Medicare enrollment can be tricky because people new to Medicare are not always aware of the proper enrollment periods. For example, you may not have been aware that each person has a 7-month initial enrollment window for Medicare. If you miss it, you may have to wait until the next enrollment period, and also pay late penalties to be enrolled.
Boomer Benefits can help you understand and navigate the Medicare enrollment maze. The first step is in determining whether you meet the Medicare eligibility requirements. For most people that starts at age 65. Those who have been entitled to Social Security disability for at least 24 months also qualify.
Your Medicare Eligibility date is not the same as your Social Security date. You can apply for full retirement income benefits at age 66. However, this does not affect the age at which you qualify for Medicare. Every person who has worked at least 40 quarters, (10 years) in the US during their lifetime can qualify for Medicare then they reach the age of 65. If your spouse has legally worked for at least 10 years in the US, you may also qualify, even if your spouse is deceased.
If you have not worked the Medicare enrollment Eeigibility minimum, Part A may be available for you to purchase. You can contact Social Security to find out what the cost is for you. If you’re required to purchase Part A, coverage can cost over $400 per month. For those who have worked over 30 hours but less than 40 hours, there are often partial premiums available.
Medicare enrollment timing depends alot on whether you still have access to group insurance. There is no single ‘right’ time for all people. For example, your initial enrollment period (IEP) when you turn 65 is the right time for you to enroll in Medicare if you will not have any coverage from active employment. Your IEP will last for seven months, the 4th month being the one in which you will turn 65. The exception is if your birthday falls on the first of the month, in which case your IEP will move forward by one month (earlier).
However, if you are still working and have employer group insurance, you may decide to delay your Medicare enrollment until later. Since Part B has a monthly premium associated with it, you can save money by delaying it until you leave that employer coverage and transition to Medicare as your primary insurance.
If you qualify for Medicare through disability, you are entitled to Medicare enrollment under the age of 65. The fourth month of your IEP, you should receive your 25th disability payment. Social Security will contact you to let you know when your Medicare coverage begins. You will receive a second IEP when you turn 65, however your coverage will seamless continue without having to reapply.
There will be a Special medicare Enrollment Period (SEP) if you delayed receiving medicare at 65 due to receiving health insurance from an employer. Contact Boomer Benefits for more information about this special circumstance. It's important to code your Medigap and Part D applications properly when you finally do enroll so that you don't get stuck with a penalty by mistake.
Boomer Benefits is your one-source agency to provide you with comprehensive coverage information so you can make a better decision regarding your Medicare coverage. If you’d like to speak with an agent from Boomer Benefits about Medicare enrollment, call 855-732-9055.