What are some pitfalls to avoid when selecting a Medicare supplement (watch video here)? What should you be considering when signing up for Medicare?  In this interview with Lance Otey, a health insurance expert in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, we discuss some things you should consider when signing up for Medicare and picking a Medicare supplement or advantage plan.

One of the biggest upsides of a Medicare Supplement (or Medigap) plan is that you do not have to worry about networks for doctors or hospitals.  If your doctor accepts Medicare, they will accept your supplement, regardless of which company you purchased it through.  Another great feature of Medicare is that all plans of a certain kind are identical, no matter which company you choose.  If you buy a plan D policy, it will have the same coverages no matter which carrier you select.  Where you will see a difference in these policies is with costs, customer service, and even the financial strength of the insurer.

There are several pitfalls that you will want to avoid when picking a Medicare supplement.  When picking a Medicare supplement, you should understand that you are purchasing the policy for the long term.  Just because you may not go to the doctor now, unfortunately, it does not mean this will always be the case.  Sacrificing coverage to save a few dollars in premiums, could end up costing you, in the long run, should you have a medical emergency.

One often neglected piece of a comprehensive Medicare insurance package is part D (prescription drug coverage).  You should remember that if you opt for a Medicare Supplement plan over a Medicare Advantage Plan, you will need to pair it with a standalone Part D Prescription Plan. Some people choose not to purchase a plan because they take little or no prescriptions when they first sign up for Medicare.  However, by doing this, you can end up paying more in penalties if you purchase a Part D plan in the future.

Of course, this should all be part of your financial plan, and working with a comprehensive financial planner can help show you how these different policies may affect your retirement goals.  If you need help evaluating these policies and how they fit into your overall financial plan, please reach out to us today!

Author: Brett Fry

Brett is the Managing Director of our office in Dallas, TX. In his current role, Brett oversees all aspects of client relationships whether that be creating financial plans, managing investment portfolios, or coordinating tax, estate, or insurance strategies with other professionals in this network. Brett's expertise in portfolio management, planning for the sale of a business, managing concentrated stock positions and helping young professionals accumulate wealth enables him to guide clients through their continuously changing financial decisions.