If you didn’t sign up for Medicare Part A and/or Part B when you were first eligible, you can sign up at the Social Security office or online during the General Enrollment Period between January 1–March 31. Your coverage will start the month after you sign up.
You will pay a monthly premium for Part B. Some people must pay a premium for Part A. Low income persons or those who didn’t earn premium-free Part A through working may qualify for the State Medicaid Medicare Savings Program to pay their premiums.
If you’re enrolling late for Part A or B you may be required to pay a late enrollment fee. The penalty amount is based on how long you went without coverage and is added to your monthly premium. Persons with Medicaid won’t have a penalty.
Iif you’re in a Medicare Advantage Plan (with or without drug coverage) you can switch to another Medicare Advantage Plan (with or without drug coverage) during this time. You can also unenroll from your Medicare Advantage Plan and return to Original Medicare. If you choose to do so, you’ll be able to join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan.
During this Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period, you CANNOT: switch from Original Medicare to a Medicare Advantage Plan, join a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan if you’re in Original Medicare, or switch from one Medicare Prescription Drug Plan to another if you’re in Original Medicare.
Contact MMAP at 800-803-7174 if you need help understanding your options.