Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

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Topic Author
FXDXontherun
Posts: 42
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 12:51 pm

Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by FXDXontherun »

My wife and I switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic last week. There is an $800 per person reimbursement for the Basic plan. We are retired and will not file for SS for another 1.5 years so we will paying the premiums quarterly out of pocket. I have reviewed all the MRA, Medicare Reimbursement Account claim forms and instructions that are accessed at fepblue.org.

My question is, do I file the MRA claim form quarterly? If so do I receive 25%, ($200.00) back in reimbursement per quarter? I've talked to four different people at two different numbers and none of them could do more than read the claim form instructions back to me.

I finally got one person on the line that stated when paying quarterly, ($170.00 per month in 2022 x 3 = $510.00) the first quarter my claim would be for the entire $510.00 and I'd get reimbursed for that entire amount. The 2nd Q I'd pay $510.00 but only get reimbursed for $290.00, (now reimbursed a total of $800.00). I would then receive no additional reimbursements for the 3rd and 4th Q. This makes sense to me.

Can someone that has BCBS Fed Basic and participates in the reimbursement program, and pays out of pocket confirm how this is done.

Thanks.
tallguy3891
Posts: 58
Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2021 10:47 am

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by tallguy3891 »

FXDXontherun wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 4:08 pm My wife and I switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic last week. There is an $800 per person reimbursement for the Basic plan. We are retired and will not file for SS for another 1.5 years so we will paying the premiums quarterly out of pocket. I have reviewed all the MRA, Medicare Reimbursement Account claim forms and instructions that are accessed at fepblue.org.

My question is, do I file the MRA claim form quarterly? If so do I receive 25%, ($200.00) back in reimbursement per quarter? I've talked to four different people at two different numbers and none of them could do more than read the claim form instructions back to me.

I finally got one person on the line that stated when paying quarterly, ($170.00 per month in 2022 x 3 = $510.00) the first quarter my claim would be for the entire $510.00 and I'd get reimbursed for that entire amount. The 2nd Q I'd pay $510.00 but only get reimbursed for $290.00, (now reimbursed a total of $800.00). I would then receive no additional reimbursements for the 3rd and 4th Q. This makes sense to me.

Can someone that has BCBS Fed Basic and participates in the reimbursement program, and pays out of pocket confirm how this is done.

Thanks.
We switched from Standard to Basic a year ago. My wife gets social security with part B taken out so when I finally submitted her form late in the year they sent a check for up to that time of the year and have been sending a check for $66.66 per month ($800 divided by 12) automatically the last 3 months of the year, which I did not ask them to do. I do not get s.s. so I pay quarterly. I submitted my form late in the year and got a chunk for up through Nov., then had to submit another form for my last little bit.

Since I was new to this in the current year I wasn't sure how exactly it worked, but I will say that they process these very quickly. Apparently you can submit at any time during the year, or you can wait until the year is over and submit to get your full sum all at once. I did it just to see how it worked. I think in the future I would probably do it once per year, maybe twice to split it. But, it apparently can be done whenever you want after you have actually made a payment for B.
retiredjg
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:56 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by retiredjg »

I don't pay out of pocket, but I'm not sure it is much different. They will pay you for whatever you show you have already paid for. I just wait until I've paid more than $800 and then send in the form once and a check appears in my checking account pretty soon after that.

The only hiccup I had is I filled in the form wrong once and they didn't notify me. I finally called and was told how to send it in a second time (with the error corrected) and they payment showed up very quickly after that.
Sahara
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Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2018 6:21 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by Sahara »

Just curious, are these reimbursements post tax money?
retiredjg
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Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:56 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by retiredjg »

Hmm. Never thought about that before.

I didn't get a 1099 any of the last few years that I have claimed the $800, so I guess they are post-tax. Makes sense since it is a reimbursement for payments made with post tax money.
Sahara
Posts: 546
Joined: Tue Dec 04, 2018 6:21 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by Sahara »

retiredjg wrote: Tue Nov 23, 2021 8:37 pm Hmm. Never thought about that before.

I didn't get a 1099 any of the last few years that I have claimed the $800, so I guess they are post-tax. Makes sense since it is a reimbursement for payments made with post tax money.
Thank you.
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Info_Hound
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Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by Info_Hound »

I've had the Federal BCBS Basic option in conjunction with Medicare for several years now. However I have the Medicare payment taken from my monthly SS payments.

You can file for reimbursement at any time of the year. I find it convenient to file in January or February when SS sends notice for the year's coming payment and Medicare premiums. I scan the letter in and attach it to the BCBS reimbursement request as proof, even though the $800 has not actually been fully met yet. Like clockwork every month I get a $66.66 deposit to my banking account from them. By the end of the year I have my $800 reimbursement and only filed for it once.

As previously noted, they process claims quickly and there as been no 1099 issued any year I have participated in their reimbursement program.
retiredjg
Posts: 46027
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:56 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by retiredjg »

Info_Hound wrote: Wed Nov 24, 2021 10:14 am I scan the letter in and attach it to the BCBS reimbursement request as proof, even though the $800 has not actually been fully met yet. Like clockwork every month I get a $66.66 deposit to my banking account from them. By the end of the year I have my $800 reimbursement and only filed for it once.
Thanks for posting this. I had no idea they would do it that way.
Topic Author
FXDXontherun
Posts: 42
Joined: Tue Nov 01, 2016 12:51 pm

Re: Switched from BCBS FEHB Standard to Basic, reimbursement question

Post by FXDXontherun »

Thanks for the info all, very helpful.
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