of every year. This was the time of year the government and CMS (Centers for Medicare and Medicaid) set up to make changes to your Part D or Medicare Advantage Plan for the following year. (Just a note: For 2011 the AEP will be October 15th through December 7th.) This caused a very big misconception that people with Medicare supplements that they had to change this time of year as well. THIS IS NOT THE CASE. With a Texas Medicare supplement insurance plan, you can change anytime you want, in most cases you will just have to go through underwriting.
Another reason that seniors are paying too much for their Texas Medicare supplement plans, is due to the release of the New Modernized Medicare Supplements. On June 1, 2010 the government changed the outline of Medigap policies. When this happened it caused insurance companies to basically start up a whole new book of business. This left the old policies, or the ones purchased before June 1, 2010 with out any new premiums coming in to help offset medical cost. If you have not reviewed your Texas Medicare Supplement Rates since June 1, 2010, you may be shocked at how much more you are paying per month for basically the same coverage.
If you have not reviewed your Texas Medicare Supplement Rates in a year or two, please contact an agent today and we will provide you with a free Medicare insurance review and a no obligation, side-by-side report of Medicare Supplement Insurance Quotes in Texas.
Posted by: Cameron Kirchoff AT 12:45 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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