Last year AT&T retirees received some interesting medical insurance changes. You can read our post about those changes here. As a review, the company did away with their medical insurance coverage for retirees who are 65 and therefore are eligible for Medicare. They are now steering those retirees to the AON Hewitt Healthcare Exchange. If retirees sign up with AON, the company gave them a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) for 2015 – the funding was $2,700 for the retiree and $1,500 for an eligible dependent. Many people wondered if those changes would be a one-time credit and how they would be serviced in the years to come.
For the AT&T retirees that are impacted by this, we have good news for 2016! AT&T has mailed letters stating they will continue to support its’ retirees by providing HRA credits for HRA eligible participants who participate in qualifying coverage through the Exchange. They have also expanded the availability of HRA credits to those that need dental and/or vision coverage.
For Medical and/or Prescription Drug Coverage purchased through the Exchange, eligible retirees can get up to $2,700, and eligible dependents can get up to $1,500. For Dental and/or Vision coverage purchased through the Exchange, eligible retirees can get up to $300, and eligible dependents can get up to $200. The 2016 open enrollment period for these benefits will be October 15th – December 7th, 2015.
As we said last year, this can all seem very confusing to someone that hasn’t had to deal with HRA credits or the Exchange before. We would encourage you to contact your financial advisor at Sound Financial Strategies Group to see how this can impact your retirement planning. While we are not insurance experts, our experience helping AT&T retirees navigate retirement will be applicable in helping you with this important decision.