There are several important ages you need to keep in mind. Some may get their retirement age, Social Security age, and their Medicare age confused. For some people, the age for these three important facets of growing older might be the same, but for others, it may be different. Generally, the age that Medicare is available to people is 65 or older.
How Old Do I Need to Be to Enroll in Medicare?
Typically, regardless of when you retire, your Medicare benefits will not start until you reach 65. In some cases, such as if you’ve worked in the United States for at least 10 years or 40 quarters, you will automatically be enrolled in premium-free Medicare Part A. This will happen when you’re 65.
There are some special cases in which you might not be 65 and receive Medicare benefits. If you qualify for disability, you might be able to receive benefits before turning 65. For example, if you have End-Stage Renal Disease or you have been receiving Social Security benefits for at least 24 months, you would be able to receive Medicare Part A benefits while under the age of 65.
If you are eligible for premium-free Medicare Part A, you can also enroll in Medicare Part B. Part B, however, does require a monthly premium.
What to Do Before Reaching the Medicare Age
Wondering what to do about your coverage if you retire early? You may have some options. For example, if your spouse is still working, you could be eligible to receive coverage under their group medical coverage.
If you cannot get coverage through your spouse, you can choose to purchase a health insurance policy. Due to current laws, you won’t be denied coverage under 65 for pre-existing conditions.
You may need to shop around to find the right plan for an affordable price. Until you reach the age of 65, unless you qualify for disability, you will have to pay for your complete coverage. This will change when you become eligible for premium-free Part A at 65. After, you will only need to pay your Part B premium, Part D premium (if you choose to enroll in Part D), and any deductibles and copayments associated with your Medicare coverage.
Do I Need to Reach a Certain Age for a Medicare Supplement?
Due to regulations, you can only get a Medicare Supplement (Medigap) plan once you have both Medicare Part A and Part B. This will typically be when you are 65 or older. For example, when you turn 65, if you are wanting complete medical coverage, you might want to enroll in a Medicare Supplement plan. This will ensure that you’re getting your Part A hospital inpatient coverage, your Part B outpatient coverage, and coverage for all of the gaps in Medicare. While you will typically have to wait until you’re 65 to get a Medicare Supplement plan, it might be important to consider adding one when the time is right for you.
Certain states allow for Medicare Supplement plans to be sold to those under the age of 65 if they qualify for disability. This varies from state to state, and the type of disability you have can also impact the type of coverage you get under the age of 65.
Nothing on this website should ever be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. You should always consult with your medical provider regarding diagnosis or treatment for a health condition, including decisions about the correct medication for your condition, as well as prior to undertaking any specific exercise or dietary routine.