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Human Resources

Planning for Retirement

Retirement planning is a process that takes place over the course of your career. Below is a list of important resources to assist you with retirement planning.

Social Security
You can start your Social Security retirement benefits as early as age 62 or as late as age 70. Your monthly benefit amount will be different depending on the age you start receiving it. Social Security offers benefit calculators to help you estimate your Social Security Income in retirement.

TIAA-CREF
TIAA-CREF’s website offers you 24-hour access to your retirement account information. The site also offers an array of resources including Retirement Plan Income Options. Contact TIAA-CREF directly at 800-842-2776 for more information and/or advice or schedule an on-campus meeting with an Individual Consultant by contacting Savannah Brymer.

Health Coverage At Retirement

Your choices for health insurance at retirement may include Medicare, early retiree benefits,and/or COBRA continuation coverage.

Options for Health Coverage at Retirement

Your College health insurance will continue through your last month of employment. (For example, if your last day of work is June 1, your coverage will end June 30).

Your choices for health insurance at retirement include:

  • Medicare
  • Early retiree health insurance
  • And/or COBRA continuation coverage.

Your eligibility for these options is dependent upon your age. For Early Retiree Insurance, your age and years of service at the time of retirement determine eligibility.

I. Medicare
The government provides health care benefits through Medicare. Click here to learn about the benefits offered under Medicare Parts A, B, C, and D.

*RETIREMENT TIMELINE: THREE MONTHS PRIOR TO REACHING AGE 65
Whether you plan to continue working or retire after age 65, contact Social Security now to enroll in Medicare Part A and discuss when you should enroll in Medicare Parts B, C, and D. You can apply by visiting your local Social Security Office or caling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213.

A. Eligibility
Medicare determines eligibility guidelines for coverage. Click here to access eligibility guidelines and an interactive tool that will provide information specific to you.

B. Monthly Cost
Medicare determines the monthly cost of coverage. Click here for information about current rates.

C. Medicare Supplemental Insurance

  • Click here to learn about the types of coverage available through Medicare including Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage, and Medicare Supplemental Insurance (or Medigap).
  • Your current insurance provider can inform you about their Medicare Supplemental Insurance offerings:
    • Blue Cross Blue Shield- (205) 306-2799
    • VIVA Health- (205) 533-4748

II. Early Retiree Insurance

Employees hired prior to June 1, 2014 are eligible to receive early retiree insurance benefits.

When you enroll in early retiree insurance, your health, dental, and/or vision benefits will remain the same as when you were actively employed.

*RETIREMENT TIMELINE: DURING YOUR LAST MONTH OF WORK
Contact HR to apply for Early Retirement Insurance.

A. Eligiblity
You will be eligible for early retiree health, dental, and vision insurance if you are:

  • Enrolled at the time of retirement
  • Age 60-64 with ten years of service
  • Age 55-59 years with 20 years of service
  • Not eligible for Medicare
  • Not otherwise ineligible for the College’s health, dental, and/or vision insurance

B. Monthly Premiums
Please contact HR for current rates.

  • Age 60-64 Health premiums partially funded by the College. You will be responsible for the full dental and vision premiums.
  • Age 55- 59 You will be responsible for the full health, dental, and/or vision premiums.

C. Spouse and Dependent Coverage
Your spouse/dependent will be eligible for coverage on your early retiree benefits as long as you are eligible and if he/she is:

  • On your College insurance at time of your retirement
  • Under age 65
  • Not eligible for Medicare
  • Not otherwise ineligible for the College’s health, dental, and/or vision insurance

D. Reaching Age 65
When you turn 65, you and your spouse/dependents are no longer eligible for coverage on the College’s health, dental, and/or vision plans through Early Retiree Insurance.

      • At age 65, you become eligible for Medicare. For details, see Section I on Medicare above.
      • COBRA allows you, your spouse, and/or dependents to extend existing health, dental, and/or vision coverage for up to 18 months. For details, see Section III on COBRA below.
      • If you enroll in both COBRA coverage and Medicare coverage, Medicare will be primary and COBRA will be secondary.

III. COBRA
COBRA allows you to extend your existing health coverage for up to 18 months.

*RETIREMENT TIMELINE: DURING YOUR LAST MONTH OF WORK
Contact HR to apply for COBRA coverage.

A. Eligibility
You and your spouse/dependents are eligible to extend health, dental, and/or vision coverage through COBRA if you were enrolled in the coverage at the time of retirement.

B. Monthly Cost
COBRA premiums are equal to 100% of the total monthly premium plus a 2% service charge.

C. Spouse and Dependent Coverage
Your eligible spouse/dependents can extend coverage through COBRA independently of whether or not you elect COBRA. (i.e. If you enroll in Medicare, your spouse can enroll in COBRA single coverage.)

D. Co-insurance
If you enroll in both COBRA coverage and Medicare coverage, Medicare will be primary and COBRA will be secondary.

This information is intended as a tool to help you know who to contact and what questions to ask as you plan for your future retirement. Please note, this is not a comprehensive guide and you should communicate with the HR office and appropriate government agencies or insurance carriers as you make decisions about your medical coverage after retirement.