Medicare Enrollment Periods

What Are The Medicare Enrollment Periods

If you’re new to Medicare, knowing when to sign up for the plan or knowing when to switch plans is essential to getting the right benefits. Here we have outlined a guideline to help you understand Medicare Enrollment periods.

Initial Enrollment Period

The Initial Enrollment Period of Medicare starts three months before an individual turns 65 and ends three months after turning 65. This is the best period to enroll in Original Medicare to avoid any late enrollment periods, which are permanent with parts of Medicare, except for Part A.

If an individual is not collecting any Social Security benefits before the Initial Enrollment Period begins, he/she needs to join Medicare online or call Social Security.

General Enrollment Period

If you couldn’t get into the Initial Enrollment Period, you have an option to sign up during the General Enrollment Period of Medicare that begins on January 1 and remains valid until March 31. The coverage in this enrollment period starts on July 1. During this period, you can sign up for both Part A and B if you did not enroll when you were eligible.

Special Enrollment Period 

This enrollment period is a chance to enter Medicare insurance plans after the Initial Enrollment Period. Special circumstances trigger the signup period, allowing people to enroll in Part A and B. You can join during a Special Enrollment Period if you meet one of the following requirements:

  • You were covered by another health insurance plan when you became eligible for Medicare.
  • You moved outside of your plan’s service area.
  • You lost your current coverage.
  • You have the option to get other, better coverage.

Bottom Line

In a nutshell, the best time one can sign up for a Medicare insurance plan is when he/she first becomes eligible for Medicare. However, if you don’t sign up during the Initial Enrollment Period, you can face late enrollment penalties. Call Kannonball Insurance to understand enrollment periods and make confident choices.