Q: I’m turning 65 this year and I am planning to retire. When will I be eligible to enroll into Medicare?

A: Assuming you have met the work-related eligibility requirements (40 yearly quarters ), you may begin enrollment into Medicare 90 days in advance of the month you turn 65.

Q: Can my dependent spouse be on my Medicare plan?

A: No. Medicare does not have spousal or dependent coverage. Medicare is an individual Insurance plan. Your spouse will need to have their Health Insurance Plan. If your spouse has reached the age of eligibility (65), then they can enroll in Medicare of their own accord 90 days in advance of the month they turn 65.

Q: Can I keep my employer coverage?

A: Maybe. If the employer group has 20 eligible employees or more, and you’re going to continue to work, then yes, it’s an option. But there are many things to consider. One the Important factors to consider will be if the employer-provided plan has drug coverage equal to Medicare Drug Coverage requirements.

Q: Do I need to enroll in Part “A” and Part “B” of Medicare?

A: Part “A” is typically in place, and a paid-up benefit when you turn 65 and have met the employment requirements. Part “B” is not, unless you have to enrolled in Social Security prior to age 65. If you have not filed to receive Social Security benefits, then you need to proactively enroll in Part “B” benefits and begin paying for them. Note you do not have to receive your Social Security Benefits to receive part “B” you can pay for them out of pocket.

Q: Can I just have “Original Medicare” A+B as my health insurance at retirement?

A: Yes. However, you will not have prescription drug coverage, and you will face unlimited exposure to those costs due to the gaps in Original Medicare.

Q: Can I keep all my same doctors when I’m on Medicare?

A: Yes, You usually can. It’s important to be sure your doctor accepts Medicare. Or accepts the Medicare Advantage plan you are considering enrolling into. Some don’t.

Q: Does Medicare cover me if I’m in a nursing home?

A: Yes, up to 100 days, after a required three-day hospital stay.

Q: Does Medicare provide dental coverage?

A: No. But some Medicare Advantage plans offer limited or comprehensive dental coverage. Depending on the Medicare Advantage plan you chose to enroll in.

Q: I am entitled to retiree benefits. Does that mean I won’t need Medicare?

A: No, a retiree plan will typically wrap around Medicare primary benefits. It always a good idea to contact your retirement administrator for your specific situation. Enrolling in a Medicare Advantage May affect you retiree medical plan.

Q: What is Part “D”?

A: Part “D” is the Prescription Drug plan Medicare introduced in 2006. It is important that you enroll in a Part “D” plan if you choose to have Original Medicare or a Medicare Supplement Plan. Not having a part “D” plan could expose you to non-enrollment penalties.

Q: What happens if I miss my designated enrollment window into Medicare?

A: In addition to having a major gap in health coverage, you will likely face a penalty from Medicare. A Part “B” penalty can be up to 0% of your Part “B” premium for each 12-month period outside of Medicare, and up to 1% of the national average of a Part “D” plan for each month absent Part “D”.

Q: What is a Part “C” plan?

A: Part “C” is another name for Medicare Advantage. Also named MA, MSA, or MA-PD (when prescriptions are included). A Medicare Advantage plan is a private Insurance plan that will provide all of your medical care. It has the same guarantees and protections as original Medicare.

Q: Where do I go to get signed up for Medicare?

A: Online at SSA.gov. You will need to create an account or in person at a local Social Security office.

Q: What is creditable coverage?

A: This is a Medicare term that establishes that the previous coverage is at least as good as Medicare’s. Typically, it is in play for Part “D” to avoid penalty.

Q: Should I have both a Medicare Advantage Plan and a Medicare Supplement Plan?

A: No. You can only be enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan or a Medicare Supplement at a time.

How Much Life Insurance Do I Need?

Life can come at you fast, making the right life insurance plan can be daunting. Ensure your family is safe and taken care by understanding your options and picking the best plan for your family. The folks at Lucero Benefits Services can help you make the right decision to meet your needs and make your dreams realty.

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