Turning 65 in October … what are my Medicare enrollment timing options?
I have collected your articles on Medicare for years from the local newspaper. I turn 65 on Oct. 20 and am preparing to retire in February. I have a question about my enrollment timing.
I plan to work through January 2024 to help with the transition of my job responsibilities. I am planning to enroll in Medicare Part A and B during my Medicare enrollment period and not delay Part B. I understand that I will be paying for Part B when I don’t need it because I am still working, with employer health coverage.
I want to make sure that I am enrolled in Medicare Part B before my turning-65 Medicare Enrollment Period ends and can begin a Medicare Supplement Plan G policy on Feb. 1 when I retire. Look forward to your opinion.
--Bill from Houston
I have great Medicare enrollment news for you because effective Jan. 1, 2023, Medicare changed the Effective Date Schedule for those turning 65. You will (coincidentally) benefit from this change. Before, if you signed up during the last three months of your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP), your Medicare Part B coverage started two to three months after you enrolled. Now you can sign up during the last three months of your IEP and have your Medicare Part B coverage begin the first day of the month after you sign up.
Bill, you will be able to have your “turning 65” Medicare Part B begin Feb. 1, 2024; you do not have to pay for your Medicare Part B to begin in October, the month that you turn 65. Also, because your Part B will begin on Feb. 1, you can enroll in a Medicare Supplement Plan G to start Feb. 1 since you are losing your employer’s group health insurance Jan. 31.
Medicare’s IEP is the 7-month period which occurs 3 months before turning 65, the month you turn 65 and 3 months after turning 65. (Chapter 1 of Toni’s Medicare Survival Guide Advanced edition explains enrolling in Medicare in detail.)
Americans must set up a www.ssa.gov account prior to enrolling in Medicare, prior to turning 65, and visit www.ssa.gov/medicare/sign-up to enroll in Medicare when turning 65.
Copyright 2023 Toni King, Distributed by Counterpoint Media