For many, retirement’s been a long time coming. Historically, many people have looked forward to retiring at the age of 65.
Today, however, things have changed. As a result, some people prefer to continue to work. To learn more about what happens if you don’t sign up for Medicare at 65, keep reading.
Are You Automatically Enrolled in Medicare When You Turn 65?
In some instances, yes. For example, Medicare will enroll you for coverage automatically if you’re already receiving Social Security benefits. They may also do so if you receive Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) benefits.
If you receive either benefit, Medicare will most likely enroll you for Part A and Part B coverage automatically. Your insurance will start on the very first day of the month that you turn 65.
If your birth date is the first of the month, however, you’ll receive an extra month’s coverage. Your insurance will start on the first day of the previous month.
Shortly before you’re eligible, you’ll receive a “Welcome to Medicare” package. Before your 65th birthday, about three months in advance, you’ll receive a welcome packet in the mail.
The package will also include your Medicare card. It’s important that you read the complete package carefully.
Also, if you receive disability payments, Medicare will enroll you for Part A and Part B coverage automatically. Alternatively, the agency might enroll you automatically after you receive Social Security or RRB benefits for two years. In this instance, you’ll receive your welcome package three months before the 25th month of receiving your disability benefits.
If this applies to you, however, you’ll need to make some decisions. First, you’ll need to make a choice regarding whether you want to keep Medicare Part B. If so, you’ll need to choose how to access Medicare coverage.
You’ll also need to figure out if you need Medicare prescription coverage. Also, you’ll need to contemplate whether you want, or need, to purchase a Medicare insurance gap policy.
Do I Have to Apply for Medicare?
If you don’t receive benefits from Social Security, you may have to sign up for Medicare. However, there are only certain times when Medicare accepts enrollment.
Also, it might make sense for you to sign up for Medicare part B right away. By signing up for Medicare at 65, you can avoid penalties.
You can also choose how you’ll access Medicare coverage. Also, you may get help with Medicare costs by signing up right away.
Alternatively, you may not have to sign up right away. For instance, if you continue to work and have employer group coverage, you may not need Medicare.
Nevertheless, you can enroll when you turn 65. The enrollment window is seven months long.
It starts three months before your birthday month. Also, it ends three months after the month that you turn 65.
If you don’t sign up on time, you can face a penalty. The penalty is a 10% surcharge on your Medicare part B premium. It lasts for as long as you fail to apply after you become eligible.
There are some instances where it makes sense to enroll, even if you’re still working. For instance, it might make sense to apply if you work for a small employer.
If your employer has less than 20 employees, it’s a good idea to enroll in Medicare Part A and B now. In this case, Medicare will serve as your primary insurer.
If you need to use your work insurance, it may only pay a portion of your medical expenses. In some cases, it may pay nothing at all.
How Do I Sign up for Medicare?
You can apply for Medicare during the initial enrollment period. However, there are also two other ways that you can sign up for coverage.
For instance, you can sign up during special enrollment. This period starts once the initial enrollment period ends.
However, you must meet certain requirements. Typically, you’ll qualify for special enrollment if you’re enrolled in your employer’s group health plan.
You can also enroll in Medicare during general enrollment. You’d sign up during the general enrollment period if you didn’t sign up during the initial enrollment period and don’t qualify for special enrollment.
Most often, you’ll have to pay a late enrollment penalty if you don’t sign up for Medicare Part B during the initial enrollment period. Otherwise, you’ll continue to pay the late enrollment fee for as long as you don’t have coverage.
When the time comes to enroll for Medicare coverage, you’ll have a lot of decisions to make. However, it’s important to figure out what you’re going to do ahead of time. To accomplish this feat, you’ll need to do research.
You could browse the Medicare website in your search for information. However, it’s not always easy to understand government websites.
They’re full of lots of technical information written in small print. Often, the information is hard to read as well as confusing.
Accordingly, figuring out Medicaid can feel like a full-time job. However, it doesn’t have to prove that challenging.
Get Free Help Signing up for Medicare!
Now you know more about how to sign up for Medicare. However, the original Medicare plan has considerable gaps in coverage.
Without the right supplemental insurance, you could find yourself left paying thousands of dollars of unexpected medical bills. However, there’s help.
Medicare On Video can help you to find affordable supplement plans to protect you from out-of-pocket expenses. The programs can also provide you with added benefits such as dental, vision, and prescription coverage.
If figuring out Medicare enrollment makes you feel overwhelmed, Medicare On Video is here to help. Our licensed agents will gladly guide you through the enrollment process if needed. Best of all, the entire service is free.
Contact a knowledgeable Medicare On Video representative today at (877) 855-3484 or connect with us online to get started.