Hello there it is your Medicare insurance Plymouth agent, EnviZion Insurance. Today we are going to be talking about how to get your Medicare card when you are turning 65 years old and looking to enroll into Medicare. So first off, the thing that you need to know is that there are a couple of ways to actually get your medicare card, which will enroll you in Part A and/or Part B of Medicare. This is called Original Medicare and you get a red, white and blue Medicare card. There are three ways of doing this and the first one is going online to the social security website, which is www.ssa.gov. There’s a section on the front page that you click that says Medicare Enrollment. When you click on it, it will bring you to the next page where there will be a blue button that says “Apply for Medicare Only” and this will put you through the process of applying for Part A and/or Part B, which in most cases people will be do because enrolling in both Part A and Part B will give you access to enrolling in either a Medicare Advantage Plan or a Medicare Supplement Plan, which is the route for most people. This is the most popular out for people for starting out with Medicare insurance Plymouth.

The second way of getting your red, white and blue Medicare card, and enrolling in Part A and/or Part B is to call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY users 1-800-325-0778). And they’re open Monday through Friday from 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM. There can be very long wait times when it comes to calling Social Security, especially at peak times. Since Social Security services multiple types of government departments on top of Medicare, so if you plan to call it is usually best to try and call right away at 7am in the morning. If you have access to a computer, the online option is usually going to be the easiest and quickest route and will simplify things for you. However, calling is a fine option as long as you know that you may have to wait to talk to a representative and plan to call when you have enough time.

The third way that you can actually apply for your Medicare card is through your local medicare or local social security office, which can be convenient for many people. A lot of people do actually want to do go in person if they do not want to wait on the phone or have a computer to apply online. Going in person to your local social security office is a great option for many as well. As your Medicare insurance Plymouth agent we can help you with any of these three ways of getting enrolled and receiving your Medicare card.

There are times, however, when you do not actually need to go online or call Social Security to get your car and that is going to come up when a person is automatically going to get your card, because of a couple of specific situation. The first reasons is that you are already retired and collecting Social Security. So if you are already receiving social security, what will happen is you will automatically be enrolled into Original Medicare and get your red, white and blue Medicare card three months prior to your 65th birthday. Once you have your card, you can then, you know, double check the dates, make sure you’re enrolled in both Part a A and Part B. The second time you’ll be automatically, automatically enrolled is if you are collecting Railroad Retirement Board Benefits. If you are part of the Railroad Retirement Board and receiving those checks every month because you’re retired, again, the same sort of principle applies. You will receive your Medicare card three months before your 65th birthday. You should receive in the mail automatically without you doing anything. If your not sure if you will be enrolled automatically reach out your Medicare insurance Plymouth agent, EnviZion Insurance to help you find out.

Also it is good to not that if you are not automatically enrolled, and apply for your red, white and blue Medicare card in any of the three ways we explained you should receive the care in two to three weeks after applying.

One question we hear a lot is “When should I order my card or when should I apply for Medicare Part A and Part B”. This comes down to the general rule that you have a seven month time frame around your 65th birthday that allows you to enroll into Medicare and also into a medicare advantage or supplement plan. This seven month window is called your Initial Enrollment Period. The window is three months before the month of your birthday, the month of your birthday and the three months after your birthday. During this seven month window you are going to be eligible to enroll in Part A and Part B and Part D (prescription drug coverage) as well. Making sure to enroll during this seven month window is very important because if you do not you can incur any late penalties for your Part A or Part D (prescription drug plans) for each month that passes after your seven month Initial Enrollment Period. Being sure you are enrolled to avoid any penalties is something your Medicare insurance Plymouth agent, EnviZion insurance is more than happy to help you with.

There’s another part of your Initial Enrollment Period that is good to know about and it comes when you apply for your Medicare coverage. Depending on when you apply for you card will determine if there is a delay in when your coverage for Original Medicare coverage begins. If you apply for your card the month that you turn 65, your coverage will begin one month after you sign up. Now, if you wait until one month after you turn 65, your coverage will begin two months after you sign up. If you wait two months after you turn 65, your coverage will begin three months after you sign up. And then lastly, if you wait three months after you 65 (the very last month of your Initial Enrollment period), your coverage will also begin three months after you sign up. What to recognize here is that there is an increasing delay with your coverage the wait longer to enroll during your Initial Enrollment Period. Now, if you do decide to get ahead of the game and enroll during the three months before your birthday, you will get your card and your coverage will begin on the month you turn 65.

Another important thing to remember is that during your Initial Enrollment Period you also have the ability to enroll in a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement plan. Enrolling earlier allows gives you plenty of time to understand your options, and decide if a Medicare advantage or Supplement plan is right for you. If that is the route you’re going to take, which is the route most people take, it will allow you to enroll and have the coverage begin right on your 65th birthday for that Medicare Advantage or Supplement plan. Applying ahead of time in those first three months will begin your coverage without delay on your 65th birthday month, but waiting the month of your birthday up to the third month after your 65th birthday will delay your beginning coverage date.

The medicare application process can sometimes feel a little bit overwhelming and you may feel like you’re not sure what to do. But knowing your enrollment options and how the process works will help you successfully enroll in Medicare and get your Medicare card at the correct time. Also, if can be very helpful to get in touch with a Medicare insurance Plymouth agent like myself to get information on how to enroll in Original Medicare and also get help with understanding you options concerning a Medicare Advantage plan or Supplement plan. I hope this information is helpful for you, and look for more information like this from your Medicare insurance Plymouth agent EnviZion Insurance.