Switch from your ACA Marketplace Plan to Medicare without penalty — Deadline is September 30, 2018
By September 30, 2018, people over 65 still enrolled in an Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplace plan must have switched to Medicare Part B to avoid incurring a lifetime late-enrollment penalty.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) decided in 2016 that it would allow people to switch from an ACA plan to Medicare Part B without incurring the late-enrollment penalty.
Those who have already moved to Medicare and are paying the late-enrollment penalty can ask to have that penalty reduced or eliminated.
How does this affect you?
If you are over 65 and currently have a Marketplace plan: if you switch to Plan B after September 30th you will pay a lifetime late-enrollment penalty.
If you have a Marketplace plan and are turning 65 sometime this year: when you become eligible for Medicare, you will have an Initial Enrollment Period to sign up. For most people, the Initial Enrollment Period starts 3 months before their 65th birthday and ends 3 months after their 65th birthday.
Once you turn 65 and your Medicare Part A coverage starts, you won’t be eligible for a premium tax credit or other savings on your Marketplace plan. If you sign up for Medicare and still decide to keep your Marketplace plan, you will pay full price.
Also note: If you enroll in Medicare after your Initial Enrollment Period ends, you may have to pay a Part B late enrollment penalty for the rest of your life.
In addition, you can enroll in Medicare Part B (and Part A if you have to pay a premium for it) only during the Medicare general enrollment period (from January 1 to March 31 each year). Coverage doesn’t start until July of that year so beware of gaps in your coverage.
If you need help with your process, or need to check if you are on the right path, contact us at Trusty.care — we are here to help!
What action do I need to take?
What should I do if I want to cancel my Marketplace (ACA) Plan?
You should notify the insurer who provides your Marketplace (ACA) plan coverage at least 14 days prior to the start of your Medicare coverage.
Don’t end your Marketplace (ACA) Plan until you know for sure when your new coverage starts. Once you end ACA/Marketplace coverage, you can’t re-enroll until the next annual Open Enrollment Period (unless you qualify for a Special Enrollment Period.)
By Gus Smith
Trusty.Care, your trusted partner for all your Medicare decisions
Medicare mistakes can have severe financial and healthcare consequences, especially when you miss a deadline or sign up for the wrong plan. The streamlined Trusty.care platform helps you easily identify and sign up for the right plan, and optimize your health coverage for life.