Burchfield Insurance Group is ready to help you apply for Medicare. We know preparing for the transition to Medicare can be somewhat overwhelming, but we have the experience and knowledge to assist you every step of the way.
You are eligible and entitled to Medicare once you reach the age of 65, if you are a United States Citizen or have been a permanent legal resident for the previous five years. Medicare is also available for some individuals under the age of 65 with specific disabilities. While those receiving Social Security Disability are eligible for Medicare following a two year waiting period, individuals suffering with permanent kidney failure (end-stage renal disease) and ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or Lou Gehrig’s disease) can bypass the waiting period.
For those already receiving Social Security benefits at 65, Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) and Part B (medical insurance) enrollment is automatic. Medicare Part D enrollment isn’t, which means you need to enroll if you want Medicare prescription drug coverage.
If you are continuing to work beyond age 65 and wish to keep your group health coverage, you can potentially delay enrollment in Part B without penalty. Whether or not you can do so without penalty depends on the size of your employer. When you decide to come off of your group coverage, be sure to match up your enrollment in Medicare in order to avoid a gap in coverage.
How to Apply for Medicare
For those not already receiving Social Security benefits, the team at Burchfield Insurance can help you enroll.
- Applying for Medicare is done through the Social Security Administration during the seven month period surrounding your 65th birthday.
- You can apply at any time during the three months prior to your birthday, the month of your birthday, or the three months following your birthday. Failing to do so could result in permanent penalties. We strongly recommended applying during the three months prior.
- You can apply securely online, via telephone (1-800-772-1213), or by appointment at your local Social Security Administration Office.
- Once your application is received, it will be reviewed, and you will be contacted if any additional information is required.
- After any additional information is received, you will receive a decision letter.
- If approved you will receive a Welcome to Medicare Packet containing your Medicare card, the Medicare and You handbook, and other important information.
If you desire supplemental coverage such as a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medigap Plan, you are eligible to sign up during the same enrollment window. Once you received your Medicare card with your ID number and effective dates, you can then enroll in additional coverage. All the private insurance companies providing Medicare Advantage and Medigap are required to accept you during this period of time.
Keep in mind there are no premiums for Medicare Part A, provided you or your spouse paid Medicare taxes for a minimum of 10 years. If not, eligible individuals are required to pay monthly premiums. Part B does require payment of a monthly premium, adjusted based on income levels.
Planning and applying for Medicare is important as you near the age of 65. We are here to help you navigate all the details of applying for Medicare and enrolling in the options best for you. We stay up-to-date with the latest changes to ensure that you always have access to the most current information available. At Burchfield Insurance, we are an independent agency built on service to our clients, and we are here to help you with your Medicare decisions.
Applying for Medicare? Burchfield Insurance Can Help
Though those who are nearing 65 and already receiving Social Security benefits are automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A (hospital coverage) and Part B (medical coverage) as they become eligible. For seniors who aren’t already receiving Social Security benefits, you’ll need to sign up for Medicare coverage. At Burchfield Insurance, we can help with applying for Medicare Part A and Part B when you become eligible. We can also guide you in making the right decision in regard to Part D (prescription drug coverage) and whether Medicare Advantage or a Medicare Supplement is right for you. Contact us today to find out more about all the options available to you with Medicare and receive your FREE quote.