UPDATED: Nov 30, 2018
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Founded in 1922, USAA is a membership-only company that serves members of all branches of the military, veterans, and families of qualifying members as well. The company was founded by a group of army officers who were having difficulty obtaining car insurance and decided to create a mutual insurance fund. By 1928 they had 8,000 members, and the company continued to grow. Their headquarters is located in San Antonio, Texas.
While the requirements for membership have changed over the years, active duty and honorably discharged members of any branch of the military qualify. Their spouses, children, and even divorced or widowed spouses can also qualify if they are not remarried. Cadets and midshipmen also qualify.
USAA pays dividends to members, and added perk of membership, much like any mutual company, but this is limited to certain products only. They have a wide variety of policies available, some of which are underwritten by other companies. That applies to their Medicare plans as well – the company writes Medicare Supplement directly but provides other policy types only through their preferred partners.
USAA Medicare Plans
As mentioned, USAA only writes Supplement policies directly. They can assist members with obtaining Advantage and Part D prescription drug plans through partner companies, but do not actually write them.
Medicare Advantage and Part D
USAA partners with Humana for Medicare Advantage plans. They refer their members to that company but are not a part of underwriting, nor a part of claims handling. Once the policy is taken out, Humana will provide all administration and assistance.
Humana also offers Part D prescription drug coverage. Again, there is no direct involvement from USAA after the policy referral.
USAA offers a range of Medicare Supplement plans using the standardized letter-coded system in most states.
We were unable to obtain a full list of the plans they offer, as you must be a USAA member and log into the customer area of the website in order to see what plans are available.
Since all Medicare Supplement providers must offer Plan A, we know they have this available. This plan covers all coinsurance amounts as well as the first three pints of blood each year. The website also indicates that plans N and F are available, but beyond that, we were unable to confirm any of the other plans.
Plan offerings do vary from state to state, so what is available will differ depending on where you live.
The only Medicare rate we were able to obtain was the sample rate listed on the website for Plan N. This sample is $89 a month, and this is based on a 65-year-old non-smoker living in San Antonio, Texas. This is not our usual sample area, so we are unable to readily compare the rates, but they do seem reasonable.
Further rates can be obtained by contacting USAA directly; if you are a member you can get quotes quickly. Those who qualify for membership but have not yet joined can still get comparison rates by reaching out to USAA for quotes.
Claims information for Medicare Supplement is not available, but as a general rule, they are handled directly with providers. In some cases, the policyholder may need to file a claim with the company for reimbursement.
As mentioned, claims through referral companies will be handled by their claims department, and not with USAA. The insured should check with the issuing company to find out how to file a claim if necessary.
Ratings and Consumer Reviews
Most of the ratings for USAA are not directly related to their Medicare plans since they are primarily a home and auto insurance provider.
USAA has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). There are 1,482 complaints on file in the past three years. Bear in mind that this number includes all of the company’s lines of business and that they are a very large company. Based on the size of the company, this is not a very high complaint ratio, and the BBB rating reflects that.
USAA consistently ranks highly in JD Power studies, but often isn’t ranked against the other companies due to their limiting membership requirements.
We were unable to locate any complaints that are specifically about the USAA Medicare plans. This is a very small portion of their business, and reviews relating to home, auto, and other products do not likely have much bearing on how Medicare Supplement is handled. Overall, however, USAA has an excellent reputation, and that should carry over to the Medicare side of their business as well.
The Bottom Line
USAA is a solid company, and for those who qualify they are known as both an affordable and a reputable insurance company. Without much information on what they actually offer and charge for their coverage, it is hard to compare them to other companies. If you qualify, however, they are always worth contacting for a quote.
For a list of companies that we recommend, visit our Best Insurance Companies page.