Medicare can be a confusing topic to navigate, especially for those who have not had any experience with it yet. From wondering what ACA implications have to do with Medicare, if anything, to learning the different components of Medicare coverage, it’s easy to make mistakes. Unfortunately, Medicare mistakes can be very costly and time consuming!
Perhaps the worst assumption people make about Medicare is that they don’t qualify for it, because they haven’t worked long enough. The fact is that if you’ve earned 40 credits through payroll taxes at work (about 10 year’s worth of work), you won’t have to pay premiums for Part A services, which mainly covers hospital insurance. You actually don’t need any work credits to qualify for Part B, which covers doctor’s services, outpatient care, and medical equipment.
What are some other common mistakes? Here’s a brief rundown.
Failing to Enroll in Part B on Time
Were you aware that if you don’t enroll in Part B when you’re supposed to, you could actually incur penalty costs? Let’s say you have health coverage beyond the age of 65 from an employer for whom you or your spouse actively works. If that employer has 20+ staff, you can delay part B enrollment without having to pay the penalty. But if this is not the case, you’ll need to sign up during your seven-month initial enrollment period.
Assuming Retiree Healthcare Coverage Replaces Medicare Part B
In many plans, Medicare is actually automatically your primary coverage if you have a retiree plan. Many people don’t realize this, and that they have to enroll in part B otherwise they may be stuck with no coverage at all when they retire.
Not Understanding Full Retirement Age
Retirement age for most individuals is not 66 years of age. However, to avoid late penalties you must sign up for Medicare when you turn 65, unless you have health coverage from your own or your spouse’s current employment.
This is just a brief overview of the common mistakes people make in regards to Medicare coverage. A few others include; assuming you don’t need Part D coverage because you don’t take prescription drugs, choosing a Part D drug plan based solely on the premium or the fact that someone you know uses it, or simply misunderstanding enrollment periods.
The fact of the matter is, if you or your working spouse are approaching retirement or retirement age, it’s time to start exploring what your options are. The licensed insurance agents at Omaha Insurance Solutions are here to answer any of your questions you may have about Original Medicare, an Omaha Medicare Advantage Plan, and any other Medicare concerns you may have. Please contact us today at (855) 367-3631.
You can also find more information at Medicare.gov.