There are many options when it comes to selecting Medicare insurance plans. Whether you are enrolling in Medicare for the first time or you are not happy with your current plan, we can help you find a plan that is perfect for you.
Depending on the type of plan you are looking for, there are different times that you may enroll.
When can I Enroll in a Medicare Supplement?
You may actually apply for a Medicare Supplement at any time, however an insurance company does not have to accept you outside of your 6-month Medicare Supplement Open Enrollment Period (OEP), which begins the first day of the month that you are both 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B. During this period, insurance companies cannot use medical underwriting, which considers your health conditions.
If you would like to move plans outside of this period, you may still apply, but the insurance company may reject your application if you have health conditions.
If you are under 65 and on Medicare, you may or may not be able to purchase a supplement from a particular company. Insurance companies are not required by law to sell Medicare Supplements to those under 65.
There are other times that you may receive “guaranteed issue rights” to enroll in a Medicare supplement plan. Some of those instances include:
- Your Medicare supplement plan went bankrupt, committed fraud, or misled you
- You switched to Medicare Advantage using your trial right, less than a year has passed, and you want to switch back
- Your Medicare Advantage plan stops servicing your area
- You move out of your Medicare Advantage plan’s service area
You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan during the following periods:
- Initial Enrollment Period (IEP) – The seven month period, including the 3 months before, the month of, and the 3 months after you are first eligible to enroll in Medicare. This may be the month you turn 65 or the 25th month you have collected disability.
- General Enrollment Period (GEP) – January to March each year, you may sign up for Medicare if you did not sign up when you were originally eligible. You can sign up for Medicare Advantage through June if you sign up for Parts A and B during GEP. Coverage will start July 1 of that year.
- Part B Special Enrollment Period (SEP) – If you were covered by an employer health plan and did not accept Part B when it was originally offered, you can sign up for Medicare up to eight months after you lose employer coverage. You can enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan after you sign up for Part A and Part B.
- Open Enrollment Period (OEP) – Each year, October 15 to December 7, Medicare enrollees can make changes to their coverage. You can pick a new Medicare Advantage plan or switch between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage at this time.
- Other Special Enrollment Period (SEP) – There are other Special Enrollment Periods available where you may enroll in a Medicare Advantage plans. Visit Medicare.gov for more Special Enrollment Period options.