By this point, most people know that Medicare supplements have the same standards. This can make it difficult for Medicare eligible consumer to make a comparison of plans from one company to another. It is easy to be confused with the insurance terms or significance involved with choosing a Medicare Supplement plan; nonetheless there are three general guidelines to be followed to simplify the process.
Refer to a broker but make your own decision. Brokers are independent contractors. They are licensed by the state and work with insurance companies to sell their insurance products. A lot of people think you pay the broker to get a supplement through him and it is more expensive than if you act from the company. However this is not true. Since the price of your Medicare supplement plan will be the same no matter who you apply through (a broker or directly with the company), the advantage of this is that the broker will make a comparison off all the options and advise you with the information in order you can make the right decision. If you call a company directly, you will likely hear many reasons that company is “the best,” even if they are not really best for your situation. This is not a reliable way to choose the company. Each company wants to have more clients and it will attempt to persuade you that it is the best. Working with a broke is the only way to rest assured that you are receiving an honest, unbiased opinion on which of the hundreds of companies out there really is the best choice, for you.
When making a decision on Medicare Supplement, many consumers to focus on insignificant coverage details or company facts that should have little to do with their decision. The main features of the plan should be given the most attention. For instance, Plan J contains a few benefits not offered by Plan F. However the advantages of these benefits are limited.
Furthermore, since Medigap Plan J will no longer be sold after June 2010, any expert advisor will tell you it is never best to be insured by a policy that no longer accepts no enrollments, as being in such a position almost always leads to significant rate increases in the very near future. As such, you should make sure that you purchase a supplement plan that will still be marketed beyond 2010, such as the popular Plan F. It is very important to make a decision considering the options in a reasonable, unbiased way, to choose a plan not only because it is the most coverage or a company because you have seen it advertised on TV.
Company reputation and rating is important, but it is not everything. There is no doubt that it is better to choose a company that has been worked for 100 years than that has been in business 100 days. Since Medicare supplemental plans offer standardized benefits, meaning Plan F works the same no matter whose Plan F you have, most consumers will simply opt for the plan with the lowest monthly premium.
If you have additional questions, or need assistance in finding the best Medicare Supplement plan for your situation, contact Medigap Advisors at 866-323-1441.
Wiley Long is founder and president of Medigap Advisors, and is passionate about helping people navigate the confusing waters of Medicare. He is the author of The Medicare Playbook: Designing Your Successful Health Coverage Strategy, a clear and simple explanation so you can make the most of your Medicare coverage. For more information visit www.MediGapAdvisors.com.