Can You Get Social Security And Not Sign Up For Medicare
Yes, many people receive Social Security without signing up for Medicare.
Most people arent eligible for Medicare until they turn 65. As you can start collecting Social Security retirement benefits at 62, individuals may have Social Security without Medicare for several years.
Most people enroll in Part B once they turn 65, but you may decide to delay enrolling in Part B if you or your spouse has health insurance through an employer. Be sure to learn more about how Medicare enrollment works in your specific case, though. If you delay enrollment in Medicare Part B when youre first eligible and you dont have other creditable coverage, you could face late enrollment penalties for the rest of the time that you have Part B once you sign up.
As most people dont pay a premium for Part A, theres no reason to cancel the coverage, even if you dont think you need it. You are free to decline other Medicare plans, such as Parts B and D, though again you should make sure you wont cause yourself to go without coverage or have to pay late enrollment penalties in the future.
Can I Get Medicare Coverage If I Don’t Sign Up For Social Security At 65
Who is this for?
If you’re not planning on signing up for Social Security right away, you can still enroll in Medicare. Learn how here.
These days, people are retiring later in life than their parents did. If youre still working, you might not want to start collecting Social Security benefits right when you turn 65.
But you can enroll in Medicare at 65 even if youre not getting Social Security. In some cases, signing up for Medicare as soon as youre eligible is better than waiting.
- Medicare might have better coverage than your health insurance plan through work.
- If you dont have a comparable health insurance plan and you wait to sign up for Medicare, your Medicare premiums will be higher when you do sign up.
Spouses And Social Security Retirement Benefits
Your spouse can also claim up to 50 percent of your benefit amount if they dont have enough work credits, or if youre the higher earner. This doesnt take away from your benefit amount. For example, say you have a retirement benefit amount of $1,500 and your spouse has never worked. You can receive your monthly $1,500 and your spouse can receive up to $750. This means your household will get $2,250 each month.
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Can I Get A Medicare Supplement Plan Too
Medicare Supplement Insurance, also known as Medigap, helps pay your out-of-pocket costs under Original Medicare. Rather than covering healthcare directly, these plans help pay your share of costs for services covered by Medicare Part A and Part B.
These plans are also offered by private insurance companies. As with the other private Medicare offerings, you can buy these plans if you are eligible for Medicare, even if you dont receive Social Security benefits of any kind.
It is relevant to note that if you want one of these plans, buying it during your Medigap Open Enrollment Period is your best option. It’s one of the rare times you have guaranteed issue rights. Your Medigap OEP begins the day you’re both age 65 or older AND enrolled in Original Medicare.
When you have guaranteed issue rights, you dont have to deal with medical underwriting. This means that the insurance company cannot deny you coverage or charge you more, even if you have pre-existing medical conditions. Unless you qualify for guaranteed issue rights, Medigap insurers do not have to sell a plan to you.
Medicare Supplement plans are only available to people with Original Medicare. If you have Medicare Advantage, you cannot purchase a Medigap plan.
How Do Social Security And Medicare Work Together
Social Security benefits provide partial replacement income if youre a qualified retiree or disabled person, as well as for spouses, children, and survivors. The amount that you receive is determined by the Social Security Administration.
Medicare is a United States federal health insurance program that reduces the cost of healthcare services. Medicare plans cover people age 65 or older, younger people who meet eligibility requirements, and individuals with certain diseases.
Although the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is the agency in charge of the Medicare program, Social Security processes your application for Original Medicare .
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Top 5 Things You Need To Know About Medicare Enrollment
1. People are eligible for Medicare for different reasons.
Some are eligible when they turn 65. People under 65 are eligible if they have received Social Security Disability Insurance or certain Railroad Retirement Board disability benefits for at least 24 months. If they have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis , theres no waiting period for Medicare. Some people with End Stage Renal Disease may be eligible for Medicare. Its important to know the different ways that people qualify for Medicare so you can help current and former employees and their dependents anticipate their eligibility for Medicare so they can make timely and appropriate decisions about their enrollment.
People living in the United States and U.S. Territories who are already collecting Social Securityeither disability or retirementare automatically enrolled into Part A and Part B when theyre first eligible. These people will get a packet of information a few months before they turn 65 or receive their 25th month of Social Security Disability or Railroad Retirement Board benefits. At that time, they can choose to keep or decline Part B, but cant decline Part A unless they withdraw their original application for Social Security and pay back all Social Security cash benefits.
Who Is Eligible For Medicare
Most people enroll in Medicare when they turn 65. You can enroll as early as three months before your 65th birthday or as late as three months after. Youll need to be a United States citizen or have been a permanent legal resident for at least five years. In order to get full coverage, you or your spouse need to meet a work requirement. Meeting the work requirement verifies that youve paid into the system.
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Special Circumstances: Medicare With Als Or End
Medicare eligibility rules for people with ALS or end-stage renal disease are different. Individuals who qualify for Medicare with ALS or ESRD do not have to wait for your 25th month of disability to be eligible for Medicare.
If you qualify with ALS: You will automatically get Medicare Part A and Part B the month your disability benefits begin. 7
If you qualify with ESRD:8
- For most people, Medicare coverage will start on the 1st day of the 4th month of dialysis treatment.
- If you have an employer group health plan, Medicare will begin on the fourth month of dialysis.
- Treatments if you have employer coverage.
- If you participate in an at-home dialysis training program, your coverage may begin the first month of a regular course of dialysis provided the following are true:
- You participated in training from a Medicare-approved training facility for the first three months of your regular dialysis
- Your doctor expects you to finish training and be able to do your dialysis treatments yourself
Note, according to Medicare in order to qualify with ESRD all of the below must apply:9
For further information related to ALS and Medicare, visit www.alsa.org.
For further information related to ESRD and Medicare, visit www.medicare.gov.
If Im Eligible For Social Security Disability Benefits When Does Medicare Kick In
You will typically be automatically enrolled in Original Medicare, Part A and B, after youve received Social Security disability benefits for two straight years. Your Medicare coverage will start 24 months from the month you qualified for disability benefits. In some cases, this could be earlier than the month when you received your first check. You must be either a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident of at least five continuous years to be eligible for Medicare.
Note that certain conditions may qualify you for Medicare under age 65, but have different enrollment details than those described above.
- If you have Lou Gehrigs disease , youre enrolled in Medicare automatically the first month you receive disability benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board. The life expectancy of someone with ALS averages two to five years from the time of diagnosis, according the ALS Association. If you have ALS, you may not have time to wait two years on Social Security disability.
- If you have end-stage renal disease , you might qualify for Medicare, but youre not automatically enrolled. End-stage renal disease means kidneys are functioning at 10 to 15 percent of their normal capacity according to the Cleveland Clinic. At that point, the choices are dialysis or a kidney transplant. If youre on dialysis or youve had a kidney transplant, contact Social Security .
- In person by visiting a local Social Security office.
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Most People Who Are Approved For Disability Benefits Through The Social Security Administration Get Medicare Or Medicaid Eventually
By Bethany K. Laurence, Attorney
Generally, if you are approved for Social Security disabilityinsurance benefits, you will receive Medicare, and if you are approvedfor Supplemental Security Income , you will receive Medicaid. However, thisisn’t true in all states. Medicaid is operated by the states,and the states are allowed to set eligibility criteria that are different thanSSI’s criteria. As a result, whether getting approved for SSI gets you Medicaiddepends on your state, as we’ll discuss below.
Can I Get Medicare Without Social Security
Did you know that you do not have to be receiving a Social Security payment to enroll in Medicare?
It is easy to get confused because they often do go together. However, it is not necessary. In this blog, we will take a look at how and when Social Security and Medicare go together as well as how and when they dont. Plus we will give you an idea of what that might mean to you.
How Do I Enroll In Medicare If I Am Not Receiving Social Security
If you are not receiving Social Security benefits at least 4 months before you turn 65, you need to voluntarily enroll in Medicare in order to be covered. You can enroll online, in person, or over the phone.
- To enroll in Medicare online, apply online at the Social Security website
- To apply in person, visit your local Social Security office
- Too apply by phone, call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 7 AM to 7 PM Monday through Friday
You Can Receive Medicare Without Taking Your Social Security Benefits
Medicare and Social Security aid older Americans and their spouses who paid into the programs through FICA taxes during their working years.
Medicare provides both free and cost-effective health insurance coverage for eligible older adults who are 65 years of age or older. Social Security retirement benefits act as a small pension, providing monthly income to those eligible as early as age 62.
Even if you are eligible to start receiving benefits, you do not have to start taking them. In some cases, it may be better to delay or to start taking benefits from one program but not the other.
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At What Age Do I Qualify For Social Security
You can begin collecting Social Security retirement benefits as early as age 62. Doing so, however, is often not advisable, since it means lowering your monthly benefits potentially for life.
To collect the full monthly benefit your earnings record entitles you to, you must wait until full retirement age to sign up for Social Security. Depending on your year of birth, that age will fall out somewhere between 66 and 67. For each month you file for Social Security ahead of full retirement age, youll face a reduction in your monthly benefits that will likely remain in effect indefinitely, unless you manage to go through the motions of withdrawing your application soon after filing it.
If Youre New To Medicare
Youll have to manually apply for Medicare if:
- You live in Puerto Rico. You may get automatically enrolled in Part A as described above, but youll need to sign up for Part B.
- You arent receiving retirement benefits yet.
- You have end-stage renal disease .
If you have end-stage renal disease , you can apply for Medicare at any time. Otherwise, youre first eligible to enroll during your seven-month Initial Enrollment Period, which typically starts three months before you turn 65, includes the month of your 65th birthday, and ends three months later. When your Medicare coverage begins and when you get your Medicare card depends on the month you sign up during this period.
If you dont enroll in Medicare during your Initial Enrollment Period, in most cases youll have to wait until the General Enrollment Period, which takes place from January to March 31 every year. You may have to pay a late-enrollment penalty for Medicare Part B .
Some people decide to delay Medicare Part B enrollment if they have other coverage, since Part B comes with a premium. If youre working and have health coverage through an employer, you can sign up for Part B with a Special Enrollment Period when you stop working or that coverage ends. You wont have to pay a late enrollment penalty if you sign up during a Special Enrollment Period.
If you worked for a railroad, youd apply for Medicare through the Railroad Retirement Board. Otherwise, youd sign up through Social Security.
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Social Security Disability Insurance
When people discuss Social Security benefits, they are usually referring to retirement benefits. However, Social Security also administers disability benefits to qualified individuals.
A full discussion of this insurance program is outside of the scope of this article, but you can find some more details from the Social Security Administration page on disability insurance.
People who have received Social Security Disability Insurance benefits for 24 months are eligible for Medicare Part A and Part B, even if they arent yet 65 and dont receive Social Security retirement benefits.
Individuals who qualify for SSDI coverage and have Lou Gehrig’s disease qualify to receive Medicare benefits sooner, starting on the first month of their SSDI coverage.
How Much Does Medicare Cost
Original Medicare is divided into Part A and Part B .
- Part A helps pay for inpatient hospital care, some skilled nursing care, home health care and hospice care.
- Part B helps pay for doctor services, outpatient hospital care, durable medical equipment, home health care not covered by Part A, and other services. Medicare was never intended to pay 100% of medical bills. Its purpose is to help pay a portion of medical expenses. Medicare beneficiaries also pay a portion of their medical expenses, which includes deductibles, copayments, and services not covered by Medicare. The amounts of deductibles and copayments change at the beginning of each year.
Part A – Monthly Premium
If you are eligible, Part A is free because you or your spouse paid Medicare taxes while you were working. You earn Social Security “credits” as you work and pay taxes. For each year that you work, you earn 4 credits.
You are 65 or older, and you receive or are eligible to receive full benefits fr om Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board
You are under 65, and you have received Social Security disability benefits for 24 months You are under 65, and you have received Railroad Retirement disability benefits and you meet Social Security disability requirements You or your spouse had Medicare-covered government employment You are under 65 and have End-Stage Renal Disease
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Enrollment Windows Are Limited
If youre thinking about delaying your enrollment in Medicare, keep in mind that there are enrollment windows that apply. After your initial enrollment window ends, you can only sign up for Medicare Part A and B during the general annual enrollment period from January 1March 31, with coverage effective July 1.
And you can sign up for Part D during the annual enrollment period from October 15December 7, with coverage effective January 1 of the coming year.
So if you delay your enrollment, you could be paying higher premiums when you eventually do enroll, and youll have to wait until an open enrollment period in order to have access to coverage. If youre only enrolled in Part A, for example, and you get diagnosed with a serious illness in April, youll have to wait until the following January to have Part D coverage, and until the following Julymore than a year in the futureto have Part B coverage.
Keep all of this in mind when youre deciding whether to enroll in the parts of Medicare that have premiums.
Getting Medicare Enrollment Assistance
If you have questions about or need help with Medicare eligibility or enrollment due to disability, you will want to talk with Social Security office. You can also go to your local State Health Insurance Assistance Program office for Medicare counseling.
If you get approved for disability benefits but arent yet eligible for Medicare yet , you can reach out your local state human services agency to see if Medicaid may be an option for you.11
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