If you are three months away from your 65th birthday and already turning your attention to Medicare and trying to determine the right plan for you, you’ve come to the right place. At Game Changing Benefits, our goal is to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about your health insurance. First, let’s look at eligibility and how Medicare works on and around your 65th birthday.
Exactly three months before your 65th birthday month, you will become eligible to apply for Medicare coverage. This initial enrollment period starts three months before your birth month and ends three months after. You can enroll in Part A, B, C, or D.
There are instances where an individual may be eligible under 65 – mainly due to kidney failure, Lou Gehrig’s disease, or a disability that meets Medicare’s requirements while under 65.
How to Know If Your Disability Is Eligible
To be eligible under the age of 65, you must have a disability, and you must have been receiving Social Security Disability benefits for 24 months or more to qualify.
If you suffer from kidney failure or are living with Lou Gehrig’s disease, you are not required to prove that you have been collecting benefits for 24 months before applying for Medicare, however you do have your own time limits:
- Those with kidney failure must apply for Medicare three months after dialysis begins or three months after a kidney transplant
- Those with Lou Gehrig’s disease must apply for Medicare immediately upon collecting their disability benefits
If you find that you meet the disability eligibility requirements for Medicare but are not eligible for Society Security benefits, you will be required to pay a monthly premium on any Medicare plan you sign up for.
The Next Steps
If you tick all the boxes and are ready to sign up to receive Medicare coverage, you should receive a welcome card from Medicare in the mail as soon as the specified period of time has passed. If you do not receive this card, you will need to contact the Social Security office to determine where your enrollment stands.
Once signed up, you receive the same standard of coverage as someone who has become eligible by age – with the different plans offering different levels of medical and hospital coverage depending on your unique needs.