Do I have to wait until my employer’s Open Enrollment to start Medicare?
Right now, you are probably still working and using your employer’s health insurance or using your spouse’s health coverage through their employment.
You may be asking yourself, do I have to wait until Medicare’s open enrollment or my employee group health plan’s open enrollment to sign up for Medicare?
The answer is no!
Your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP) runs 3 months before your month of eligibility, the month of, and up to 3 months after. Your IEP is when you can sign up for Medicare. If you are delaying your Medicare because you are working and have health coverage through work, you can pick your IEP start date.
Here is an example.
Tom is 68 years old, is still working but now wants to retire on February 28th, 2021. He is worried that because his employee group health insurance’s Open Enrollment is in October, he will not be able to drop his coverage through work until then.
Tom is in luck. Because he wants to retire on the 28th and start Medicare on 3/1/21, his IEP will be December, January, and through February. He can sign up for Medicare in any of those 3 months and his Medicare will start on 3/1/21.
Tom will have no penalties and no loss of coverage.
Signing up for Medicare Part B after you have delayed it will require you to simply fill out two forms, one is signed by your employer.
This article was written by Chaz Mulherin, founder of MyMedicareHotline.com