Medigap has two types of enrollments that do not require you to answer medical questions. These periods of time are called a few different names, which can be confusing. Let us break it down for you, so that understand the different terms and their rules.
This article was written on May 19, 2015 and was updated on the date above.
Medigap Open Enrollment
We choose to call Medigap’s Open Enrollment period your, “initial enrollment.” The reason we call it your “initial enrollment” is many people confuse the term “Medigap Open Enrollment” with the “Medicare Open Enrollment” period.
Open Enrollment Medicare allows someone to change their Medicare drug or Medicare Advantage plan each year.
Looking for more information about Medicare Open Enrollment? Click the button below.
Medigap Open Enrollment generally only allows you ONE guaranteed enrollment period*, regardless of preexisting conditions**. This 6-month period begins when you are first eligible for Medicare Part B. This usually falls under one of two situations: 1) Turn 65 or 2) Leave your employer-sponsored coverage. At this time, you can enroll in any plan available in your area.
*In some states, if you have a current Medigap plan, you can switch with medical underwriting -such as the California Medigap Birthday Rule.
**Medigap plans may charge more for smokers. May is the operative word. Not all providers or states charge more. As well as, if you sign up right at 65 or during Medigap’s initial enrollment period, you may bypass this additional premium. Click on the button below to compare Medigap plan providers in your state.
Medigap Guaranteed Issuance Period
The Medigap Guaranteed Issuance Period is generally a 63-day period, starting with your qualifying event. This period is also called your Special Enrollment Period. At this time, you have certain rights to enroll in a new Medigap plan without having to answer medical questions, as well as an insurance company cannot apply a preexisting waiting period. Here are some of the circumstances that qualify you:
- Termination of your Medicare Advantage plan
- Move out of your Medicare Advantage area
- Trial Period
Read the article Medigap: 7 Ways to Qualify for Guaranteed Issuance to learn more about guaranteed issuance and open enrollment periods.
Medigap Plans Not Qualified for Guaranteed Issue
Some Medigap Plans like M, and N are NOT guaranteed during Guaranteed Issuance Period/Special Enrollment Period (they are allowed during your initial/open enrollment). These plans will require you to answer medical questions.
As you can see, Medigap enrollment has very specific time frames and rules, that you’ll want to adhere to in order enroll in the best plan for you. For further questions call 800-930-7956 or click here to get a Medigap quote.