Do people have any suggestions as to what company offers the best additional coverage to Medicare in Rhode Island?
Why do you recommend the particular company that you suggest?
I am STILL in the dark about medicare and will turn 65 later this year! I don't trust the SS employees or website to give me the correct answer! I will be working another 3 years and covered by my employer's lousy insurance plan. Do I need to sign up for Medicare at all? Part A perhaps? If I don't sign up, is there a monthly penalty when I do go into Medicare? I'd rather get the answer from some of you than from user-unfriendly websites! Thanks!
I would like answers to your questions also. My husband is retired and could get medicare but is on my health insurance since he has multiple health problems. My mother also has many health problems and is on medicare and part B (??) and has little out-of-pocket medical expense. We wonder if medicare would be better for him . . . or not?!?
Anyone else in this position? I would like to hear from someone in the "know."
It's recommended signing up for Medicare as soon as you are eligible. If you miss the 7 mo. window (from 65th BD), you will have to pay a penalty for Part B, effective immediately and for all future years.
Once enrolled in Medicare, your insurance becomes the secondary insurer; e.g., Medicare pays first, then insurer pays, and anything remaining is your responsibility. Your insurer should be notified when you receive your Medicare card so they can properly adjust their billing process.
I suggest you carefully read the information on this website, especially the second section "When to Sign Up for Medicare". You can use this link: http://gotoretirement.com/2009/05/medicare-eligibility-when-sign-up/
If you have any questions after that, talk to your HR dept. and check the Social Security/Medicare website at: http://ssa.gov/
I went online to ssa.gov to apply for medicare and a message appeared saying you must be 61 and 8 months.
I will check again.
I recently turned 64 but will probably continue working for the next few years. However, I keep reading that, regardless of whether or not I continue working or apply for Social Security at 65, I should apply for Medicare 3-4 months before turning 65.
Should I do this even though I am covered on my employer's health insurance? What is the benefit to me of applying in this manner? Are there costs or other considerations in terms of my health insurance coverage? So far, the websites I've visited, including the government's Medicare website, haven't clearly addressed these questions.
Recently, I asked the community, as I approach 65, what I should do about registering for Medicare even though I am still employed and covered on my employer's health insurance. Here is a very helpful reply to this question directly from Medicare:
Thank you for visiting medicare.gov. This is in reply to your question regarding if you can wait to apply for Part B benefits, due to your coverage through your current employer.
If you a currently working, and you have group health coverage through your employer, you can wait to enroll into Medicare Part B, without incurring a penalty. A Special Enrollment Period is available if you wait to enroll in Medicare Part B because you or your spouse is working and you have group health coverage through a current employer or union. If this applies, you can sign up for Medicare Part B:
-While you are still covered by an employer or union group health plan, through your or your spouse's employment, or
-During the 8 months following the month when the employer or union group health plan coverage ends or when the employment ends (whichever comes first).
Most people who sign up for Part B during the Special Enrollment Period do not have to pay higher premiums. However, if you are eligible, but do not sign up during the Special Enrollment Period, you will only be able to sign up during the General Enrollment Period and the cost of Part B may go up.
Most people do not have to pay a premium for Part A, because they or their spouse has at least 40 credits of Medicare covered employment. Medicare covered employment is when Medicare taxes are withheld from your paychecks. One credit of Medicare-covered employment is equal to 3 months. 40 credits of Medicare-covered employment are equal to 10 years.
If you do not receive the Part A premium free, you can choose to purchase the coverage. For those who must pay for Part A:
-The monthly premium for people having 30-39 credits of Medicare-covered employment is $248 in 2011.
-The monthly premium for people who are not otherwise eligible for premium-free hospital insurance and have less than 30 credits of Medicare-covered employment is $450 in 2011.
Everyone must pay for Medicare Part B if they want the coverage. Part B is medical insurance that covers doctors’ services, durable medical equipment, and hospital outpatient care. For 2011, the standard Part B premium is $115.40 per month for beneficiaries who file an individual tax return with annual income of $85,000 or less ($170,000 or less for those who file jointly).
Even if you keep working after you turn 65, you may want to consider signing up for Medicare Part A. If you have health coverage through your employer or union, Part A may still help pay some of the costs not covered by your group health plan. However, you may want to wait to sign up for Medicare Part B if you or your spouse are working and have group health coverage through you or your spouse's employer or union. You would have to pay the monthly Medicare Part B premium, and the Medicare Part B benefits may be of limited value to you as long as the group health plan is the primary payer of your medical bills.
If you work for a small company (less than 20 employees), you should talk to your employee health benefits administrator before making any decision not to take Medicare Part B. If your employer has less than 20 employees, Medicare is the primary payer and your group health insurance would be the secondary payer.
You can apply for Medicare benefits 3 months prior to the month of your 65th birthday, the month of your 65th birthday, or 3 months after the month of your 65th birthday. To apply for Medicare benefits, please contact the Social Security Administration (SSA). The SSA handles Medicare Part A and Part B eligibility, enrollment, disenrollment, and premium issues. You can reach Social Security at 1-800-772-1213, from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm, Monday through Friday, or visit your local Social Security office, for additional assistance. For the office closest to you, try the field office locator at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/locator.
If you need further assistance, please feel free to e-mail us again. You can also visit us on the web at www.mymedicare.gov to review personalized information about your Medicare coverage. Other useful resources, such as Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), can be found at www.medicare.gov. Or you may call us at 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227) to speak with a representative. TTY users should call 1-877-486-2048 for assistance.
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