My dad turned 63 and has decided he wants to retire. Without going into too much details his new boss has been rough on him. More info here https://workplace.stackexchange.com/questions/44079/father-having-issues-with-company-hes-been-working-at-for-over-30-years

In any event he wasn't making that much money yearly, around 40k. Because he's 63 he is not eligible for Medicaid. He asked me to help him find health insurance for him and my mom but it has proven to be difficult. Maybe I am doing something wrong but as I shop around I'm finding coverages that cost around 300 to 700 dollars a month with deductibles ranging from 4k to 12k. I can't believe these prices...who has this much money to pay such a high deductible? Am I doing something wrong or is this pretty standard? Any help or references is much appreciated.

One last thing I read about is people can check if they can get COBRA from their workplace but that seems pricey too.

  • I've done cobra between jobs, but the max time you can keep it is for 18months, which wouldn't be great for your dad. It's basically going to be better bang for your buck than anything else you can do, since you just start paying whatever your old company was paying for your insurance. Companies always get better rates than individuals. If I were him I would at least do cobra for 18 months and take it from there.
    – David
    Jul 18, 2015 at 3:01
  • @Dave so I guess these rates are pretty standard. I can't believe this...here is a man whose worked for the same company for over 35 years and wants to retire at 63 and these are the rates? All this Obamacare is BS.
    – JonH
    Jul 18, 2015 at 3:11
  • That looks about right to me. It's true, health insurance is ridiculously expensive. Obamacare has done nothing to change that.
    – Ben Miller
    Jul 18, 2015 at 3:47
  • Just to clarify about cobra: if he currently gets health insurance through his company he legally can get cobra (which allows him to keep the same insurance for 18months after leaving the company if he starts paying what the company was paying before). There's no question about whether his workplace allows it.
    – David
    Jul 18, 2015 at 4:09
  • O I didn't know that, is it the same rate
    – JonH
    Jul 18, 2015 at 13:35

1 Answer 1


The COBRA idea is interesting but I am not sure it will be cheaper than Obamacare - health insurance is just insanely expensive; best for him to discreetly ask HR before leaping.

The "good" news is that in two years, he should be eligible for Medicare, which should be a better option. So as Dave said, go with Obamacare or COBRA depending on cost and other factors (doctors in network, etc.) and wait for Medicare to kick in. Also, given that his income is going to go very low really soon, he will be eligible for Obamacare low-income subsidies, which will reduce the bill even further. Further, if you get a Silver or Bronze Obamacare plan, you can stash away $3,300 in a Health Savings Account (HSA) tax free, which should further help with expenses.

I am sorry your dad is having to leave his job of 30+ years because of some new jerk. However, I hope that the advice you get here will help you find good options for your dad.

  • 2
    There is no such thing as discreetly asking HR about provisions if you should leave the company. HR will immediately contact your manager to inform them that you are asking about leaving the company.
    – Eric
    Jul 21, 2015 at 22:45
  • This is a good answer but Eric is right too.
    – JonH
    Jul 31, 2015 at 21:04

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