Medicare eligibility is complicated, but we simplify it. Hi, I'm Roxanne with RetireMed and I'm going to talk to you about Medicare eligibility in one minute.
So, how do you become eligible for Medicare? You become eligible for Medicare in basically two ways. Number one, when you turn 65. You have three months prior to your 65th birthday and it continues three months after your 65th birthday.
And I get asked all the time, "Do I have to sign up at 65?", and you don't. If you have any questions, that's what we're here for. But once you do qualify for Medicare, and you're eligible, you remain eligible for the rest of your life.
You can also become eligible for Medicare under 65 if you have a qualifying disability. That could be something like End-Stage-Renal-Disease, Lou Gehrig's Disease, or another qualifying condition.
Again, you do not have to be 65 if you qualify through a disability. If you have questions, you can click the link below at no cost, to check your eligibility.
The short answer: No.
You can enroll once you meet the age requirement for Medicare at age 65. In fact, your Medicare enrollment window begins three months before you turn 65.
However, some individuals may qualify for benefits without meeting the age requirement for Medicare. For example, an End-Stage Renal Disease diagnosis may qualify you for Medicare at any age.
Working past age 65 is a common occurrence among Baby Boomers. Luckily, your working status has no impact on your Medicare eligibility once you turn 65.
You can continue to work and enjoy the benefits of Medicare. Medicare may even be more cost-effective than your employer coverage. Plus, you can use the health savings account (HSA) funds you saved to pay for your health care costs even after you switch to Medicare.
If you work for a company with fewer than 20 employees, you’ll be required to enroll in Original Medicare (Parts A and B) once you become eligible. This is true regardless of your retirement plans. Thus, you would have Medicare Part A and Part B coverage along with your employer coverage. In this situation, it is typically more cost-effective for you to switch to a Medicare Advantage plan vs. staying on your group coverage with Original Medicare.
Medicare plans do not allow dependents like employer plans do. This means if your spouse is currently covered by your employer benefits, he or she will have to make arrangements to secure health coverage when you transition to Medicare.
If both you and your spouse meet the age requirement for Medicare, switching to Medicare together is often your most practical option. Depending on your individual health care needs, you can each choose a plan that works for you. Our advisors make it easy to compare options.
He or she has two options for getting covered when you transition to Medicare. They can:
Our advisors are here to assist your spouse in finding an individual health insurance policy, which can bridge the gap until he or she meets the age requirement for Medicare.
Meeting the age requirement for Medicare is just the beginning. Whether you’re wondering, “Do I have to retire to enroll in Medicare?” or want to ask other Medicare questions, our regional Medicare advisors are here to give you answers.
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