Medicare And Working Past 65
If you plan to keep working or you have employer health coverage or through a spouse, you have some options to consider when signing up for Medicare. This article “Medicare and Working Past 65” will give you general knowledge so that you research it more to make the right decision.
Enrolling in Medicare when working past 65
Before you make any decisions you first have to understand that it might not be your decision. The law is very clear who has to sign up and when so that you don’t face any late penalty charges down the road. Here is a short breakdown…
- If an employer has 20 or more employees, generally you can choose to delay Medicare enrollment, drop your employer coverage for Medicare, or have both Medicare and employer coverage.
- If an employer has fewer than 20 employees, generally you will need to enroll in Medicare during your Initial Enrollment Period.
- If you have health coverage through a spouse’s employer, you may be able to delay or you may need to enroll at age 65. You can have both Medicare and employer coverage. What you can do will depend on the employer’s rules.
Delaying Medicare Part A & B
If you qualify to delay both Medicare Parts A & B, you can do so without penalty as long as you enroll within eight months of either losing your (or your spouse’s) employer coverage or ceasing to work, whichever comes first. You will enroll during a Special Enrollment Period and will need to also provide written proof of creditable drug coverage to avoid Part D penalties.
Enrolling only into Part A
Medicare Part A is usually premium-free for most people, so you could opt to enroll in only Part A while still working. However, if you have a health savings account (HSA), be aware that once you enroll in any part of Medicare you cannot continue to make contributions to your HSA.
Creditable Drug Coverage
Before you officially delay Medicare, make sure you have creditable drug coverage. This means your employer’s drug coverage is at least as good as the standard Medicare Part D plan coverage. If your employer’s drug coverage isn’t creditable, you will need to enroll in a Part D plan during your Initial Enrollment Period to avoid the.
Consequently, you’ll also need to get either Part A or Part B in order to get a Part D plan.
Who Do I Need To Call?
You don’t need to call anyone unless you’re receiving Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board benefits.
If you are receiving either, you’ll be automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A & B when you turn 65, and you’ll need to let Social Security know you wish to delay Part B.
By law though, if you receive Social Security benefits you must also have Medicare Part A.
You can call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 between 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Wait times to speak to a representative are typically shorter Wednesdays through Fridays or later in the day.
Special Enrollment Period
When you retire or lose your employer coverage, you will have an 8-month Special Enrollment Period in which to enroll in Medicare. You will have up to 8 months to enroll in Parts A and/or B, but only the first two months to enroll in Parts C and/or D.
What to consider?
Everyone’s situation is different, we highly recommend that you compare your work coverage with what Medicare offers. I have seen many times where people have found that Medicare is much more robust coverage than what you get from work.
Of course, some people have great coverage at work, and if you are one of those lucky ones, you might want to consider delaying Medicare. I always recommend you talk to your HR department if you have one and you sit down with a licensed insurance agent who does Medicare. That way you can see both options so that you can make wise decisions for yourself.