It’s Time for Medicare

You’re turning 65. Or you’re already 65 and getting ready to retire and lose your healthcare coverage. You’re almost ready for your first Medicare plan. We can help you make sense of it all.

When can I enroll?

With Medicare, timing is key. If you miss a deadline, you miss out on coverage and could pay a penalty later.

If you already get a Social Security or Railroad check for retirement, CMS will automatically enroll you in Original Medicare. You don’t need to apply.

If you don’t already get a Social Security or Railroad check, you can enroll during these times.

  • For Parts A, B, C (Medicare Advantage) and D (prescription drugs), you have a seven-month Initial Enrollment Period.
  • For Medicare Supplement (Medigap), you have a six-month period starting the first day of the month you’re 65 or older and have Part B.
  • The General Enrollment Period for Original Medicare and Medicare Supplement is January 1 to March 31.
  • The Annual Enrollment Period for Medicare Advantage is October 15 to December 7. (If you already have Medicare, you can make changes at this time.)
  • You can also enroll after a special event, like retirement or moving. Call us to see if you qualify for a Special Election Period.

What if I’m still covered at work?

You can keep the health plan you have and enroll in Medicare when you retire.

  • If you keep medical coverage through your job and wait to get Part B, you’ll have eight months from when you retire to add Part B without a penalty.
  • If you keep getting drug coverage through your job, you won’t pay a penalty if you add Part D later.

It’s important to talk to your employer before choosing to stay on your group plan or enroll in Medicare.

If you’re not sure how the parts of Medicare work, head over to our Understand Medicare section to learn more.