By the time a person reaches the age where they're able to enroll in Medicare, it's often assumed that they are retired. However, this might be the norm, but it is not the rule. Whether you're a business owner or just not ready to leave your job yet, if you're 65, still working and considering Medicare, you probably have several questions; here is some help:
Company Size Matters
Enrollment in a Medicare supplemental plan is typically required once you reach the age of 65. However, rules are different if you are still employed. When you are covered under an employer's plan, you may not have to adhere to this mandate, as you may meet the requirements of the small employer exception.
Under this guideline, if you work for a company that has fewer than 20 employees, you are not required to enroll in Medicare, but you can. However, if your employer has more than 20 employees and you do not enroll in Medicare at your time of eligibility, you may face penalties.
Who Pays First?
If you do decide to enroll in Medicare coverage, the next question you likely have is who will pay your medical bills first. This is a good question and to determine the answer, you again must consider your employer. If the company size is greater than 20 employees, then your employer plan will be the primary coverage, meaning they will pay first.
If your employer has less than 20 employees, your Medicare plan will be your secondary plan, meaning they will pay only after your primary insurance has paid. Knowing this information is crucial as it can give you a better idea of any costs you might personally incur.
You Need to Act Fast When You Stop Working
It's important for you to understand that as soon as you start working, you need to start looking up your Medicare options. If you fell under the small employer exception, the period immediately after your employment ends, you enter your Medicare eligibility period.
If you do not enroll within a timely manner, you will be subject to penalties, such as a late enrollment fee. You can avoid this by seeking coverage promptly. Additionally, even if you're still working, should the size of the company increase beyond 20 employees, you will be required to obtain coverage.
Make sure you are analyzing your situation to determine whether or not you need to obtain Medicare coverage and when, if you're still working. Contact a Medicare supplements service for more information and assistance.