New to Medicare
Those new to Medicare often struggle to understand the system at first. There are so many parts and plans with similar letters that it’s difficult to keep track. This isn’t helped by the massive amount of mail new Medicare recipients receive! It’s not uncommon for local clients to bring in a whole bag of mail and ask for our help sorting through it. Check out the information below to help get your started with navigating the Medicare system.
Leaving employer coverage to enroll in Medicare as your primary insurance can be overwhelming. If you follow the correct steps, it is a painless process. The best way to get the most out of Medicare is to plan ahead of time. Our website has most of the information you need about Medicare planning.
First, you should know that you can only enroll in Original Medicare Parts A & B through the Social Security office. Enrollment for other parts and supplemental coverage is done through an insurance agent or agency. Also, if you already get Social Security, the government will enroll you in both Medicare parts. If not, you must enroll.
Here is a rundown of the initial steps:
1. Verify your Medicare eligibility.
2. Research Medicare costs to prepare for what you will pay.
3. Apply for Medicare at a Social Security office or online.
4. Get your red, white, and blue Medicare card. Is it showing both Part A and B? Part B is required if Medicare is your primary insurance.
5. Know your insurance options: Medicare Supplemental Insurance or Medicare Advantage.
6. Get someone on your side by working with an insurance agency like us. Our advice is free and we are always available.
7. Review your coverage annually to ensure you’re getting the best deal.
The steps you take while working may be different. These days, many people work past the age of 65, which means choices such as: should you keep your employer’s coverage and enroll in Medicare as well? Is it cheaper to drop the employer coverage and go with Medicare as primary insurance with a supplement? The answers depend on several factors, including your employer’s size and your share of the premiums. See our Medicare and Employer Coverage page for details.
Every year we get several questions from new Medicare beneficiaries—here are some of the most common:
What age does Medicare start?
Whether or not you receive Social Security benefits, you are eligible for Medicare at 65. In some cases, disability or illness allows for Medicare eligibility before age 65.
Is Medicare mandatory when I turn 65?
It’s not mandatory, but late enrollment is costly without adequate medical coverage from a large employer.
How can I get Medicare?
You can apply for Medicare online in less than ten minutes with Social Security. Medicare is available to anyone regardless of income. Visit the Social Security website and click on the Medicare link.
When is the best time to sign up?
The best time to sign up for Medicare is during your Initial Enrollment Period (a seven-month window during which you should enroll in Part A and Part B to avoid late enrollment penalties).
Our Medicare-certified agents are happy to help you navigate the Medicare system. If you’re interested in discussing Medicare and what will work best for you, contact us or schedule an appointment using our online booking system.