Medicare

Sign Up for Medicare and Estimate Medicare Costs

November 7, 2019 • By

Reading Time: 2 Minutes

Last Updated: July 16, 2021

" "Affordable medical coverage is something everyone wants, especially as people age. Luckily, our nation has safeguards for workers as they get older. Millions of people rely on Medicare, and it can be part of your health insurance plan when you retire.

Medicare is available for people age 65 or older, as well as younger people who have received Social Security disability benefits for 24 months, and people with certain specific diseases. Two parts of Medicare are Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medicare Insurance). You are eligible for premium-free Part A if you are age 65 or older and you or your spouse worked and paid Medicare taxes for at least 10 years.  Part B usually requires a monthly premium payment.

You can apply online for Medicare even if you are not ready to retire. Use our online application to sign up. It takes less than 10 minutes. In most cases, once your application is submitted electronically, you’re done. There are no forms to sign and usually no documentation is required. Social Security will process your application and contact you if we need more information. Otherwise, you’ll receive your Medicare card in the mail.

You can sign up for Medicare on our website.

If you don’t sign up for Medicare during your initial enrollment window that begins three months before the birthday that you reach age 65 and ends three months after that birthday, you’ll face a 10 percent increase in your Part B premiums for every year-long period you’re eligible for coverage but don’t enroll. You may not have to pay the penalty if you qualify for a special enrollment period (SEP). If you are 65 or older and covered under a group health plan, either from your own or your spouse’s current employment, you may have a special enrollment period during which you can sign up for Medicare Part B. This means that you may delay enrolling in Part B without having to wait for a general enrollment period and without paying the lifetime penalty for late enrollment. Additional rules and limits apply, so if you think a special enrollment period may apply to you, read our Medicare publication, and visit the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for more information.

Health and drug costs not covered by Medicare can have a big impact on how much you spend each year. You can also estimate Medicare costs using an online tool.

Keeping your healthcare costs down allows you to use your retirement income on other things that you can enjoy. Social Security is here to help you plan a long and happy retirement. Visit our website today.

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About the Author

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner

Darlynda Bogle, Assistant Deputy Commissioner

Comments

  1. RAYMOND G.

    i will turn 65 in april 2021.can i sign up for medicare now ? or do i have to wait until january ?

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Raymond, thank you for using our blog. Generally, individuals receiving Social Security benefits are automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B. If you are at least 64 years and 9 months old and aren’t receiving Social Security benefits, you can apply for Medicare A and B online.

  2. Susan A.

    Ive read twice now that you automatically take out for part B at age 65 then How do I get to choose what company & plan I want to go with? Isn’t that up to me?

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Susan. If you have Medicare Parts A and B, you can join a Medicare Advantage plan (Part C). Medicare Advantage plans are offered by private companies that Medicare approves. To get additional information on Medicare benefits, check out http://www.medicare.gov/. You may also wish to contact your local Medicare SHIP (State Health Insurance Program Coordinator) to discuss your options. We hope this helps.

  3. Joe

    Hi, I’m currently receiving Social Security Retirement that I decided to take at age 62. At that time I was told by SSA that at age 65 I would be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part B. My question is: I will be moving to a foreign country and I want to stop the automatic enrollment to go into effect before I turn age 65. Can you guide me to what I need to do to stop it before I turn age 65

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Joe, thanks for using our blog. Check out our Frequently Asked Questions web page for details on how to terminate Medicare. We hope this helps!

  4. Burnis S.

    Where do I get a form 1763 on this website?

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Burnis, thanks for using our blog. Check out our Frequently Asked Questions web page for details on how to terminate Medicare Part B. We hope this is helpful!

  5. Francisca

    Good Afternoon, I recently became a US citizen and my name has changed, the name change was not a court order change, it was changed during my citizenship interview, the interviewer change my name on my citizenship application. As a result my name was changed without a court order. Can I use my citizen certificate with my new name and use my drivers license witch still has my original name to update my Social Security records?

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Francicsca, thank you for using our blog. For specific questions regarding your documents, you will need to call us at 1-800-772-1213 for assistance or you can contact your local Social Security office. Please look for the general inquiry telephone number at the Social Security Office Locator. The number may appear under Show Additional Office Information. Please be aware that our call wait times are longer than normal. We hope this information helps.

  6. Mary J.

    Good morning! I hope you can answer my question, concerning my Part A premium. I currently am paying the full amount of $458.00, since I don’t have 40 work credits. However, I do have 33 work credits. According to the Medicare .gov website, the Part A premium is $252 for those who have 30-39 credits. Is this correct, and if so, how long does it generally take for the reduced premium rate to apply? Thank you in advance!!!

    • Ann C.

      Hi, Mary. For your security, we do not have access to private information in this venue. We ask that members in our Blog community work with our offices with specific questions. You can contact your local Social Security office for assistance. We hope this helps.

      • Mary J.

        Yes it does, and thank you for your quick response! I will call my local office shortly!!

  7. Joseph M.

    Hi, I took early Social Security Retirement at age 62. Will I be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part-A and Part-B or do I have to apply for Medicare when I turn age 65?

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Joseph, thank you for using our blog. Generally, individuals receiving Social Security benefits are automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B. If you are at least 64 years and 9 months old and aren’t receiving Social Security benefits, you can apply for Medicare A and B online.

  8. jeanne m.

    requesting fax number to send my medicare application

    • Vonda V.

      Hi Jeanne, thank you for using our blog. Generally, individuals receiving Social Security benefits are automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B. If you are at least 64 years and 9 months old and aren’t receiving Social Security benefits, you can apply for Medicare A and B online.

      If you already have Medicare Part A and need to sign up for Medicare Part B, there are some forms that you will need to complete and submit. See our Frequently Asked Questions web page for options on how to submit those forms.

  9. HIROYUKI N.

    On this May 28th, I already turned 65. However, I’m waiting from 3/16/2020, but I can’t change the plan because the Medicare card has not arrived. We’re in trouble, the insurance for HMSA, which the couple had joined, was automatically canceled.

  10. HIROYUKI N.

    My current status is proseccing: 03/16/2020,Benefit Application Pending, and 03/16/2020, Medicare benefit application was received. How long will I waiting to get my medicare card or medicare card number?
    How long will I waiting for second Telephone Appointment “Health Insurance” with Japanese interpreter?
    Maybe I have to sign up to medicare premium plan?
    Please let me know by text.

Comments are closed.