If you are eligible for Medicare Part A, you are able to purchase a Medigap plan if you do so during the open enrollment period, which is the six month period immediately following your enrollment in Medicare Part A. You must also be enrolled in Medicare Part B to qualify for Medicare supplemental insurance. You are not obligated to purchase a supplemental plan during this open enrollment period, but failure to do so could cause problems later on if you change your mind or experience medical problems that would justify this additional coverage.
Make an informed decision about Medigap insurance
It is essential for you to be well informed when shopping for Medigap insurance coverage. Knowing your options and understanding the included benefits decreases the likelihood of later discovering that you are underinsured. A very helpful tool is to compare the different companies that offer this type of coverage. Differences between insurance companies can include:
Participating provider network
Customer Service history
Keep in mind that with this type of coverage it is really simple to compare rates because of the standardized polices. Even though policies have the same benefits (5for example Plan F from Humana will have the same benefits as Plan F from Blue Cross) premium quotes may vary.
Which Medicare Supplemental Plan is best for you?
Before making any decision you should try to best determine and anticipate your likely future health care needs. Because different Medigap insurance plans provide different benefits, make sure you understand each one of these benefits and how they might relate to your health status. For example, if you are interested in benefits for preventive health care you should lean towards one of the policies that offer this benefit.
Once you decide which Medicare Supplemental Plan will best fit your needs, the next step is to find out which insurance companies offer this Plan so that you can compare their rates. Working with a health insurance broker that is licensed to sell Medigap insurance plans from multiple insurance companies is a great place to start. You will not pay an additional fee for the convenience of working with a broker because the premiums are determined by the insurance company and can’t be altered.
How do I get Medicare Supplement insurance quotes?
Getting a Medicare Supplement insurance quote online is now a simple and secure process. Keep in mind that sometimes personal information is required in order to provide you with your list of plan options. The information listed below should be sufficient enough for any broker to provide you with a quote:
State of Residence
Medicare Part A and Part B enrollment
Medicare Supplement insurance quotes tips
Start your researching a quote requests at least 3 months in advance of becoming Medicare eligible. Rates are subject to change and could adjust slightly by the time that you are qualified to enroll in a Medigap plan. So, have a first choice and a second choice plan for back up.
Visit the Medicare.gov website to make sure that you are looking at all of the options available in your state. They have a very useful “Plan Locator” tool that will provide you with a comprehensive list.
Work with a licensed broker in your state that represents the majority of the insurance companies on the list you have obtained from Medicare.gov. If you can’t find an agent for all of your Plan options, you may need to contact the insurance carrier directly.
Purchasing process for a Medicare Supplemental Plan
Once you have chosen the right Medicare Supplemental Plan, you will need to complete the application and approval process. This can be simple if done timely and accurately.
Filling the application
Your agent or broker that assisted you with selecting the right Plan will also be able to provide you with the necessary enrollment application. Every insurance company has their own application, so make certain that the application agrees with the insurance company that you have selected. These applications are usually quick and easy to complete and are just 2-3 pages in length.
The application can be delivered to your agent, who will submit it on your behalf. An initial premium payment may be required along with the application. Always make the check payable only to the insurance company.
Receiving Approval and ID Cards
If your application is completed properly, approval should only take 5-10 business days. You will receive notice of approval prior to receiving your insurance ID cards, which will typically arrive 2-3 weeks later. Your coverage will always become effective on the first day of the month following the date that your application was submitted.