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Retiree Health Care Options

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When you are ready to retire, you have three health care options:

1. Start coverage at retirement

  • You may elect coverage before you leave Stanford and benefits will begin the first day of the month after your retirement date. This coverage stays in effect until the end of the calendar year in which you enroll, unless you have a qualifying life event or fail to pay your contributions on time. 
  • During each annual open enrollment period, you will receive information that allows you to change your current benefits elections for the following calendar year.
  • You cannot make any changes until the next annual open enrollment period, unless you have a qualifying life event.

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2. Postpone coverage until a later date

  • You may choose not to enroll in your retiree benefits at retirement, but reserve the right to enroll during any future open enrollment period or if you have a qualifying life event. You may postpone only once when you first retire.
  • After you enroll in a Stanford retiree health plan, you no longer have the option to stop coverage and start again at a later date.
  • If you die while eligible for the retiree health care program, your eligible surviving dependents have a one-time option to postpone coverage. If your eligible surviving spouse/registered domestic partner then dies, your surviving children likewise have a one-time option to postpone coverage.
  • If you do not enroll or apply to postpone coverage within 31 days of your retirement, you will be automatically placed in postpone status indefinitely until you contact us.

3. Waive coverage and permanently lose future eligibility and access to Stanford health care coverage

  • You may decline or drop retiree health care coverage at retirement, or at any time, and permanently waive your right to retiree health care.
  • If you wish to waive coverage, we will ask you to confirm your decision.
  • If you enroll for coverage and then terminate coverage for any reason, you cannot re-enroll. You and your eligible dependents lose all future eligibility for Stanford retiree health care.