When Will My Medicare Advantage Start

Learn your Medigap effective date

by Amy De Vore+ on Dec 26, 2016 | 2 Comments

Medicare Advantage, also known as Medicare Part C, “replaces” Original Medicare with equivalent benefits.  They usually have small local networks of doctors, $6,700 out-of-pocket maximum and can offer extra benefits such as prescription drugs and dental coverage. If you have decided that a Medicare Advantage policy is the right insurance for you, then you will want to sign up when you’re first eligible.

What is the Medicare Advantage Initial Enrollment Period?

Medicare Advantage’s initial enrollment is a 7 month window that mirrors Original Medicare’s initial enrollment period. During this time, and at all other enrollment periods, you cannot be denied for health reasons, unless you have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD).

When is the Medicare Advantage Initial Enrollment Period?

The Medicare Advantage initial enrollment starts three months before your 65th birth month, the month of your birth month, and three months after.

If you decide to delay Part B enrollment because you have creditable coverage (usually job-based insurance), your initial enrollment will begin when you enroll in Part B. Try our Senior65 Deadline Calculator or see our Medicare Advantage start date chart below:

When you sign up for Medicare Advantage*: When your Medicare Advantage effective will begin:
3 months before your 65th birth month The 1st of your 65th birth month
During your 65th birth month The 1st of the following month
During the 3 months after your 65th birth month The 1st of the following month that you apply

*This whole chart assumes your Part B effective date is active

Learn More about Medicare AdvantageGet a MA Quote

What if you Miss the Medicare Advantage Initial Enrollment Period?

If you miss your initial enrollment period, don’t worry! You’ll never have to answer medical questions (except for ESRD), and you can apply during Medicare’s Annual Election Period (Oct 15 -Dec 7), every year. We at Senior65 consider ourselves the Medigap enrollment experts. We can help you choose a company that will work best for your health and financial needs, call our licensed independent insurance agents at 800-930-7956.


  • If your birthday falls on the first of the month both your Medicare part B and Medicare Advantage plan can start the first of the month proceeding your 65th birthday


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Reader Comments and Questions

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By Agnes on February 26, 2019

Hi: I turned 65 on Dec. 26, 2018. I know I have 7 months to start my initial enrollment period. I am still working. I believe the latest month that I can enroll w/o penalty is March 2019. I received many conflicting answers as to when the medicare take effect if I enroll in March 2019. Some representatives told me June 1, others told me April 1 and some told me May 1. According to your chart above, it shows one month after you enroll which is April 1. Appreciate if you would give me the confirmation. Thanks

Hello Agnes,
There are two things going on here. "When will your Medicare start" and "when will your Medicare Advantage start." As long as you are working, you can delay signing up for Medicare Part B. To learn more about when will your Medicare Part B will start click here.

Once you are enrolled in Part B, then you have a window to sign up for Medicare Advantage as explained above.

If your part B is active in March 2019, your Medicare Advantage coverage could indeed start April 1st.

We are appointed to help people research and enroll in Medicaree Advantage so please give us a call. We would love to help you!

-Michelle from Senior65.com

By Richard on July 10, 2018

Hello I'm 71 , am I going to have problems , adding part C to my medicare ? During the open enrollment period , OCT15 - DEC -15 2018.

Open Enrollment can be confusing. We can help you research and enroll in a plan over the phone. Just give us a call during open enrollment. There is no charge for our services and we guarantee the lowest price available by law. I want to clarify the date above. Open enrollment begins on Oct 15 but ends on Dec 7th.
-Michelle at Senior65.com

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