California’s Medicare Supplemental Insurance law (AKA “Birthday Rule”) allows Medigap members to switch to a different insurance plan or provider around the member’s birthday. Members who take advantage of this new switching law cannot be turned down for the new plan because of a pre-existing condition.
This article was updated on November 12, 2019 to reflect new information.
As of July 1, 2020, Medicare Supplement enrollees who wish to exercise their guaranteed issue right under the CA Birthday Rule will have a 60-day open enrollment period vs. the current 30-days to purchase any Medicare Supplement coverage that offers benefits equal to or lesser than the benefits provided by their current plan.
Besides, as of July 1, 2020, a standardized plan and an Innovative plan are considered equal in benefits. This means if you have a standard F you can switch to Innovative F or F extra during the California Birthday Rule.
To take advantage of this rule, you must:
1) Live in California
2) Have an active Medigap plan
3) Switch to a Medigap plan with same or lesser benefits
4) Be within 30 days of your birthday
Why is the Birthday Rule Important?
In states without the Birthday rule, if your Medigap price dramatically increases you would either have to pay the new higher price or apply for a new plan and could be turned down for pre-existing conditions. In California, however, you can switch to a competitor within 30 days of your birthday and you are guaranteed to be approved. This protects you and gives you options.
CA residents should always check out Medigap prices as their birthday approaches. The best way to get a quote is to click on Medigap Quote. If you find the same plan for less with a different provider or just want to get on a less expensive plan, we can help you switch. To learn more, visit our Medigap Overview page.