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Life, Health Insurers Hit by Mortgage-Backed Securities
In a shocking blow to its long-time employees, General Motors (GM) announced it will not provide its retirees health care benefits. Without a back-up plan, these baby boomers risk joining the 47 million uninsured Americans. Here are five alternative strategies to getting group rates when the boss won’t pay.
JOIN AN INTEREST GROUP
Consider joining, if you haven’t already, an alumni association, professional organization, religious group or trade union, since many offer group insurance to members. Group rates may offer a potential savings of up to 50% versus individual plans.
GO BACK TO SCHOOL
The advice here is not to enroll in, say, law school and take out a $100,000 student loan just to gain access to the university’s group health policy. But what about signing up for one or two evening courses at a local college? Many schools are known to extend their group insurance rates to both full and part-time students. Consider paying $300 a semester or $75 a month for a class to be eligible for the school’s group rates.
A Merrill Lynch New Retirement Study from 2006 found more than 70% of boomers say they will continue to hold a job after retiring. Borders (BGP), Costco (COST), Gap (GPS), Petco, Whole Foods (WFMI) and dozens of retail outlets offer exceptional health care benefits to both full and part-time employees. They’re also becoming a popular option for retirees who want to keep busy in the golden years and pay less for benefits. Visit our recent story on the various benefits offered by nationwide retail chains here.