Documents You Need To Apply For Medicare
To begin the application process, youll need to ensure you have the following documentation to prove identity:
- A copy of your birth certificate
- Your drivers license or state I.D. card
- Proof of U.S. citizenship or proof of legal residency
You may need additional documents as well. Make sure to have on hand:
- Your Social Security card
- W-2 forms if still active in employment
- Military discharge documents if you previously served in the U.S. military before 1968
- Information about current health insurance types and coverage dates
If you are already enrolled in Part A and have chosen to delay enrollment in Part B, you will need to complete additional forms .
Medicaid Or Medicare Savings Programs
Medicare beneficiaries with limited income or very high medical costs may be eligible to receive assistance from the Medicaid program. There are also Medicare Savings Programs for other limited-income beneficiaries that may help pay for Medicare premiums, deductibles, and coinsurance. There are specified income and resources limits for both programs. Contact your local county Department of Social Services or SHIIP to apply for one of these programs.
How To Apply Online For Just Medicare
If you are within three months of turning age 65 or older and not ready to start your monthly Social Security benefits yet, you can use our online retirement application to sign up just for Medicare and wait to apply for your retirement or spouses benefits later. It takes less than 10 minutes, and there are no forms to sign and usually no documentation is required.
To find out what documents and information you need to apply, go to the .
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Do I Need Medicare Part B
We always advise our clients to contact their employer or union benefits administrator before delaying Part A and Part B to learn more about how their insurance works with Medicare. Employer coverage may require that you enroll in both Part A and Part B to receive full coverage.
Common reasons beneficiaries delay Part B include:
Enrolling When Youre Indigenous
If you dont have standard identity documents, you can use a referee instead. You and your referee need to fill in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Medicare enrolment and amendment form. The form says who can be a referee.
You can take your form to your local agent, access point or service centre.
Call the Indigenous access line if you need help with the form.
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Exempt From The Three Month Waiting Period
Canadian Armed Forces Dependents
The spouse or dependent of a regular member of the Canadian Armed Forces who has entered the province from another Canadian province or territory are entitled to first-day coverage providing they have established residence in the province of New Brunswick.
Foreign Nationals/Out of Country Residents moving back to New Brunswick
As of June 17, 2010, Foreign Nationals or Canadians moving back to New Brunswick from another country are entitled to Medicare coverage from their first day of arrival in the province providing they are deemed by the Director to have established a permanent residence within New Brunswick. Decisions will be made on a case by case basis.
NOTE: If you have moved to New Brunswick from another Canadian province or territory, it is recommended that you contact your former place of residence to ensure continuous coverage during the three month waiting period.
When To Enroll In Medicare If I Am Receiving Disability Benefits
If you are under 65 and receiving certain disability benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board, you will be automatically enrolled in Original Medicare, Part A and Part B, after 24 months of disability benefits. The exception to this is if you have end-stage renal disease . If you have ESRD and had a kidney transplant or need regular kidney dialysis, you can apply for Medicare. If you have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis , you will automatically be enrolled in Original Medicare in the same month that your disability benefits start
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What If I Cant Get Copies
You should submit your application even if you dont have copies of some of these documents. Social Security might be able to help you track them down.
In fact, Social Security can often request copies and verification from your states Bureau of Vital Statistics. If not, it can help you get the forms you need in order to get the documents yourself.
The way you enroll in Medicare depends on which parts of Medicare you choose. There are different methods for enrolling in original Medicare as opposed to Medicare Advantage , Medigap, and Part D plans.
Your Medicare Card When To Expect It
If you are already receiving retirement benefits: If you are already receiving Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board benefits, you should automatically receive your Medicare card in the mail about three months before you turn 65. If you qualify for Social Security benefits, you will automatically qualify for Medicare Part A as well. You will need to enroll in Medicare Part B at the time that you apply for retirement benefits in order for Medicare coverage to begin when you turn 65.
To qualify for Medicare, you need to be an American citizen or legal permanent resident of at least five continuous years who is at least 65 years old, or who qualifies by disability .
If you are receiving disability benefits: If you are currently receiving certain Social Security or RRB disability benefits, you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare after 24 months of receiving disability. You should receive your Medicare card in the mail in the 25th month after you receive your first Social Security check.
For individuals with ALS , you will automatically be enrolled in Medicare the same month that your disability benefits begin.
For individuals with end-stage renal disease , you may manually enroll for Medicare Part A and/or Part B through Social Security any time before or after turning 65.
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What Documents Do I Need To Enroll In Medicare
Youll need to prove that youre eligible for Medicare when you first enroll. In some cases, Medicare might already have this information.
If youre already receiving Social Security retirement benefits or Social Security Disability Insurance, you wont need to submit any additional documentation. Social Security and Medicare will already have all the information they need to process your enrollment.
If you dont receive any kind of Social Security benefits, youll need to provide documentation to enroll in Medicare.
You can enroll online, over the phone, or in person at a Social Security office. No matter how you apply, youll need to provide certain information.
Generally, this includes:
Most of this information can be provided simply by filling out the application. Some details, though, will need extra documentation. These documents may include:
You might not need all these documents, but its a good idea to have as many of them ready as you can. Social Security will let you know whats needed.
Any documents you send should be originals. Social Security will accept copies of W-2s, tax documents, and medical records, but everything else needs to be an original document.
Social Security will send the documents back to you after theyre reviewed.
What Services Does The Partnership Provide
- Medicare and Medicaid information and education
- Help with original Medicare eligibility, enrollment, benefits, complaints, rights and appeals
- Explain Medicare Supplemental insurance policy benefits and comparisons
- Explain Medicare Advantage and provide comparisons and help with enrollment and disenrollment
- Explain Medicare Prescription Drug coverage, help compare plans and search for other prescription help
- Information about long-term care insurance
The partnership also helps with the following programs. Benefit Counselors are specially trained to help you understand all the fine print to find and apply to a plan that works for you. They advocate for you with these programs and help you get the services you need.
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You Automatically Get Medicare
- You should already have Part A and Part B , because you have ALS and youre already getting disability benefits.
- We mailed you a welcome package with your Medicare card.
Sign up for Part B if you live in Puerto Rico or outside the U.S.
- Well mail you a welcome package with your Medicare card 3 months before your Medicare coverage starts.
Sign up for Part B if you live in Puerto Rico or outside the U.S.You get Part A automatically. If you want Part B, you need to sign up for it. If you dont sign up for Part B within 3 months after your Part A starts, you might have to wait to sign up and pay a monthly late enrollment penalty.
- Well mail you a welcome package with your Medicare card 3 months before your Medicare coverage starts.
Sign up for Part B if you live in Puerto Rico or outside the U.S.You get Part A automatically. If you want Part B, you need to sign up for it. If you dont sign up for Part B within 3 months of turning 65, you might have to wait to sign up and pay a monthly late enrollment penalty.
Should I Take Medicare Part B
You should take Medicare Part A when you are eligible. However, some people may not want to apply for Medicare Part B when they become eligible.
You can delay enrollment in Medicare Part B without penalty if you fit one of the following categories.
Employer group health plans may cover items normally not covered by Medicare Part B. If so, and you meet one of the categories above or below, then you may not need to enroll in Medicare Part B and pay the monthly premium.
If you are:
- a spouse of an active worker
- a disabled, active worker
- a disabled spouse of an active worker
and choose coverage under the employer group health plan, you can refuse Medicare Part B during the automatic or initial enrollment period. You wait to sign up for Medicare Part B during the special enrollment period, an eight month period that begins the month the group health coverage ends or the month employment ends, whichever comes first.
You will not be enrolling late, so you will not have any penalty.
If you choose coverage under the employer group health plan and are still working, Medicare will be the “secondary payer,” which means the employer plan pays first.
If the employer group health plan does not pay all the patient’s expenses, Medicare may pay the entire balance, a portion, or nothing. An employer group health plan must be primary or nothing.
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Contact Social Security To Sign Up For Medicare
You can either:
Know when to sign up for Part BYou can only sign up for Part B at certain times. If you dont sign up for Part B when you turn 65, you might have to wait to sign up and pay a monthly late enrollment penalty. Find out when you can sign up. How much is the Part B late enrollment penalty?
So If You Find Affected By This New Policy What Are Your Options
- Unfreeze your credit report
If you contact Equifax directly, you can unfreeze your credit report, which will allow you to sign up for my Social Security. You can do this through the Equifax website by registering for a myEquifax account and updating your personal settings. As a second option, you can contact the company automated telephone service at 1-800-349-9960 and request them to unfreeze your report. You have to give your 10-digit PIN when the freeze was originally put in place. As a third option, you can also fill out the Equifax Freeze Request Form and send it to Equifax Security Freeze, P.O. Box 105788, Atlanta, GA 30348.
- Create my Social Security account in person at your local Social Security office
If you head to an SSA location, you can create a My Social Security account in person without being required to remove the credit freeze. Just make sure you bring documents that confirm your identity, age, and your place of birth. You also have to answer security questions. If you choose this option, the SSA recommends to call ahead of time and make an appointment to avoid a long wait period.
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How Do I Apply For Medicare Online
Applying for your Medicare benefits online is a simple 10-minute process for most people, and you wont need to send in any documents or other information to apply. In order to use the online application process, you must:
- Be at least 64 years and 9 months old.
- Want to enroll in Medicare and not currently receiving any Medicare benefits, including premium-free Part A.
- Not be receiving any Social Security retirement, survivor, or disability benefits.
You can complete the online application through the Social Security Administration website. If you have any questions or problems completing the online Medicare application, you can contact the Social Security office at 1-800-772-1213 TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778.You can speak to a representative Mon-Fri 7am-7pm.
Please note that if you worked for a railroad, you must apply for Medicare through the Railroad Retirement Board. You can contact them at 772-5772 751-4701).You may reach a representative Mon-Fri 9am-3:30pm
When To Apply For Medicare Part A And Part B
The Initial Enrollment Period is usually the first time you can apply for Medicare. There are a few special circumstances that might allow you to enroll earlier . But in general, people apply for Medicare within their seven-month IEP.
Heres what the Initial Enrollment Period looks like:
- Three full months before your 65th birthday month
- The entire month in which you turn 65
- Three full months after your birthday month
If you miss your sign-up window for Medicare Part A and Part B during your Initial Enrollment Period, there is also a General Enrollment Period every year from January 1 to March 31. And if you defer your Part B coverage , there is a Special Enrollment Period.
As a word of caution, if youre signing up for Medicare outside of your IEP, there are some pitfalls that are easily stepped into. You can read more about enrollment periods here.
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During A Special Enrollment Period
This SEP is available only if you have health insurance from an employer for which you or your spouse actively works. It allows you to delay enrolling in Part B until the employment or the coverage ends whichever occurs first.
The SEP actually lasts throughout the time you have coverage from current employment and for up to eight months after it ends. If you enroll at any point during this time frame, your Medicare coverage will begin on the first day of the following month, and you will not be liable for late penalties regardless of how old you are when you finally sign up.
Be aware that an IEP always trumps an SEP if the two should happen to overlap. For example, if your IEP ends on Aug. 31, and you retire on the same date, you will not be entitled to an SEP. Therefore, if you delayed enrollment until after Aug. 31, you would not be able to sign up until the following general enrollment period and your coverage would not begin until July 1 so you would be left for almost a year without coverage. Even if you signed up during the final months of your IEP, your coverage would still be delayed by two or three months. But, to continue this example, if you retired on Sept. 1, under the rules of the SEP, you could enroll in August and receive Medicare starting Sept. 1 with no loss of coverage.
Two other Medicare enrollment scenarios have different rules.
Enrolling In Original Medicare For The First Time
Enrollment in Original Medicare may or may not be automatic depending on your situation.
Youre automatically enrolled if you already receive Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board benefits, or become eligible early due to disability. Otherwise, youll need to enroll yourself during your Initial Enrollment Period .
You can enroll in Part A, Part B, or both. You dont have to enroll in Part B right away, because youll be charged a premium. Just remember that if you choose to wait to enroll in Part B, youll be charged a late enrollment penalty, and Part B coverage will cost you more.
You can enroll in Original Medicare online at the Social Security website or by calling or visiting your local Social Security office.
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Naturalization Certificate Or Certificate Of Citizenship
You can request a copy of your Naturalization Certificate or Certificate of Citizenship from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. You can fill out Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship, either online or by mail, to have a copy of these documents sent to you.
To submit this form, youll need to pay a $555 fee and send in two identical passport-style photos of yourself. Youll also have to send in a sworn statement if your document was lost or a police report if it was stolen.