Are Health Sharing Plans Worth the Risk?

Have you considered a medi-share or health sharing plan in retirement? Shary asks why I’ve never mentioned them before. So on this episode, I open up and share what a health sharing ministry is and how I feel about them. Our second listener question comes from Don who asks about owning company stock in retirement. Both of these are excellent questions so listen in to hear the answers.

 Have you considered a medi-share or health sharing plan in retirement?  Share on X

Outline of This Episode

  • [1:12] Shary asks about medi-sharing
  • [7:12] What is my opinion of health sharing ministries?
  • [9:44] How can company stock be accounted for inside a retirement plan?

What is a health sharing plan?

Health sharing plans have been around awhile. They came about in the early ’80s as a Christian ministry option for sharing resources to cover health care costs. They are also often referred to as medi-share. These health sharing plans have thousands of members that pool their money together each month to share the costs of major medical expenses. People liken the monthly fee to a premium, but it is important to remember that these are not insurance plans and shouldn’t be confused with them. They are a substitute for health insurance. 

A health sharing plan is not the same as health insurance.  Share on X

What are the downfalls of medi-sharing?

Since these are health ministries they can limit who they choose to allow to participate based on religious ideas. They can also modify and exclude coverage. These plans will cap your lifetime benefit amount and exclude preexisting conditions. Insurance companies are not allowed to do any of those modifications. Another downfall is if you use a health sharing ministry you are considered uninsured in the eyes of the government. This means you won’t have some of the health benefit options offered by the government like health savings accounts and you won’t be able to use health premium tax credits for these health sharing plans. 

What do I think about health ministries?

People who plan to retire early often struggle with the health insurance question. What should you do about health insurance until Medicare kicks in? It is an obstacle for many who wish to retire early. Medi-sharing can seem like a good solution to this problem. Although I like the idea behind health sharing plans, I do not recommend them to my clients. Since there are unlimited risks involved I feel it is too risky a gamble to take so early on in retirement. What do you think? Would you consider a health sharing plan?

People who plan to retire early often struggle with the health insurance question. What should you do about health insurance until Medicare kicks in? Share on X

How can company stock be accounted for inside a retirement plan?

Company stock is a common component of many people’s retirement. The most important thing about holding company stock is to make sure that you aren’t taking undue risk by having too much of it in your portfolio. There are 2 risks to consider in this case. The main risk is that your portfolio is not diversified enough. The less obvious risk that you may not have thought of is that you are investing where you get your paycheck from. How much company stock do you have as a part of your portfolio? Listen in to hear what I think is the ideal amount of company stock to hold in your portfolio.

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