If you are like most people you have been counting down the days to when you can leave the Obamacare system and enroll in Medicare.
When you are eligible for Medicare (which counts as qualifying health coverage) you are no longer eligible for a the advance payments of the premium tax credit and savings on out-of-pocket costs.
You should IMMEDIATELY end Marketplace coverage with premium tax credits or other cost savings when you become eligible for or are enrolled in Medicare
If you still want a Marketplace plan after you enroll in Medicare, you will have to pay full price for your share of the Marketplace plan without premium tax credits or other cost savings.
Note: Most Medicare insurance plans are less expensive than the plans on the Marketplace and almost all Medicare plans have no deductible!
When and how to end your Marketplace plan.
First you will want to enroll in Medicare (Both Parts A & B) about 3 months before your 65th birthday. You do this by contacting your nearest Social Security office or online at https://www.ssa.gov/medicare/
After you are enrolled in Medicare and you have received your confirmation letter from Social Security you will want to choose a Medicare Supplement plan or Medicare Advantage plan to replace your Obamacare plan.
Medicare is a complicated system and the insurance that works with Medicare is very different from the Marketplace plan that you have now. It is a good idea to meet with someone who can explain these plans and how they work.
You can compare Medicare supplement plans using the link below, but again, to really understand how these plans work and how those differences will effect you, it is a good idea to speak to a professional, licensed agent or broker in your state.
What if my spouse is under 65 and needs to stay on the Marketplace plan?
If both you and your spouse are on the same plan then the steps are basically the same with one additional step at the end.
STEP 2 – Enroll in a Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement
Once you are enrolled in Medicare you can then enroll in one of the many insurance plans available to Medicare beneficiaries. There are a lot of plans to choose from and once that choice has been made you will receive confirmation of your enrollment from your new Medicare insurance plan.
Step 3 – Cancel over the phone!
Trust me, I’ve been helping people through this process for a long time and calling is the best and easiest way to take of this.
Contact the Marketplace Call Center
The Marketplace lists about 40 steps to cancel your plan online and even more if you want to leave your spouse on the plan and at the end of those steps they ask that you call to complete the changes over the phone.
So, why go through the hassle and frustration of doing the work online if you have to call anyway. Just call the Marketplace and explain that you are enrolled in Medicare and need your Marketplace plan to end. They will complete the changes for you over the phone. If you insist on doing it yourself, you can find the official instructions here: https://www.healthcare.gov/reporting-changes/cancel-plan/
Step 4 – Protect yourself!
It is important that while you are on the phone with your Marketplace representative that you make a note of the date and time of the call, as well at the name of the representative and any application ID numbers or reference numbers that the rep gives to you.
This information will be crucial should the Marketplace fail to notify your insurance company of the changes and they try to bill you for the months that you were also covered by Medicare. If you can prove you called to cancel prior to starting your Medicare enrollment they will be able to complete the dis-enrollment retroactively.
But if you are unable to provide the date you called the Marketplace or if you did not call the Marketplace to cancel you may be responsible for the monthly premiums for the time up until they cancel your insurance.
According to the current rules in 2018 (these rules have changed every year) your coverage will end on the last day of the current month if you call the marketplace to cancel your insurance on or before the 15th of the month.
If you call after the 15th of the month before you start your Medicare insurance then your coverage will end on the last day of the next following month. This is why is so important to begin this process 3 months before your 65th birthday!
If you are getting close to the 15th and you are getting nervous, please call me and I can offer you some advice on how to proceed. (207-370-0143) When I meet with clients who are transitioning into the Medicare system I make sure to help them with each step along the way so important deadline are not missed.
“Don’t try to do this online unless you’re ending coverage for everyone on the plan. It is important to do this by phone so your spouse can stay on the plan.” -phone rep on healthcare.gov
If you have any questions about this or need help making a change, I will be happy to help you.
And it won’t cost you anything!
I do not charge anyone for my help, whether you enroll with me or not. I get paid by the insurance company when I deliver your application so once we pick the right plan I will help you fill out the application and I will turn it into the insurance company for you. It doesn’t get any easier than that!
You can use the BOOK APPOINTMENT(link is external) button below to set up a time to speak with me on the phone or in person. I can also send you information ahead of time to get you started.
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