Medicare’s Annual Election Period (AEP) occurs every year from October 15 to December 7. This means that the AEP Medicare for 2023 is already over – unless you qualify for a “Special Enrollment Period.” Apart from that, as a future recipient, you might not yet be aware of this particular term and its implications. That’s why it makes sense to have a look at it even now, so you are prepared for the next year.
What is AEP Medicare?
As already mentioned above, the abbreviation stands for the “Annual Election Period” (sometimes also referred to as “Annual Enrollment Period.”)
During this time, recipients of Medicare can switch their respective prescription drug plans. Medicare Advantage plans go from a Medicare supplement plan to a Medicare Advantage plan or vice versa.
Medicare recipients usually receive their annual notice of changes from their insurance company around September of each year. Reviewing this document every year is crucial because it tells you about the benefits for the following year according to your current plan. Medicare plans can change from year to year, so reviewing those changes can help you decide whether you want to shop for a different plan.
If you decide to change your plan, the deadline for doing so is December 7, for an effective date of January 1. After that date, you’ll remain in your plan for the upcoming year unless qualifying special enrollment criteria apply to you.
What to look out for
Sometime around November, the CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) usually announces the Medicare rate increases, such as deductibles and premiums for the following year. It is important to be aware of what these future rates are going to be, especially regarding the Part B Premium. As anyone on Social Security knows, this directly affects how much money will be deducted from your monthly Social Security check.
Special Enrollment Criteria
Under certain circumstances, you might qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, which allows you to make changes regarding your coverage outside the regular Medicare AEP.
Among these circumstances are certain life events in the household of a Medicare recipient:
- Getting married
- Birth or adoption of a child, placement of a child in foster care
- Divorce/legal separation and the related loss of health insurance because of this
- Death in the family of a person that was a member of your plan, and related loss of eligibility of coverage
You can find more information about these criteria here.
Any further Questions?
If you have questions regarding Medicare AEP or any other Medicare-related subject, feel free to call or send us an e-mail. We look forward to hearing from you!