Offered by: Jennifer Bell – Bell Benefits, LLC
When a person turns 65 and already has health insurance, it can be really complicated to figure out what is required when you’re looking at Medicare.
You might have another type of health coverage like Employer Health Coverage, Retiree Coverage, COBRA, VA Benefits or an individual health plan when you turn 65. Each plan comes with a different set of rules and it’s important to understand your particular situation.
First, let’s talk about the term “credible coverage.” Medicare uses this term for your “other” types of health insurance. If you don’t have credible coverage, you need to have Medicare Parts A, B & D to avoid unwanted penalties.
Credible coverage is insurance that can take the place of Medicare without you incurring a penalty. There seems to be one main form of credible coverage in the eyes of Medicare. This is the employer coverage you have from either your own or your spouse’s active employment (one of you is still working).
Not all employer health plans are credible but most are. It is best to check with your HR department to confirm.
If coverage is not credible, then you would need to have both Medicare Parts A, B & D in place to avoid incurring a penalty later in life.
If you have the following types of health coverage, you will also need Medicare in place to avoid a penalty on Parts B & D: most COBRA plans, Retiree Coverage, Veterans Administration benefits, or Individual Health Insurance.
An interesting point, although VA benefits are not credible coverage for Part B, they are credible coverage for Part D.
I’m happy to help you sort out your personal options.