Retirement Planning… Am I going to keep my insurance?
Congratulations on your retirement decision! You may be asking two important questions, “Am I eligible for insurance benefits when I retire? Will my spouse be insured after my passing?”
The answer is, yes! If you worked for the Town of Chelmsford and will receive a monthly pension check through Middlesex County Retirement or Mass Teachers Retirement System, you are eligible for retiree group insurance benefits. The Town has adopted M.G.L. Chapter 32B, Sect 9D and agrees to provide a minimum contribution of 50% toward health insurance for the surviving spouse of a retiree. Currently, the Town contributes 60% of the health premium for the retiree and their spouse.
Upon giving notice of your retirement:
You should meet with Human Resources after giving your retirement notice to determine the insurance plans you want to continue or decline, and the monthly premium costs. Your retiree contribution will be different than the active employee contribution.
- The first step is to complete the Retiree Benefit Summary along with medical enrollment forms for the plans you wish to continue, like health, dental, vision or life insurance.
- Next, complete and forward your insurance documents to Human Resources to be processed. In most cases you will be transferring from the active to retired group with no change in medical coverage.
- The basic life benefit for retirees is reduced to $1,000, the voluntary life benefit is reduced to $5,000. Voluntary coverage ends at 75 years old.
- Human Resources will contact MCRS or MTRS to deduct your insurance premiums from your monthly retirement pension. The Town Treasurer will track the payments received.
If you are turning 65 at or just before retirement, you must file for Medicare Part A & Part B with Social Security to enroll in a Medicare supplemental (over 65) benefit plan. This includes your spouse as well. Enrollment forms are below.
If you were not insured while actively employed but decide later to enroll with the Town of Chelmsford, that opportunity is still available to you during the annual open enrollment in May with July 1st start. If you are over 65, the annual open enrollment period for health insurance is November with January 1st start. Also, if you lose coverage elsewhere, you may have a qualified life event allowing a mid-year enrollment. Ask Human Resources for details.
Retirees Over 65 Supplemental Insurance Rates effective January 1, 2024
Open Enrollment for Medicare Supplemental Plans is happening the month of November. If you are an eligible retiree of the Town of Chelmsford, receiving a pension, you may enroll in a Medicare supplemental plan or change from one plan to another supplemental plan offered by the Town of Chelmsford. See the plans currently offered below.
The Town of Chelmsford requires insured retired employees and their covered spouses to file for Medicare Part A & Part B at 65 years. It is recommended that you file four (4) months prior to your birth month with Social Security Administration either online, by calling your local office for an appointment or scheduling a phone interview by calling 1-800-772-1213.
If you or your covered spouse do not file for Medicare Part A & Part B at 65 years and file at a later date, you could both face financial penalties. Further, an insured member may risk losing HMO or PPO insurance coverage through the Town of Chelmsford as you are not able to remain on these plans past age 65. Even if you do not qualify for Medicare Part A because you waived Medicare tax as an employee prior to 1986. Retirees from the Town of Chelmsford must file and accept Medicare Part A & Part B at 65.
The Town of Chelmsford has adopted a program through Social Security to purchase Medicare Part A for its retirees and their spouses who do not qualify. Please contact Human Resources for more details to see if this might apply to you.
Once you receive your Medicare card with Part A & Part B benefits, you may enroll in one of the two Medicare Supplemental plans offered by the Town of Chelmsford listed below. A completed enrollment form must be filled out individually for each applicant and submitted along with a copy of the Medicare card to Human Resources.
Annual Open Enrollment
For enrollment in the over 65 Medical Insurance, Annual Open Enrollment is the month of November. Retirees and spouses either switching supplemental coverage between plans offered by the Town of Chelmsford or seeking insurance upon reaching age 65 and not currently insured by the Town of Chelmsford, enrollment is effective on January 1.
The Dental and Vision insurance annual Open Enrollment period is the month of May. Enrollment is effective on July 1.
BCBS Dental Enrollment Form
The Blue Medicare Rx, Prescription Drug Plan (PDP) is included as a benefit to both supplemental health plans above. Here is the plan summary with co-payments: Blue Medicare Rx - Prescription Drug Program