Here’s How You Can Enroll for Medicare

Most people become eligible for Medicare once they’re 65 years old. Depending on whether or not you are collecting retirement benefits when you enter your IEP (Initial Enrollment Period), your enrollment steps for Medicare will differ. 

-You should automatically be enrolled in both Medicare Part A and B if you are receiving Railroad Retirement benefits or Social Security retirement benefits.

– You will need to actively enroll for Medicare if you are not receiving Railroad Retirement benefits or Social Security retirement benefits.

Generally, you should not have to contact anyone if you are eligible for automatic enrollment. Three months before your coverage starts, you will receive a package in the mail with your new Medicare card. In this package, you will also find a letter that explains how Medicare works and states that you have been automatically enrolled in both Part A and Part B. 

Your card and package will come from the Railroad Retirement Board if you get Railroad Retirement benefits. Your package will come from the SSA (Social Security Administration) if you receive Social Security retirement benefits.

Unless you have insurance on your or your spouse’s current work (job-based insurance), you should typically not turn down Part B. If you turn down Part B and don’t have job-based insurance, you might incur a premium penalty if you decide to sign up for Medicare coverage any time in the future. 

Also, after you become eligible for Medicare, if your job-based insurance will pay secondary, then you should enroll in Medicare for primary coverage. This way, you will pay less for your healthcare.  

Signing up for Medicare

If you need to actively enroll in Medicare, follow the steps below:

If you choose to enroll during the Initial Enrollment Period, sign up for Parts A and/or B by:

– Visiting your Social Security office

– Calling Social Security

– Applying online

– Mailing a dated and signed letter to Social Security that mentions your name, Social Security number, and the date when you would like to be enrolled in Medicare