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June 25, 2019
Can You Stay On A Company Health Plan After Age 65?
Generally, Medicare is available for people age 65 or older; this is well-known. What is less well-known is the fact that some companies can legally cancel group health insurance for a worker reaching this milestone. Baby boomers who aspire to keep working into their mid-sixties may want to take note of this.
The key factor here is the size of the workplace. A business with fewer than 20 employees can either choose to stop group health coverage for a worker at age 65, or let the employee stay on the plan with the recognition that his or her Medicare benefits will take precedence over the group coverage. When a company has 20 or more employees, it has a legal responsibility to offer the same group health insurance to all of its workers, regardless of how old or young they are. That said, the employer may require an employee to work a certain number of hours per week to maintain his or her group health benefits; if the employee cannot meet that criterion, then eligibility for group health coverage may be lost.1