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Signing Up For Medicare Benefits

I Want To Sign Up For Only Part A Or Both Part A & Part B

Medicare Sign Up | How to Enroll in Medicare

Once youre eligible to sign up for Medicare , you have 2 options:

  • Sign up to get only Medicare coverage.
  • Apply to start getting benefits from Social Security . Once youre approved to start getting benefits, youll automatically get Part A coverage. Youll choose if you want Part B coverage when you apply for benefits.
  • Once you sign up , youll get a welcome package with your Medicare card.

    Medicare Enrollment Periods What Are The Enrollment Months For Medicare

    For most people, enrolling in Medicare Part A is automatic. However, there are several instances where you may have to manually enroll in Medicare Part A and/or Part B during your Initial Enrollment Period , the seven-month period that begins three months before you turn 65, includes the month of your 65th birthday, and ends three months later.

    Some situations where you would enroll in during your initial Medicare open enrollment include:

    Initial Enrollment Period â The IEP is for enrolling in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, but you can generally enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan, Medicare prescription drug plan, or Medicare Supplement insurance plan during this period. The dates for this period depend on when you become eligible for Medicare. The IEP is usually a 7-month window.

    General Enrollment Period : If you did not enroll during the IEP when you were first eligible, you can enroll during the General Enrollment Period. This is another opportunity to enroll in Medicare Part A and/or Part B, from January 1 â March 31 each year. Keep in mind that you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty for Medicare Part A and/or Part B if you did not sign up when you were first eligible.

    Annual Election Period: You can change your coverage in several ways . It runs October 15 â December 7 annually.

    Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period: If you already have a Medicare Advantage plan, you can change plans during this period.

    How To Sign Up For Medicare In 3 Easy Steps

    If youre turning 65 soon, your chance to enroll in a Medicare plan is right around the corner.

    Some people are automatically enrolled in Original Medicare, while others will need to sign up for it.

    Here are some simple steps to help guide you through eligibility, coverage options and more, so you can easily get started with Medicare.

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    Dont Register For Medicare Alone

    No one should have to enroll in Medicare alone. Licensed Medicare agents are available to you at no additional cost to help you enroll in the right plan and clear any confusion you may have. If youre uncomfortable with applying for Medicare, we can help!

    When enrolling, an agent who understands different Medicare plan types and the coverage associated with Medicare is essential. Plus, when you enroll through an agent, you will never have to pay a fee or be charged extra for your monthly premium. Agents are paid directly by insurance companies.

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    If You Are Turning 65 And Retired:

    Beware the curveballs of signing up for Medicare Part B and Medigap ...

    If you are no longer an active employee, you should sign up for Medicare Parts A and B as soon as you are eligible. Medicare pays your eligible medical expenses and your state insurance pays secondary. If you do not enroll in Medicare, you will pay most or all of the amount that Medicare would have paid. If you delay enrollment in Medicare, SSA may also assess a late enrollment penalty if you attempt to enroll at a later date.

    Once youve enrolled in Medicare

    Call ERS to provide us with the information located on your Medicare ID card. ERS will confirm your enrollment in Medicare Parts A and B and start the process to enroll you in the HealthSelectSM Medicare Advantage Plan, preferred provider organization , administered by UnitedHealthcare.

    Important: Until ERS receives your Medicare information, we cannot begin the process to enroll you in HealthSelect MA PPO. Plan ahead: The process can take 30 to 60 days before your HealthSelect MA PPO coverage begins. During this time, you will be enrolled in HealthSelectSM Secondary. If you need to access medical benefits while enrolled in HealthSelect Secondary, you will be charged a $200 deductible.HealthSelect MA PPO is a Medicare Part C plan that combines Medicare Parts A and B with your state health insurance. It provides additional group benefits you may not receive with Medicare alone and covers most or all of your medical expenses.

    If you dont provide your Medicare information to ERS

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    When Your Coverage Starts

    The date your coverage starts depends on which month you sign up during your Initial Enrollment Period. Coverage always starts on the first of the month.

    If you qualify for Premium-free Part A: Your Part A coverage starts the month you turn 65.

    Part B : Coverage starts based on the month you sign up:

    If you sign up:

    1 month after you turn 65

    In 2022: 2 months after you sign up

    Starting January 1, 2023: the next month

    2 or 3 months after you turn 65

    In 2022: 3 months after you sign up

    Starting January 1, 2023: the next month

    Already Enrolled In Medicare

    If you have Medicare, you can get information and services online. Find out how to .

    If you are enrolled in Medicare Part A and you want to sign up for Part B, please complete form CMS-40B, Application for Enrollment in Medicare Part B . If you are applying for Medicare Part B due to a loss of employment or group health coverage, you will also need to complete form CMS-L564, Request for Employment Information.

    You can use one of the following options to submit your enrollment request under the Special Enrollment Period:

  • Fax or mail your CMS-40B, CMS-L564, and secondary evidence to your local Social Security office .
  • Note: When completing the forms CMS-40B and CMS-L564:

    • State I want Part B coverage to begin in the remarks section of the CMS-40B form or online application.
    • If possible, your employer should complete Section B.
    • If your employer is unable to complete Section B, please complete that portion as best as you can on their behalf and submit one of the following forms of secondary evidence:
      • Income tax form that shows health insurance premiums paid.
      • W-2s reflecting pre-tax medical contributions.
      • Pay stubs that reflect health insurance premium deductions.
      • Health insurance cards with a policy effective date.
      • Explanations of benefits paid by the GHP or LGHP.
      • Statements or receipts that reflect payment of health insurance premiums.

    Some people with limited resources and income may also be able to get .

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    If You Already Have Prescription Drug Coverage

    If you already have , you may be able to keep it without the risk of paying a late enrollment penalty if you decide to enroll in a Medicare prescription drug plan later.

    Your options differ, depending on which type of existing drug coverage you have:

    • Current employer plan, union plan or retiree plan
    • TRICARE, Department of Veterans Affairs or the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program

    If you are covered by a current employer, union or retiree plan and are about to become eligible for Medicare, you should receive a notice from the company explaining how your benefits will change and what your options are regarding Medicare Part D. If you are about to become eligible for Medicare and have not received a notice or did not understand the notice you received, call your former employer or the company that processes your claims.

    If at some point in the future your employer, union or retiree plan stops offering prescription drug coverage, you will be able to join a Medicare drug plan without penalty as long as you join that plan within 63 days of the end of your current coverage.

    Note: Keep any letter or notice from your employer, union or retiree plan stating that your prescription drug coverage is creditable to use for documentation if you apply for Part D drug coverage at a later time.

    Talk to your plans benefits administrator to get more information. If your benefits are not creditable, you may still be able to:

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    Confirm Your Eligibility To Enroll

    Medicare & You: Deciding to Sign Up for Medicare Part B

    Original Medicare is available to people:

    • Age 65 or older
    • Younger than 65 with a qualifying disability
    • With end-stage renal disease permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or a kidney transplant

    To get an estimate of when youre eligible for Medicare and your premium amount, use Medicare.govs Eligibility & Premium Calculator .

    Note: If you already get benefits from Social Security, youll get Medicare Part A and Part B automatically when youre first eligible. If you live in Puerto Rico, youll only get Part A automatically and will need to sign up for Part B if you want it.

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    Sign Up: Within 8 Months After Your Family Member Stops Working

    • If you have Medicare due to a disability or ALS , youll already have Part A .
    • Youll pay a monthly premium for Part B , so you may want to wait to sign up for Part B.

    Avoid the penalty & gap in coverageIf you miss this 8-month Special Enrollment Period, youll have to wait to sign up and go months without coverage. You might also pay a monthly penalty until you turn 65. The penalty goes up the longer you wait to sign up. How much is the Part B late enrollment penalty?

    I Didnt Sign Up For Part B When I First Became Eligible But Want To Sign Up Now I Know There Is A Penalty For Late Enrollment Is There Any Way To Avoid The Penalty

    Generally, no. In most cases, if you missed your Part B enrollment window, which runs from the three months before the month of your 65th birthday through the three months after the month of your 65th birthday, you will face a late enrollment penalty once you do enroll, which will be added to your premium costs for the remainder of your enrollment. The penalty equals 10% of the standard monthly premium for each 12-month period that you delayed enrollment.

    If you did not enroll for Part B during your initial enrollment period, you may qualify for a Special Enrollment Period to sign up for Part B anytime as long as you or a spouse is working and youre covered by a group health plan through that employment. For people age 65 or over who have coverage through a group health plan, there is also an 8-month SEP which starts the month after the employment ends or the group health plan coverage ends. If you sign up during an SEP, the late enrollment penalty will not apply.

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    Does Medicare Cover The Costs Of Diabetic Supplies

    Yes, Medicare does cover certain supplies if you have diabetes. Part B covered supplies include blood sugar self-testing equipment and supplies, insulin pumps, and therapeutic shoes or inserts. To get Medicare drug coverage, you must join a Medicare prescription drug plan. These plans typically cover insulin, anti-diabetic drugs, and certain diabetes supplies such as syringes and needles. The Medicare Coverage of Diabetes Supplies and Services booklet provides a comprehensive look what diabetes related services are covered.

    How Do I Enroll In A Medicare Supplement Plan

    When You Should Sign Up for Medicare

    Medicare Supplement Insurance plans are one health insurance option for people with Original Medicare. There are standardized Medicare supplement insurance plans available that are designed to fill the gaps left by Original Medicare . These are sold by private insurance companies as individual insurance policies and are regulated by the Department of Insurance. After age 65 and for the first six months of eligibility for Medicare Part B, beneficiaries have an Open Enrollment Period and are guaranteed the ability to buy any of these plans from any company that sells them. Companies cannot deny coverage or charge more for current or past health problems. If you fail to apply for a Medicare supplement within your Open Enrollment Period, you may lose the right to purchase a Medicare supplement policy without regard to your health. Information about the Medicare supplement plans sold in North Carolina is available from SHIIP by calling us toll-free at 1-855-408-1212.

    Use our free tool to find estimated premium rates.

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    What It Means To Pay Primary/secondary

    • The insurance that pays first pays up to the limits of its coverage.
    • The one that pays second only pays if there are costs the primary insurer didnt cover.
    • The secondary payer may not pay all the remaining costs.
    • If your group health plan or retiree coverage is the secondary payer, you may need to enroll in Medicare Part B before theyll pay.

    If the insurance company doesnt pay the

    promptly , your doctor or other provider may bill Medicare. Medicare may make a conditional payment to pay the bill, and then later recover any payments the primary payer shouldve made.

    Are You Required To Sign Up For Medicare Part D

    You are not required to enroll in a Medicare Part D plan unless you are dual-eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. If you receive low-income subsidies, you are enrolled automatically in a Part D plan if you dont choose one on your own.

    Suppose you choose not to enroll in a Part D plan when first eligible. If you dont have creditable drug coverage that is at least as good as standard Part D coverage, you could pay a late enrollment penalty if you enroll later. This penalty will be added to your premium as long as you have Part D coverage.

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    When To Enroll In Medicare If I Am Receiving Retirement Benefits:

    If youre already collecting Railroad Retirement Board or Social Security retirement benefits when you turn 65, you will automatically be enrolled Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B if you sign up for Medicare Part B at the time you sign up for retirement benefits.

    If you live outside of the 50 United States or D.C. , you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare Part A, but will need to manually enroll in Medicare Part B.

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    Open Enrollment Period For Part D

    Medicare: Signing Up with the Social Security Administration

    You can make including your Part D prescription drug planduring the Medicare Annual Election Period . This is sometimes called the Open Enrollment Period or Fall Open Enrollment. It runs from Oct. 15 to Dec. 7 each year. During the Medicare AEP, you can add, switch or drop your Part D coverage. Any changes you make will take effect on Jan. 1 the following year.4

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    When To Sign Up And Apply For Medicare

    Home / FAQs / General Medicare / When to Sign Up and Apply for Medicare

    When you are new to Medicare, you probably have questions regarding when and how to apply for Medicare. Understanding when to sign up for Medicare and knowing the right way to enroll in Medicare coverage is important. Below, we tell you how and when to apply for Medicare.

    Find Medicare Plans in 3 Easy Steps

    We can help find the right Medicare plans for you today

    Your Plan Options And Premiums Will Change

    After you submit proof of Medicare enrollment to STRS Ohio, your STRS Ohio plan options and premiums will change.

    Plans for Medicare enrollees include the Aetna Medicare Plan, the Medical Mutual Basic Plan or a regional plan if available in your area.

    Premiums for the STRS Ohio Medicare plans are lower than the non-Medicare plans. Also, premiums for benefit recipients enrolled in an STRS Ohio Medicare plan have been reduced by a $30 Medicare Part B premium credit.

    You can review your new plan options and premiums in your Online Personal Account or call STRS Ohio for this information.

    Note: If you are not currently enrolled in an STRS Ohio plan, initial eligibility for and enrollment in Medicare is a qualifying event that allows you to add STRS Ohio coverage outside of open enrollment. You can enroll in a plan through your Online Personal Account.

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    You Can Sign Up For Medicare Part D During Fall Open Enrollment

    You can generally sign up for Medicare Part D and make other changes during this period. Sometimes called the Fall Annual Enrollment Period, Part D enrollment happens each year from October 15 to December 7. During this time, you can usually make the following changes during the AEP:

  • Sign up for a stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan
  • Change from one stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan to another
  • Sign up for a Medicare Advantage prescription drug plan
  • Change from one Medicare Advantage plan to another
  • This Is The Reason Why

    Nearing age 65? What you need to know about Medicare

    Most people outlive their retirement savings and studies show were living longer than previous generations. With this in mind, we need to prepare for a longer retirement period.

    That means if you can delay receiving benefits past age 65, you would receive a higher monthly payment. For most folks, that higher monthly payment would kick in around the time their personal savings has been exhausted.

    Although youre evaluating your life expectancy, you need would do well to keep in mind the life expectancy of your spouse. Especially if that spouse plans to collect Social Security Income based on your benefits.

    If your spouse plans to make a claim for Social Security Income based on their own benefits, then this is a moot point your spouse would need to make these same decisions that you now face.

    The short and skinny, there is no right or wrong answer. Its never too soon to start considering your personal situation and begin evaluating where you are in life right now measure that against how you want to live when you retire.

    Every person is unique, and you need to weigh your options before deciding. Take heed of the call to action sang by the band Rush, If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.

    Its a lot to take in and it should take you more than an afternoon to decide if its in your best interest to claim Medicare without claiming your Social Security retirement income.

    When in doubt, break out a pencil and paper and crunch the numbers.

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