Medicare Advantage, also known as Medicare Part C, “replaces” Original Medicare with equivalent benefits. They usually have small local networks of doctors, $7,550 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 should 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, goes on for the month of your birth, and ends 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

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.