As you approach Medicare, it’s vitally important to have a plan that will help you maximize your coverage and lower your out of pocket spending. Your plan should start with the very basics; when, exactly, will you enter Medicare? When will you have the right to enroll in a private Medicare plan like Medicare Advantage or Medicare Supplement Insurance? We’ll help you get started with this guide to Connecticut Medicare eligibility requirements for 2023 plans.
The bulk of your coverage plan should revolve around your entry into Original Medicare, Parts A and B. You can’t add any kind of private option until you’re enrolled in Part A and B. As part of your plan, you should determine if you are, in fact, eligible for Medicare in the first place.
Medicare is open to everyone who is either a citizen of the United States or a permanent legal resident. Permanent legal residents must have been legally living in the U.S. for at least five years.
Now that you know if you will be able to enroll in Part A and Part B, you can determine when you’ll actually be able to enter the program and use your benefits. While most people can enroll when they turn 65, you might enter Medicare early if you:
If any of these apply to you, you’ll be able to enter Medicare before turning 65, no matter how young you are.
Most people, though, enter Medicare when they turn 65. In this case, you’ll have access to a seven month enrollment window. The window begins three months before your 65th birth month. For example, if you turn 65 in June, you can choose to enroll beginning in March. Your enrollment window will close at the end of September. As long as you enroll during this seven month window, you are considered to have enrolled on-time, and you won’t be subject to late enrollment penalties.
Many people choose to delay their enrollment if they plan to keep working and are covered by their employer’s plan. In this case, you’ll have the opportunity to enroll in Part B whenever your employer coverage ends.
Regardless of when you actually enter Parts A and B, this is only the start of your coverage. You’ll probably want to add a private Medicare Insurance plan in order to limit your out of pocket spending.
Enrollment into Part A and B of Original Medicare is also a trigger for your enrollment into a private plan. Part D drug plans and Medicare Advantage plans have eligibility rules that match Original Medicare.
Medicare Supplement Insurance, though, is a little different. There is no federal regulation requiring insurance companies to offer this coverage to people under age 65, even if they’re actively enrolled in Part A and B. This is determined on a state-by-state basis.
Connecticut is one of the few states that requires insurance companies to offer some Medicare Supplement coverage to people under 65. One potential problem is that Medicare Supplement Insurance companies in Connecticut aren’t required to offer all coverage options to people under 65. Instead, only a limited selection may be available to people under age 65. However, once you turn 65, you’ll have the ability to enroll in the full-complement of Medicare Supplement Insurance plans.
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