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How To Sign-Up For Medicare In Montana

Signing up for Medicare can feel overwhelming. In this step-by-step guide on how to sign up for Medicare, we take out the guesswork and walk you through the process for enrolling in Medicare in Montana.

In this article you will find:

How to Sign Up for Medicare Part A

  1. Make sure you meet Medicare eligibility qualifications:
    1. Initial Enrollment Period – 3 months before your 65th birth month and 3 months after
    2. Annual Enrollment Period – October 15 through December 7 each year to enroll in coverage for the following year (beginning January 1)
    3. Special Enrollment Periods – such as moving, retiring, losing Medicaid coverage, etc.
  2. Gather the following information to aid in your Medicare enrollment process
    1. Date and place of birth
      1. If you were born outside the United States or its territories, you will also need to know the name of your birth country at the time of your birth (it may have a different name now) and Permanent Resident Card number (if you are not a U.S citizen)
    2. Medicaid number and start/end dates (if applicable)
    3. Current health insurance information
      1.  Employment start and end dates for the current employer (of you or your spouse) who provides your health insurance coverage through a Group Health Plan
      2. Start and end dates for the Group Health Insurance provided by you (or your spouse’s) current employer
  3. Contact Social Security to sign up for Medicare Part A
    1. Apply online at the Social Security Administration website
    2. Apply over the phone by calling 1-800-772-1213 or TTY users can call 1-800-325-0778
    3. Apply in person by visiting your local Montana Social Security office

The Social Security Administration will verify your eligibility for Medicare benefits and determine if you qualify for premium-free Part A.

If you do not qualify for premium-free Part A, then you can elect to buy Part A coverage but you must also have Part B coverage.

After you apply for Medicare Part A, you will receive your Medicare Number. Then you can sign up for a myMedicare.gov account where you can manage your coverage and buy additional benefits.

How to Apply for Medicare Part B

Typically, a person will sign up for Medicare Part B when they sign up for Part A. During the Part A sign-up process, you are prompted to choose whether or not you want to enroll in Part B as well.

If you elected to not sign up during your initial enrollment, you can follow any of these steps to apply for Part B:

  1. Complete a Form CMS-40B (Application for Enrollment in Medicare Part B) and submit it to your local Social Security office by fax or mail
    1. You’ll also need to complete and send CMS L564 - Request for Employment Information, and a required proof of employment, Group Health Plan (GHP), or Large Group Health Plan (LGHP) coverage with your 40B form
  2. Apply over the phone by calling 1-800-772-1213 or TTY users can call 1-800-325-0778
  3. Contact your local Montana Social Security office

Once you are enrolled in Medicare Part B, you will pay a monthly premium. 

If you are signing up for Medicare Part B after your Initial Enrollment Period you may have to pay a late enrollment penalty of 10% for each full 12-month period you didn’t have Part B but were eligible to sign up.

How to Apply for Medicare Online

Floridians can save themselves a trip to the local Social Security office by applying for Medicare online. You can use any computer to get started.

When you apply online you can begin the Medicare application, stop and save it, and come back to complete your Medicare enrollment at any time.

Important: Make sure you are using a secure, personal device to complete the application.

  1. Gather the following information
    1. Date and place of birth
      1. Name of your birth country at the time of your birth (if you were born outside of the U.S.) and Permanent Resident Card number (if you are not a U.S citizen)
    2. Medicaid number and start and end dates (if applicable)
    3. Current health insurance information
      1. Including current employment start and end dates of you or your spouse depending on whose employer provides your health insurance coverage through a Group Health Plan
      2. Start and end dates for the Group Health Insurance 
  2. Go to www.ssa.gov/benefits/medicare and select “Apply for Medicare Only”
  3. Complete the online application process
  4. Select “Submit Now” to send your application electronically to Social Security

After you complete your online application for Medicare, you will see a receipt that you can print and keep in your records. You’ll also receive an application number. This number enables you to check on the status of your application.

Other Types of Medicare Coverage and Supplemental Coverage

Once you’ve signed up for Medicare Part A and Part B, you can choose to enroll in additional coverage. Parts A and B cover most inpatient, outpatient, and preventive care, but many beneficiaries find they need additional coverage such as prescription drug coverage, dental coverage, or vision coverage.

Medicare Part D plans are offered by private regional Montana health insurers and national insurers who are approved by Medicare. These plans help cover your prescription drug costs. 

Medicare Advantage plans often combine Part A and Part B with prescription drug coverage (known as MAPD plans) and other types of coverage (such as dental, vision, and hearing) to offer a more comprehensive all-in-one plan. These plans are also offered by private health insurance companies.

Medigap, or Medicare Supplement, plans help cover expenses not covered by traditional Medicare, such as copayments, coinsurance, and deductibles.

A licensed Montana Medicare advisor can help you compare plans and enroll in the one that is best for your needs. Complete the form below to get help comparing plans or to receive assistance with any Medicare question.

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