Health Care & Benefits Division

Pre-Retirement Information

 

Resources 

 

Benefits in Retirement


The following chart gives you an outline of your State Plan coverage options in retirement. It shows what’s required, what’s optional, and what benefits you are not eligible for as a retiree.

  Non-Medicare (Under 65) Medicare Eligible (Over 65) Dependents
Medical/Prescription Required Required Optional*
Dental Required Optional Optional if retiree has dental coverage
Basic Life Required May convert Not Eligible
Life Plans B, C, & D May convert May convert Not Eligible
Accidental Death & Dismemberment Not Eligible Not Eligible Not Eligible
Vision Hardware Optional Optional Optional if retiree has vision hardware coverage
Flexible Spending Option to prepay for rest of year in which you retire Option to prepay for rest of year in which you retire Not Eligible
Long Term Disability Not Eligible Not Eligible Not Eligible

 

Pre-Pay Retiree Health Care Benefits Payments from Final Pay Check
If you are enrolled in the pre-tax plan, you can have your retiree benefits payments withheld from your final paycheck on a pre-tax basis through the end of the year in which you retire.
To take advantage of this option, contact your agency payroll person prior to your last day of work. The forms to be completed are:

  • Retiree Statement of Current Coverage;
  • Pre-Payment Option Form;
  • Life Enrollment/Change form (only complete this if you are NOT Medicare eligible);
  • Beneficiary Designation form (only complete this if you are NOT Medicare eligible).

If you are a member of a VEBA group, you may not pre-pay with leave balances designated as VEBA contributions.

 

65 Years or Older at Retirement
If you or your spouse are 65 years of age or older at time of retirement, contact Social Security to inquire about enrollment for Medicare Part B.

If you are or your spouse are currently enrolled in Medicare Part A & B, provide HCBD a copy of your Medicare card to reduce your benefits payments.

 

Life Insurance at Retirement
If you are continuing on the State’s plan and are not Medicare eligible, basic life (Plan A) coverage of $14,000 will continue.

If you are Medicare eligible, you do not have the option to continue the basic life coverage of $14,000.

Optional employee life, dependent life, and spouse life are available for conversion or portability. Contact Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana (BCBSMT) at  (866) 739-4090 for details and cost. You must apply in writing and pay the first premium directly to BCBSMT within 31 days after the date your employment terminates. 

  • If you are under 65 and choose to continue on the State’s benefit plan as a retiree, you have the option to convert this coverage to a whole life policy.
  • If you are under 65 and DO NOT choose to continue the State’s benefit plan as a retiree, you have the option to port your life insurance and pay a similar rate. Click for more information about porting or converting coverage

 

Grandfather Month
If you were hired prior to (and enrolled in benefits) and have had no break in coverage since August 1998, you are entitled to an additional month of state share contribution upon termination. If your monthly benefit deductions exceed the state share, HCBD will withhold this amount from your final check. If the total amount is less than state share, HCBD will withhold nothing. Contact Health Care and Benefits Division to find out if you are eligible for the additional month of state share.

This additional month of coverage only extends to medical, dental, vision, and life insurance.
Flexible spending accounts will end the last day of the month in which full or partial benefits contributions have been paid.

Long-term disability ends the last day of the month in which full or partial premium is paid.

 

Montana Voluntary Employees' Beneficiary Association (VEBA)
If you are a member of a Montana VEBA group, contact your payroll resource to fill out the following forms before you leave: 

  • Enrollment Packet
  • Systematic Payment Form – if you are continuing on the State's plan

If you are not currently in a VEBA group and are interested in being part of a group, visit montanaveba.mt.gov or contact HCBD or your payroll/HR staff for more details.

 

Montana Public Employees Retirement
As a member of the Defined Benefit Retirement Plan, when you are ready to retire, follow these steps:

  • 2- 6 months before you plan to retire, contact MPERA for an official Defined Benefit Estimate Request. The estimate will give you an approximate amount of your monthly benefit and allow you to plan your retirement accordingly.
  • 30-90 days before you plan to retire, complete the retirement forms that accompanied your benefit estimate and return them to MPERA.
    • PERS Retirement Form
    • PERS Application for Service Retirement Form
    • Direct Deposit Agreement
    • Withholding Certificate

Remember to inform your employer of your retirement. 

If you have questions, contact MPERA at (406) 444-3154, (877) 275-7372, or mpera.mt.gov.

 

457(b) Deferred Compensation Plan

Contact Empower Retirement at (877) 699-4015 or visit mperadcplans.com for more information and to login to you account. 

 

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