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February 5, 2024
Attained Age vs Issue Age Medigap plans

Attained age Medigap plans determine premiums based on your current age, while Issue-age Medigap plans set premiums based on your age when you sign up with the plan.

Medicare Supplement Insurance, also known as Medigap, provides additional coverage to fill the gaps left by original Medicare. When considering a Medigap plan, it's important to understand the different pricing methods available, such as Attained Age, Issue Age, and Community Rated plans. In this article, we will explore these pricing methods, their implications on premiums and coverage, and help you determine which option may be best suited for your needs.

Medicare Supplement Pricing Methods:

Medigap plans are categorized into three major pricing methods: Attained Age, Issue Age, and Community Rated. Each method has its own advantages and considerations, which we will explore in detail.

  1. Attained Age
  2. Issue Age
  3. Community Rated

The pricing methods of Medigap policies, including attained age and issue age, are explained in the chart below, which illustrates how age impacts premiums and emphasizes the need to consider current and future costs.

Type of Pricing

How it's priced

What this pricing may mean for you

The premium is based on your current age (the age you’ve “attained”), so your premium goes up as you get older.

Premiums are low for younger buyers but go up as you get older. They may be the least expensive at first, but they can eventually become the most expensive. Premiums may also go up because of inflation and other factors.

Issue-age rated (also called “entry age-rated”)

The premium is based on the age you are when you buy (are “issued”) the Medigap policy.

Premiums are lower for people who buy at a younger age and won’t change as you get older. Premiums may go up because of inflation and other factors but not because of your age.

Community rated (also called “no-age rated”)

Generally the same premium is charged to everyone who has the Medigap policy, regardless of age or gender.

Your premium isn’t based on your age. Premiums may go up because of inflation and other factors but not because of your age.


Attained Age Medigap Plans:

Attained Age pricing calculates premiums based on your current age. Initially, premiums may be lower, but they tend to increase as you age. These increases can be attributed to factors such as inflation and age-related risks for medical conditions. Attained Age plans are the most common type offered by Medigap, appealing to those who prefer lower initial premiums but are willing to accept potential future increases.

Issue Age Medigap Plans:

Issue Age pricing determines premiums based on your age at the time of enrollment in the plan. Once you enroll, your premiums are set and generally do not increase due to age-related factors. Issue Age plans provide stability in premiums over time, which can be beneficial for those seeking a predictable and consistent premium cost.

Community Rated Medigap Plans:

Community Rated pricing sets the same premium for everyone within a specific geographical area, regardless of age. Premiums for Community Rated plans do not depend on an individual's age but can be influenced by other factors such as location or health conditions. This pricing method offers stability and prevents age-related increases, appealing to those who prefer a predictable premium cost.

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Which Is Better: Attained Age or Issue Age?

Determining which pricing method is better, whether Attained Age or Issue Age, depends on your personal preferences and financial considerations. Attained Age plans often offer lower initial premiums but can increase over time. Issue Age plans provide stability in premiums but may have higher initial costs. It's essential to evaluate your current health, financial capacity, and long-term goals to make an informed decision based on your individual circumstances.

Rate Increases on Medigap Policies:

It's important to note that rate increases can occur on Medigap policies for various reasons. For Attained Age plans, premiums may increase based on both age-related factors and inflation. Issue Age plans generally have fewer age-related increases but may still experience inflation-related adjustments. Consulting with an experienced insurance agent can help you understand and anticipate any potential rate increases on your Medigap policy.

Conclusion:

When choosing a Medigap plan, understanding the pricing methods of Attained Age, Issue Age, and Community Rated becomes crucial. By evaluating your own preferences, budgetary constraints, and long-term goals, you can select a Medigap plan that aligns with your needs. Seeking guidance from an insurance agent can offer valuable insights and help you make an informed decision regarding the best pricing method for your Medicare Supplement Insurance coverage.

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