Are you turning 65 or retiring before the end of 2019?
Do you need to get your Medicare ducks in a row to avoid being left without coverage?
Were you too cheap to buy my book “Medicare for the Lazy Man 2019” on Amazon?
Here is my advice in a nutshell. Keep in mind that this is generalized for most people in typical circumstances who will be new to Medicare.
- Steer your computer to https://www.ssa.gov/medicare in order to begin the online enrollment process. Most people should be able to knock this out quickly.
- Your goal in every case is to enroll in Medicare Part A to begin at the earliest possible time. Generally, this will be the 1st day of your 65th birthday month.
- Enroll in Medicare Part B for the same date OR to coincide with the end of your current medical coverage, if applicable.
- There is a monthly cost for Part B so don’t waste your money by enrolling too early. Also, don’t forget to enroll in a timely manner or you will risk having skimpy coverage for medical treatment and possibly incur a lifetime late enrollment penalty if you are really late.
- Purchase a Medicare Supplement plan from an insurance professional. This person may have an agenda: do not let him talk you into buying a Medicare Advantage plan. Tell him you insist on a Supplement plan or nothing!
- In my opinion, there are two excellent Supplement plans to consider: a) Plan F is the most comprehensive insurance protection you can have under Medicare; b) High Deductible Plan F is my personal favorite for almost everyone. It provides the most bang for your buck and is so good the government plans to restrict access to it next year.
- Think about a Prescription Drug Plan (PDP). Sure, you may be healthy as a horse right now and want to save a few bucks in monthly premium. Just be aware that “they” will be laying for you and there will be a lifetime penalty to pay if you ever decide to buy a PDP in the future.
There it is, the capsule version of my advice for those approaching Medicare. To really immerse yourself in more exciting insurance discussion, buy my book!