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I Turn 65 This Year. How Do I Sign Up For Medicare?

Updated: Jul 29, 2021

By: Brian Barto, Independent Insurance Broker: VA and WV






Our staff specializes in Medicare Insurance plans. We help clients in Winchester, VA and Martinsburg, WV find the best health coverage for their situation.


Most people become eligible for Medicare when they turn 65. Your Medicare enrollment steps will differ depending on whether or not you are collecting retirement benefits when you enter your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP).

  • If you are receiving Social Security retirement benefits or Railroad Retirement benefits, you should be automatically enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B.

  • If you are not receiving Social Security retirement benefits or Railroad Retirement benefits, you will need to actively enroll in Medicare.

If you are eligible for automatic enrollment, you should receive a package in the mail three months before your coverage starts with your new Medicare card. There will also be a letter explaining how Medicare works and that you were automatically enrolled in both Parts A and B.

If you are 65, but are not receiving Social Security retirement benefits or Railroad Retirement benefits, you will need to actively enroll in Medicare. There are three different time periods during which you can enroll in Medicare Parts A and B.


1-Initial Enrollment Period (IEP). You can enroll in Medicare at any time during this seven-month period, which includes the three months before, the month of, and the three months following your 65th birthday.


2-Special Enrollment Period (SEP). The Part B SEP lets you delay enrollment in Part B without penalty if you were covered by insurance based on you or your spouse’s current work (job-based insurance) when you first become eligible for Medicare. You can enroll in Medicare without penalty for up to eight months after you lose your group health coverage or you (or your spouse) stop working.


3-General Enrollment Period (GEP). If you did not enroll in Medicare when you originally became eligible for it (either during your IEP or an SEP), you can sign up during the GEP. The GEP takes place January 1 through March 31 each year, with coverage starting July 1. You may incur a Part B late enrollment penalty and face gaps in coverage if you sign up during the GEP.


Signing up for Medicare:


To sign up for Medicare you can use one of these methods:

  • Visiting your local Social Security office

  • Calling Social Security at 800-772-1213

  • Mailing a signed and dated letter to Social Security that includes your name, Social Security number, and the date you would like to be enrolled in Medicare

  • Or, by applying online at www.ssa.gov

WE ARE HERE TO HELP:

As Independent Insurance Brokers, we are appointed by many of the major insurance carriers that offer Medicare policies in Virginia and West Virginia. We can help you sign up for Medicare and find the best Insurance policy for your individual situation. Contact us today at (540) 662-4432 to speak with one of our agents or visit our website medicaretrustedagents.com to obtain more information.


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