Part D Medicare Coverage: When should I sign up?

If you sign up too late you can be charged a penalty

by Katie Banks+ on May 08, 2014

Medicare Part D is prescription drug coverage which can provide big discounts on your senior prescription costs. We get lots of requests on when is the best time to sign up for coverage.

When to Sign Up for Rx Coverage?

You should sign up for Part D during your 7 month initial enrollment which begins three months before your 65th birth month, the month of your 65th birthday, and 3 months after.

Can I Delay Part D Enrollment?

You can delay Part D prescription drug enrollment, however you may pay a penalty and it may not be beneficial to do so. Here are two reasons you may want to delay: 1) You have creditable coverage through your job-based insurance, or 2) You don’t have expensive Rx costs.

If you have job-based insurance you should be covered and more than likely will not pay the Part D penalty. On the other hand, even if you don’t have expensive Rx costs currently if you have an emergency or change in health it could cost you thousands of dollars. As well as you could accrue a hefty penalty.

Part D Penalty

The Part D penalty is 1% of the cost of the national premium $32.42 (2014) for EACH month that you were not enrolled. For example if you weren’t enrolled for 4 years (48 months) you would pay 48% extra for your Part D premium -increasing your plan to $47.98, and of course the monthly premium can go up each year.

You will accrue this penalty if you enroll after your initial period and didn’t have creditable coverage or if you lose your creditable coverage and didn’t enroll within 63 days.

Another Way to Get Rx Coverage

Besides job-based insurance, some Medicare Advantage plans offer Rx coverage, as well as, some older Medigap plans used to offer Rx coverage. If you want a new Medigap policy you’ll need to enroll in a separate Prescription Drug Plan.

To learn more about Medicare Part D call the number above. If you would like to learn more about Medicare Insurance click here to get an instant quote.

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