It’s important to know the different Medicare enrollment periods so that you don’t miss your chance to get Medicare coverage. Also, there can be penalties if you wait too long to sign up!
Initial Enrollment Period
This is the first time you can sign up for Medicare. The 7 month period begins 3 months before your 65th birthday month, includes the month you turn 65, and continues the three months after your birthday.
During this time you can sign up for Medicare Part A, B, C and D.
Special Enrollment Period
This period applies to people who choose to keep their current health insurance (not Medicare) past their 65th birthday.
For Parts A and B, your Special Enrollment Period is while you’re still covered under an employer, or during the 8 months following the month your employer health coverage ends (or when the employment ends).
Special Enrollment for Parts C and D takes place during the 63 days after the employer health plan ends (or when the employment ends).
General Enrollment Period
Each year from January 1st through March 31st you can enroll in Original Medicare (parts A and B).
If you need to enroll in Part A, you must also enroll in Part B during this time.
Open Enrollment Period
Each year from October 15th through December 7th you can sign up for Medicare Part C (Medicare Advantage) and Part D (Prescription Drug Plan).
Medigap Open Enrollment Period
This six month period starts the month you turn 65 (and are enrolled in Part B). During this time, you can sign up for a Medicare Supplement plan (Medigap) and it will be guaranteed issue.
If you are entering into an enrollment period and are interested in enrolling in Medicare coverage, please give one of our licensed sales agents a call at 888-738-6356 (TTY: 711). They are available to help you Monday – Friday, 6am – 5pm PT.