You will be automatically signed up for Part A of Medicare if you collect benefits from Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board. However, even if you are not receiving these benefits, you still have the option of signing up for Medicare as long as you meet the overall program requirements.
If you are not signed up automatically, you may even choose to postpone your enrollment in the program. Just keep in mind that postponing too long may make your premiums higher in the future.
You can enroll in a Medicare insurance plan when you are 65 years of age. However, you can sign up before your birthday and begin enjoying benefits earlier.
There is a 7-month period when you can join one or more Medicare plans. This window opens 3 months before your 65thbirthday and closes 3 months after. For example, if your birthday is June 15th, your initial enrollment period is March 1stto September 30th.
Your initial enrollment period is not the only time you can select a Medicare plan. After this timeframe, you can join at the beginning of each year following your 65thbirthday from January 1st to March 31st.
If you delayed signing up for Medicare because of your coverage through an employer, the below special circumstances allow you to enroll. You will have an 8-month special enrollment period starting:
· The month after your employment end.
· The month after your group insurance plan ends.
Your Medicare costs may be higher if you sign up for Medicare after your initial 7-month period. Find out how much Medicare costs and how to avoid more expensive fees.