A Medicare Supplement Insurance policy from Mutual of Omaha is backed by extremely high financial ratings. They have also been been in the Medigap market for over 50 years. You may remember them as the sponsors of the “Wild Kingdom” wildlife show.
In this article we will cover the following:
- Who Is Mutual of Omaha?
- What Is a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan?
- Benefits Provided By Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans
- How Much Do Mutual of Omaha Supplement Insurance Plans Cost?
- Which Medicare Supplement Plans Does Mutual of Omaha Offer?
- Switching from One Supplement Insurance Plan to Another
- How to Enroll in a Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan
Who Is Mutual of Omaha?
Mutual of Omaha was founded by a medical student in 1909 in Nebraska. Since then, they have grown into a Fortune 500 company with a financial strength rating of “A+” from both A.M. Best and S&P. They have total assets over $43 billion.
Mutual of Omaha offers many products and services beyond Medicare Supplement Insurance, including:
- Life insurance
- Long term care insurance
- Accident insurance
- Dental insurance
- Disability insurance
- Annuities and retirement products
Medicare Supplement Insurance from Mutual of Omaha can be issued through one of several subsidiaries, depending on the State, including:
- Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company
- United of Omaha Life Insurance Company
- United World Life Insurance Company
- Companion LIfe Insurance Company
What Is a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan?
Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans, also known as Medigap Plans, are insurance policies issued by private companies to help pay for some or all of the expenses you might incur under Original Medicare.
Under Original Medicare, you are responsible for a Deductible under Parts A and B, coinsurance of 20% for physician and outpatient services under Part B, and 100% of medical expenses outside the United States.
Supplement Insurance policies cover these specific gaps in Original Medicare. By doing so, they provide a known, fixed out of pocket maximum for each year, which is a major concern for many people on Original Medicare.
Enrollment in a Medicare Supplement Plan requires the following:
- You must be eligible for, and enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B
- You must continue to pay your Part B premium (and Part A if applicable)
- You cannot be enrolled in Medicare Advantage
- To receive prescription drug coverage, you’ll need to enroll in a standalone Part D Drug Plan
- Some States require you to be age 65 or older
Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans are standardized across 47 states, but Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Massachusetts have implemented their own Medicare Supplement Plans. Many insurers provide benefits beyond what is required by CMS and the 50 states.
No matter which state you live in, or which Medicare Supplement Plan you choose, you will have the ability to see any doctor who accepts Medicare patients.
Benefits Provided By Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans
Medicare Supplement Insurance policies issued by Mutual of Omaha or its subsidiaries come with the following benefits (may vary by state):
- 30-day free look period
- Household discounts up to 12% for multiple policyholders in the same home
- No annual policy fee
- Initial 12-month rate lock-in
- Highly-rated customer service and claims processing
How Much Do Mutual of Omaha Supplement Insurance Plans Cost?
Since Medicare Supplement Insurance Plans are issued by private insurance companies, each company sets its own premiums (subject to regulatory approval). Mutual of Omaha premiums may be based on any or all of the following:
- Age at issue
- Age at renewal each year
- Tobacco use
- Which standardized plan chosen (more comprehensive plans, like F, cost more)
- Expected versus anticipated claims paid (actuarial experience)
Medigap companies are able to adjust premiums periodically, and generally do so on a yearly basis. Premiums are generally less expensive the younger you are, and increase with your age, although other factors can also affect premiums.
Which Medicare Supplement Plans Does Mutual of Omaha Offer?
Mutual of Omaha offers all the standardized Medicare Supplement Plans specified by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the fifty states, although they don’t offer them all in every state.
The three most popular plans, F, G, and N, are summarized below.
Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Plan F
Plan F is frequently called “Plan Fabulous” because of its rich benefits. Plan F provides the following benefits:
- 100% coverage of both Part A and B deductible
- 365 extra lifetime hospital days (beyond Original Medicare)
- First 3 pints of blood (Original Medicare covers anything beyond this)
- Part A hospice care co-insurance or co-payment
- Full coverage of excess charges
- 100% of Medicare Part B charges (Beneficiaries are normally responsible for 20% of Part B expenses under Original Medicare).
- Nursing home coverage
- Emergency coverage while travelling internationally, up to Plan limits
Plan F is the first choice for people who want to know they have the most comprehensive coverage, and don’t mind paying a higher premium for that peace of mind.
Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Plan G
Plan G is almost identical to Plan F, except that Plan G doesn’t cover the Part B deductible. Beneficiaries must pay the first $185 (2019 amount, subject to yearly adjustment by CMS) out of pocket for Part B services.
Beginning in 2020, Plan G will have the most comprehensive benefits available in a Medicare Supplement Insurance policy. For 2019, Plan G is an excellent fit for Beneficiaries who want comprehensive coverage, but at a lower premium than Plan F.
Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Plan N
Plan N is different from Plans F and G, while still offering much of the same benefits. This Plan closes the Part B coverage gap by using small co-pays like you are probably used to from employer-based health insurance:
- $20 copay for office visits
- $50 co-pay for emergency visits
- NO coverage of Part B excess-charges (fees from physicians who don’t accept official Medicare prices. These charges cannot exceed 15% of the Medicare-approved amount).
If you don’t mind paying the small co-payments, and can keep a handle on excess charges, Plan N can give you very good coverage for significantly less than Plans F or G.
Mutual of Omaha’s Plans are Guaranteed Renewable every year, which means your coverage cannot be cancelled (as long as you make the required premium payments).
Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Plans C, F, and HDF – Update for 2020
Plans C, F, and High Deductible F will no longer be available for Beneficiaries who become eligible for Medicare after January 1, 2020. Any Beneficiary who already has Plan C, F, or High Deductible F will not be affected by this change in the law.
In fact, all Beneficiaries who are eligible before January 1, 2020 have a protected right to enroll in these Plans in the future, even if they are not currently enrolled in Plans C, F, or HDF. Underwriting may apply, however, if no Guaranteed Issue Right exits.
Also in 2020, a new Medigap Plan becomes available: High Deductible Plan G (HDG). HDG will work just like regular Plan G except it will have a deductible of $2,180. The Plan will pay 100% of covered expenses after you meet the deductible.
Switching from One Supplement Insurance Plan to Another
It can be difficult to switch from one Medicare Supplement Plan to another, whether from one insurance company to another, or from one Plan to another (say from Plan G to Plan N).
Most people have a Guaranteed Issue Right, which means you cannot be denied coverage, within the first six months of your initial eligibility for Medicare.
If you don’t enroll in Medicare Supplement Insurance during this window, but decide you want a Medigap Plan later, you will be subject to medical underwriting, and you can be declined for coverage.
There are some states, like California, that have a provision called the “Birthday Rule” which lets you change Plan type once per year, as long as you stay with the same company. For example, you could switch from Plan A to N once per year without underwriting.
Check with your state’s Insurance Commission, or talk to an independent health insurance agent to see if your state offers this benefit, since not all States do.
How to Enroll in a Mutual of Omaha Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan
Enrolling in a Medicare Supplement Insurance Plan with Mutual of Omaha is very simple. Using an independent agent, you can enroll:
- Over the phone
- With a paper application, face to face, or through the mail