Retiree Insurance Considerations

Before Your Retire


Be aware of how the day of the month on which you retire will affect your insurance coverage:
  • If you retire on or after the first day of the month, you are covered through the end of that month.
  • If you retire on the last day of the month your insurance coverage ends that day.
  • Your Long-Term disability and life insurance coverage can be converted to individual plans. You will receive information regarding conversion at your exit interview.
Take advantage of your benefits while you are still employed:
  • Get caught up on your dental and vision appointments.
  • Utilize your Employee Assistance Program for financial planning, stress management, legal services, etc. These services are free and confidential.

Retiree Health Coverage


You may continue your health insurance coverage for yourself, your spouse or registered domestic partner and your eligible dependents for the rest of your life at your own expense. You may be entitled to a health insurance stipend. Please see your memoranda of understanding (MOU) for specific amounts and conditions.
  • See the current premium rates for retiree health coverage.
  • You must be in the health plan you want to continue when you retire. Retirees have the option of changing their health plans, after retirement, during our annual open enrollment period in October.
  • You may add or delete dependents if you have a qualifying event such as marriage or divorce.
  • Your spouse or registered domestic partner may continue his/her health coverage in their own name upon your death.
  • You have a one-time option to waive your health insurance at retirement if you coverage under another group health plan. Signing the waiver entitles you to re-enroll in the City's insurance should you lose your other coverage. You must provide proof to the City within 30 days of the loss of your other coverage in order to be eligible to re-enroll in the same plan you had when you left City service.
  • View the Retired Employees Health Coverage Form (PDF) that you will be asked to complete at your exit interview. You do not have to complete it in advance. However, by reviewing the form before you retire, you can bring the information you will need and be prepared to make the selections requested.

COBRA Coverage


You may continue health insurance coverage for yourself and your eligible dependents after retirement in one of two ways. You may opt for retiree medical coverage which you may continue for the rest of your life, or you may choose COBRA continuation coverage which you may keep for up to 18 months. An additional 18 month extension of COBRA (CALCOBRA) benefits may be available to Kaiser members only. The extension does not apply to self-insured plans such as City PPO and City EPO. Kaiser members should contact Kaiser directly near the end of their initial 18 months of coverage to inquire about the extension.

Please remember: If you choose COBRA, you cannot convert to the retiree health insurance upon expiration of your COBRA.

You are also entitled to continue your dental and vision COBRA coverage for yourself and your eligible dependents for up to 18 months after retirement. You may choose to continue one or both of these benefits at a cost of 102% of the City's premium.

The City's retiree insurance plans provide excellent coverage at competitive rates, but they are not the only game in town. It's a good idea to shop around and see what other insurance plans are out there. (AARP is one good resource.) The decision you make about retiree health insurance is one of the most important decisions you will make.