When you become eligible for Medicare, you have several decisions to make, including whether you should enroll right when eligible or delay enrollment. In certain cases, you may be able to enroll without a future penalty.
Certain group coverage may allow you to delay Medicare enrollment, and you will have a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) when you leave that plan to enroll in Medicare. However, if you delay enrollment because you have certain other coverages, such as a Marketplace plan or COBRA, you will not receive an SEP to enroll in Medicare. You would need to enroll during the General Enrollment Period (GEP) and may be subject to a late enrollment penalty.
Do you have your spouse and children on your health insurance? You may consider waiting to enroll in Medicare until your spouse is also eligible. If your children are 18 or older, they may be eligible to enroll in a plan through their employer, or through Medicaid or the Health Insurance Marketplace®. However, you may decide that it is best to keep them in your group’s plan.
If (a) your employer has less than 20 employees, (b) your employer is not a part of a multiple-employer welfare arrangement, and (c) the insurance carrier does not elect to pay primary, you may be required to enroll in Medicare even if you stay on the group plan. This is because the group plan will become secondary to Medicare in these circumstances.
Even if you can stay on your employer-sponsored health coverage without Medicare, you may consider enrolling in Medicare, nonetheless. It’s important to consider your plan’s deductible and coverage, network of doctors, and premium compared to Medicare. You may also see if your employer would reimburse premiums associated with Medicare should you drop the group plan.
If you would like to speak to a licensed insurance agent to discuss your Medicare Options, call 330-683-1050.
By: Steven Thomas Smith
Medicare Moment, brought to you by the Hummel Group, shares important information about Medicare in 300 words or less! If you would like to speak to a licensed insurance agent to discuss your Medicare options, call 330-683-1050
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