Determine Your Medicare Eligibility
If youre just getting started with Medicare, checking out Medicare.govs eligibility calculator is a good first step. There, you can figure out whether you qualify for Medicare and when you can sign up. If your initial enrollment period the period that starts before your 65th birthday has already elapsed, you can also get information about the next general enrollment period.
The sites premium calculator is another tool worth checking out. You can use this to calculate the premiums youd pay on Part B, since those can vary based on income and penalties applied for late enrollment. The results will also tell you if youre eligible for premium-free Part A as it the case for most people or if you need to purchase it.
The Different Types Of Medicare Plans
If you are age 65 or over, or have a disability, you may be eligible for Medicare. Medicare is a government-run health insurance program that provides health care coverage for people age 65 and over, and people with disabilities. There are three types of Medicare plans: Part A, Part B, and Part D.
Part A covers inpatient hospital services and some medical procedures.
Part B covers doctor visits, outpatient hospital services, prescription drugs, and some medical procedures.
Part D covers the cost of prescription drugs. If you have both Parts A and B, Part D will cover the entire cost of your prescriptions.
There are several different Medicare plans available. The plan that is right for you depends on your income, your health history, and whether you have any other coverage. You can find out more about each plan by visiting the Medicare website or by calling 1-800-MEDICARE .
Your Medicare Checklist To Get Started
Our goal at JBird Insurance Group is to help you be confident as you retire and make sure your medical and financial needs are covered. Please check out our downloadable New to Medicare Checklist PDF that has all these steps outlined for you! Theres even a worksheet to help you easily compare costs so you can make an informed decision.
If during this process you have questions or need help, you can contact us at any time! Our service is 100% free and theres no obligation to talk with us.
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Medicare Advantage Plans: What You Need To Know
Medicare Advantage plans, also known as Part C, offer supplemental insurance to Medicare beneficiaries. These plans can provide a variety of benefits and services, such as mental health and substance abuse treatment, doctor visits, prescription drugs, and home health care.
To get the most out of your Medicare Advantage plan, its important to understand the costs involved. Here are five things you need to know about Medicare Advantage costs:
1. The premiums for Medicare Advantage plans vary significantly based on the coverage options chosen. The most popular plans typically have lower premiums than traditional Medicare but offer more benefits.
2. The costs of services provided by Medicare Advantage plans are usually not covered by Medicare. Most plans include a selection of provider networks, which means that you will have to pay for services out-of-pocket if you choose not to use the plans provider network.
3. You may be able to save money by choosing a plan with low premiums but high deductibles or copays. Plan features that can save money include a no-deductible option and premium discounts for members who use certain types of medical services .
4. If you
Can I Change Medicare Advantage Plans During My Initial Enrollment Period
The first time you may be eligible to sign up for a Medicare Advantage plan may be during your Initial Enrollment Period. During this period, you can both enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan and switch from one plan to another. Maybe you first sign up for a plan that seems attractive but then decide you want the same coverage your spouse has. You can change Medicare Advantage plans anytime during your Initial Enrollment Period.
If you qualify for Medicare by age, your Initial Enrollment Period starts 3 months before the month you turn 65, includes the month you turn 65, and ends 3 months after the month you turn 65. If you qualify for Medicare through disability, this period starts 3 months before your 25th month of getting Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board benefits, includes the 25th month of getting disability and ends 3 months after your 25th month of getting disability benefits.
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How To Enroll In The Various Medicare Plans
There are three types of Medicare plans that all have different ways of signing up. Each of these plans also has different enrollment periods. Delaying your Medicare Enrollment could result in various penalties and fees. Its helpful to set reminders for these important dates, especially when signing up for Medicare for the first time.
|Original Medicare||Automatic or three months before the month you turn 65 and extends three months after.||10 percent of the monthly premium|
|Medicare Advantage Plans||None|
|Six months after the month youre 65 and enrolled in Medicare Part B.||None|
|It depends on how long you went without Part D|
When Is The Medicare Part D Annual Election Period
If you did not enroll in prescription drug coverage during IEP, you can sign up for prescription drug coverage during the Annual Election Period that runs every year from October 15 to December 7.
During AEP, you can:
- Sign up for a Medicare prescription drug plan.
- Drop a Medicare prescription drug plan.
- Join a Medicare Advantage plan that includes prescription drug coverage.
- Switch from a Medicare Advantage plan that doesnât include prescription drug coverage to a Medicare Advantage plan that does .
Outside of the Part D Initial Enrollment Period and the Annual Election Period, usually the only time you can make changes to prescription drug coverage without a qualifying Special Election Period is during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period but only if you are dropping Medicare Advantage coverage and switching back to Original Medicare. The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period runs from January 1 to March 31.
Medicare Part A and Part B do not include prescription drug coverage, and if you switch back to Original Medicare during the Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, you will have until March 31 to join a stand-alone Medicare prescription drug plan.
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Use Efficient Medicare Sales Tools
Having easy-to-use and reliable sales tools at your disposal is a must. For quoting, enrollment, and client management, you want technology you can trust and use consistently to take Medicare sales from start to finish. FMO partnerships come into play again for this need since many offer their own tools and tech for their agents to use. Of course, Ritter is no exception! Between Medicareful and our Ritter Platform, weâve got it all covered. These resources are exclusive to our partnered agents and you can gain access to them by completing a free registration with Ritter.
When Does Medicare Open Enrollment Start
For most people, its best to enroll during your seven-month Initial Enrollment Period. Begin three months before you turn 65. It includes your birth month, and it ends three months after your birth month.
If you want your benefits to start at the beginning of the month, you turn 65, be sure to sign up at least a month before your birthday. You can also enroll in Part D prescription coverage or a Medicare Advantage plan at this time.
Those that dont sign up for Part B during the Initial Enrollment Period may pay a late enrollment penalty. Youll pay the penalty every month for the rest of your life for as long as you have coverage.
Examples of Creditable Coverage
For example, you work for a large employer, and the health plan is creditable coverage. In this scenario, delaying enrollment would make sense, especially if the coverage is better than Medicare.
Although, group coverage better than Medicare isnt the typical scenario. Many people work for small employers when this is your situation, Medicare is primary. So, if you dont have Medicare, and you only have the group plan, the employer plan wont pay until your Medicare is active.
Further, COBRA is NOT creditable coverage for Medicare. When you delay Part B without creditable coverage, a late enrollment penalty could be coming your way.
Even those with TRICARE need to enroll in Medicare to keep their benefits. However, if you have TRICARE, its unlikely youll benefit from extra Medicare coverage.
Turning 65 What You Need To Know About Signing Up For Medicare
The first of the 78 million baby boomers turned 65 on January 1, 2011, and some 10,000 boomers a day will reportedly reach that milestone between now and 2030. If you are about to turn 65, then it is time to think about Medicare. You become eligible for Medicare at age 65, and delaying your enrollment can result in penalties, so it is important to act right away.
There are a number of different options to consider when signing up for Medicare. Medicare consists of four major programs: Part A covers hospital stays, Part B covers physician fees, Part C permits Medicare beneficiaries to receive their medical care from among a number of delivery options, and Part D covers prescription medications. In addition, Medigap policies offer additional coverage to individuals enrolled in Parts A and B.
Local Elder Law Attorneys in Your City
Medicare enrollment begins three months before your 65th birthday and continues for 7 months. If you are currently receiving Social Security benefits, you don’t need to do anything. You will be automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B effective the month you turn 65. If you do not receive Social Security benefits, then you will need to sign up for Medicare by calling the Social Security Administration at 800-772-1213 or online at . It is best to do it as early as possible so your coverage begins as soon as you turn 65.
Learn About The Different Ways To Get Medicare Benefits
There are two ways to get Medicare Part A and Part B benefits, and a total of seven different ways to combine all the different parts of Medicare to create comprehensive coverage.
To get Medicare Parts A & B, you can either choose to get your benefits through Original Medicare or a Medicare Advantage plan.
Original Medicare is administered by the federal government. Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private insurance companies and provide all the same benefits as Original Medicare as well as additional benefits, such as coverage for prescription drugs and for dental, vision and hearing care all in one plan.
Once you decide how you want to get Parts A & B, check out the different ways to combine the different Medicare parts.
Ner With Other Businesses
You can also connect with other businesses in your area and develop a referral stream.
For example, you might connect with a financial advisor she would refer her Medicare clients to you for their health and life insurance, and you would direct your clients to her for retirement planning.
You could also partner up with a local bank they have a vested interest in people not moving their Health Savings Accounts . Theyd be happy to refer their Medicare-eligible customers to an agent specializing in Medicare Advantage plans.
Clients can use their HSA money to pay for out-of-pocket costs associated with MAPDs. You can also use your HSA money to pay for Medicare Advantage premiums .
Sign Up: Within 8 Months After You Or Your Spouse Stopped Working
Avoid the penalty & gap in coverageIf you miss this 8-month Special Enrollment Period, youll have to wait to sign up and go months without coverage. You might also pay a monthly penalty for as long as you have Part B. The penalty goes up the longer you wait to sign up. How much is the Part B late enrollment penalty?
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When Is My Medicare Initial Enrollment Period
For most people, enrolling in Medicare Part A is automatic. However, there are several instances where you may have to manually enroll in Medicare Part A and/or Part B during your Initial Enrollment Period , the seven-month period that begins three months before you turn 65, includes the month of your 65th birthday, and ends three months later.
Some situations where you would enroll in Medicare during your initial enrollment include:
Determine Whether You Need To Sign Up For Medicare
You are automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B if:
If you already collect Social Security retirement benefits, you are automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A and Part B. No further action is required.
Your coverage will begin the first day of the month you turn 65.
Even if you are automatically enrolled, you may also decide to:
- Sign up for a Medicare Part D drug plan.
- Buy a Medigap supplement insurance policy.
- Switch to a Medicare Advantage plan.
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Establish A Website To Create Medicare Leads
Websites can serve multiple functions and enable you to reach a wider range of consumers. With 73 percent of U.S. adults aged 65 and older using the internet in 2019, chances are theyâre using the internet to find answers about Medicare. By having an online presence, they could be searching for agents, find you, and become a lead! And if you donât have a website, they could very well find another agentâs site and youâll miss out. And the best part is, this can happen at any time because your website is available 24/7. So, your website can do the work for you while youâre getting other things accomplished.
Do I Have To Pay For Medicare Online
If you are receiving Social Security or Railroad Retirement benefits, your Medicare premium will be deducted from your monthly benefit. If you arent receiving benefits, youll get a bill to pay your Part B, Part D and Part A, if you buy it, premiums. If you only buy Part B, youll get a bill every 3 months. Bills for Parts A and D will come every month.
You do not have to pay your Medicare bill online. There are four ways you can pay your bill:
- Through the mail by filling out the payment coupon attached to your bill
- Online through your Medicare account
- Directly from your checking or savings account using online billpay
- Medicare Easy Pay, a free service that automatically deducts your premium from your bank account each month
If you choose to pay via mail, youll need to mail your payment and coupon to:
Medicare Premium Collection Center
St. Louis, MO 63179-0355
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When Can You Join A Medicare Advantage Plan
Once you find a Medicare Advantage plan you wish to enroll in, you may be able to apply online or over the phone.
When you apply for coverage, you must provide your Medicare number and the dates that your Medicare Part A and Part B coverage began. These dates are listed on your Medicare card.
Find your personal situation below to determine when you can enroll in, leave or make changes to a Medicare Advantage plan.
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What Can I Do Next
Generally, youre first eligible to sign up for Part A and Part B starting 3 months before you turn 65 and ending 3 months after the month you turn 65.
Because the company has less than 20 employees, your job-based coverage might not pay for health services if you dont have both Part A and Part B.
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Secure Medicare Leads And Clients
Once you are âready-to-sellâ some Medicare plans, you need people to sell them to. Finding new leads can be tough but things like following-up and creating a website can do the trick. Also, FMOs can make it a bit easier as they can offer lead and marketing programs, prospecting lists, and other lead opportunities!
Medicare Training: How To Get Started
Odds are, youre going to be up against other independent insurance agents who will be selling products to the same people as you. To combat these competitors, youll want to play it safe. Make sure you have all the tools necessary to be the leading Medicare salesperson.
Many websites allow you the opportunity to get the training you need to be knowledgeable and certified as an agent.
Make sure to check in with your states department of insurance to find out the requirements. To receive a license to sell health insurance, the procedures vary by state. Its also recommended that you get a life license at the same time. You can take a Life and Health combo course.
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