Medicare Insurance Guide
(4-Page – PDF Download)
This Medicare Insurance Guide will help you determine what to do FIRST when it comes time to enroll in Medicare Insurance. Use it to help you know what questions to ask when choosing your Health Insurance plan through Medicare. It’s got some wonderful questions about your coverage, some things to think through about making sure it meets your needs (and what to anticipate when it comes to choosing a good insurance plan). Plus questions you’ll need to ask about your network benefits, too. This Medicare Insurance Guide also has a great framework to follow, called The “10 Essentials” for Healthcare Navigation. Use it as a resource to help you make your choice count and get the most out of the Healthcare System while using the least of it.
MEDICARE INSURANCE GUIDE
Where do you start?
Here’s how to plan ahead for Medicare
When do you need to sign-up for Medicare?
Medicare is Health Insurance for people 65 years or older. You’ve got a 7-month window of time when you can sign-up for Medicare. So it’s important to be in the know. Learn what you must do during your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP). You become eligible to sign-up for Medicare 3 months before you turn 65, the month you actually turn 65, and the 3 months afterwards.
If you’re not already getting Social Security, then you won’t be automatically enrolled, and you’ll have to sign-up by yourself. If you plan to keep working or have employer health coverage through a spouse, you’ll have some options to consider before signing up for Medicare, so be sure you get some help because it can be confusing. For example:
- If an employer has 20 or more employees, generally you can choose to delay Medicare enrollment, drop your employer coverage for Medicare, or have both Medicare and employer coverage.
- If an employer has fewer than 20 employees, generally you will need to enroll in Medicare during your Initial Enrollment Period.
- If you have health coverage through a spouse’s employer, what you can do will depend on the employer’s rules. You may be able to delay or you may need to enroll at age 65.
What happens if you miss your Initial Enrollment Period?
Enrolling in Medicare late may mean that you’ll have to pay late penalties. Yep, there’s a downside to enrolling after your Initial Enrollment Period. Depending on your situation (example: if you have creditable coverage that qualified you to delay or not), you may have to pay late enrollment penalties for Medicare Part A, Part B and/or Part D.
If you miss your IEP for Medicare enrollment, you can still enroll. You will enroll during what is known as the Medicare General Enrollment Period. The General Enrollment Period happens every year, January 1 – March 31. During this time, you will enroll in Medicare Part A and Part B and your coverage will begin on July 1 of the same year.
You may also be eligible to next enroll in a Medicare Advantage (Part C) plan or Part D prescription drug plan between April 1 and June 30 of the same year.
And if you want a Medicare Advantage plan, you will need to enroll in both Parts A and B first.
Sound confusing? It sure can be.
Use this guide to help you know what questions to ask when choosing your new Health Insurance plan through Medicare. It’s got some wonderful questions about your coverage, some things think through about your needs (what you anticipate needed in a good insurance plan), and questions about your network benefits, too.
This Medicare Insurance Guidebook also have a great framework to follow, called The “10 Essentials” for Healthcare Navigation. Use this resource to help you make your choice count and get the most out of the Healthcare System while using the least of it.