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Your Medicare Initial Enrollment Period (IEP) takes place the 7 months surrounding your 65th birthday. During this time, you are able to apply for Original Medicare (Parts A and B) coverage.
When Does Medicare Initial Enrollment Take Place?
You are eligible for Medicare when you turn 65. The initial enrollment period (IEP) for Medicare, then, can begin 3 months prior to, the month of, and 3 months after your 65th birthday.
How To Apply During Your Medicare Initial Enrollment Period
During your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP), you may apply and enroll in:
- Original Medicare (Parts A and B)
- Medicare Prescription Drug Plan (Part D)
- Medicare Advantage Plan (Part C)
If you are collecting Social Security or Railroad Retirement benefits before your IEP starts, you will automatically be enrolled in Original Medicare. You are also automatically enrolled if you have received at least 2 years of disability benefits, or if you suffer from Lou Gehrig’s disease or end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
If you do not meet any of these requirements, it will be up to you to apply for coverage during your IEP. Applying for coverage early in your IEP will allow your coverage to start as soon as necessary. If you wait till the end of this 7 month period, you may experience a gap in coverage.
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