Frequently Asked Questions
When is the Best Time to Enroll in Medicare?
The best time to enroll in Original Medicare is as soon as you become eligible. As we mentioned above, your Initial Enrollment Period is unique to your 65th birthday, which means your IEP only happens once – unless you’re Medicare-eligible due to disability, in which case it happens again when you turn 65. If you miss your enrollment period, you’ll have to wait until Medicare’s General Enrollment Period. If you have health insurance through your employer, you can delay enrolling in Parts A and B, without facing a late enrollment penalty if you enroll later. Large group insurance with 20 or more employees counts as creditable coverage.
What Documents Do I Need to Enroll in Medicare?
Medicare enrollment is based on several individual factors, including if a person receives Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board benefits. You can apply for Medicare online, by phone, or in person, but be prepared to present additional documentation. For instance, if you’re applying for Original Medicare, you need your Social Security card, proof of citizenship, and birth certificate.
Do I Need Supplemental Medicare Insurance?
Medicare doesn’t cover everything, which is why you should consider choosing Medigap coverage. These policies offer additional coverage for deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments. Medicare pays its portion first, while your Medigap coverage acts as secondary insurance and pays the remaining costs. It’s important to remember these plans come with a monthly premium that you must pay along with your Part B premium.
Medicare Part D Enrollment
Medicare Part D plans are prescription drug plans. They help pay for brand-name and generic prescription drugs that Parts A and B don’t cover. While Part D isn’t mandatory, your premium will be higher the longer you’ve gone without it. Just like Original Medicare, it’s best to sign up when you first become eligible during your Initial Enrollment Period.