Medicare Advantage is a special form of Medicare. It’s unique in that it’s exclusively sold via private insurance, and benefits can vary from one plan to another. Despite differences between the plans themselves, the opportunities to enroll are the same.
When Is The Earliest Time I Can Get A Medicare Advantage Plan?
The earliest enrollment window you have for joining Medicare Advantage is during the Initial Enrollment Period (IEP). The exact timeframe is specific to you, as it takes place from the three months before you turn 65, and it ends three months after you turn 65.
There is only one IEP, and if you miss this, you will need to wait until a Special Enrollment Period (SEP) or the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP).
What Is Special Enrollment, And When Does It Take Place?
The Special Enrollment Period (SEP) consists of various time windows according to specific circumstances. In the majority of these cases, this is not restricted to a particular time of year.
The one SEP related to Medicare Advantage that takes place during a specific time of year is the one beginning after the General Enrollment Period (GEP) ends. The GEP lasts from January 1 to March 31, and only allows for Original Medicare (Part A and Part B) enrollment. Once you’ve joined Original Medicare, you have between April 1 and June 30 to join Medicare Advantage.
As for other instances, you can join Medicare Advantage within two months after one of the following occurs:
- Losing employer coverage
- Moving back to the US after having lived in a foreign country
- Being released from an institution
Losing Medicaid eligibility also qualifies as a SEP, though this time window lasts until three months after losing eligibility.
When Is The Annual Enrollment Period?
The AEP allows for individuals to join Medicare Advantage from October 15 to December 7. You must already have Original Medicare in order to make use of this enrollment period. You cannot use the AEP if you do not already have a Medicare policy.
If you already have Medicare Advantage, you have the chance to switch to a different Medicare Advantage Plan, add a Part D drug plan (if your current Medicare Advantage Plan doesn’t offer drug coverage), or drop your Part D policy in favor of a Medicare Advantage Plan that has prescription drug coverage.
Prepare For The Next Enrollment Period Today
At Medicare Sharks, we want you to get the benefits that are rightfully yours. We’re here to help ensure that not only will you get the best Medicare Advantage Plan available, but you’ll be able to get it at the lowest price as soon as possible. Call us today at (561) 288-2080. You may also reach us at (561) 288-2396.