No. of Recommendations: 2
Hi Alstro,

Sounds like a good list of questions to me. In my case (we retired at age 49) we had no medical insurance options other than pay, so I didn't need to cover those questions.

On pension, it took me 4 to 5 months to get benefits to start arriving once I started the process. So your questions about the specific mechanics of initiating a pension seem appropriate and important. In our case, we both had two pensions to collect. On review, we decided to both take them with no survivor options so we could maximize our benefits assuming we both live to about the same age. If we both live to age 88 and die, it will look like a brilliant decision. If I get hit by a bus tomorrow and SGSpouse lives to age 99, she might wish we chose otherwise. Our pensions were not COLA'd, so waiting to a later age to collect a higher amount didn't make sense if we assumed we would live at least to age 65. The non-COLA aspect of the pensions also helped make the decision not to take lower benefits in exchange for survivor benefits. Our pensions will become less and less important as we age and they don't inflate.

Of course your experience and specifics are likely to be very different than my own, but those are the things I juggled when deciding these things if they are any help.

Sorry to hear of your husband's micro-strokes and speech problems. I hope retirement is very good to both of you.
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