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Can my employer cancel my insurance once I turn 65? 

It used to be that turning 65 meant retirement and Medicare enrollment.  Nowadays, with more people working past their 65th birthday, there are questions about how Medicare fits into this picture. Here is a question. 

“Can my employer cancel my health insurance when I turn 65? 
I don’t think this is legal.”

The answer depends on the size of the company sponsoring the group health plan.  If the company has 20 or more employees, it must offer the same coverage to those 65 years or older as it does to younger employees. The company cannot modify coverage or charge more. The employee can choose to keep the group health coverage or drop it and enroll in Medicare.

A company with fewer than 20 employees has two options:

  • It can exclude those 65 and older from group coverage. Those employees would enroll in Medicare.
  • It can let those 65 and older keep the coverage. In this case, the group plan generally becomes secondary to Medicare. The 65-year old employee would need to enroll in premium-free Medicare, Part A, during the Initial Enrollment Period. The group health plan would help pay for eligible expenses that Medicare didn’t cover. If the plan’s drug coverage was creditable (meaning paying at least the same as a Part D plan would), there would be no need to enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan
Last updated: 09-04-2018