• Medicare

    Senior Associations

    There are several senior association and organizations that advertise Medicare Supplement Policies (Medigap). The first one to come to mind rhymes with AARB. These organizations do not actually act as insurers. Instead, they negotiate deals with insurance companies to offer Medigap policies to their members, supposedly at a reduced rate. These organizations may appear to exist for the benefit of older individuals, offering a number of programs or services for seniors. However, many these so-called benefits are in nearly worthless. In truth, these organizations exist to sell themselves through membership dues and products (including overpriced insurance) behind a façade of protecting seniors. The best way to own whether the policies…

  • Medicare

    4 Medicare Changes for 2019

    Medicare Part B premiums are going up  As covered in an earlier post, though Medicare Part A, which covers hospital visits, is usually free for Medicare enrollees, Part B, which covers doctor visits and diagnostics, charges a premium for coverage. In 2018, the standard monthly premium is $134, but that figure is up by $1.50 a month next year to a total of $135.50. However, if you’re a higher earner, you could end up paying significantly more for Medicare Part B. Medicare deductibles are also going up When you utilize healthcare services under Medicare, you’re subject to an out-of-pocket deductible that must be met before your coverage kicks in. The…

  • Medicare

    Medicare Part B Monthly Premium for 2019

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently announced their cost adjustments, and you’ll be happy to know that the standard Medicare Part B monthly premium for 2019 most beneficiaries starting in January will be $135.50, a modest increase of just $1.50 per month over 2018’s standard premium. There are, however, a small group of Medicare beneficiaries (about 2 million people) who will actually pay less than $135.50 because the 2.8 percent cost-of-living increase in their Social Security checks will not be large enough to cover the full premium increase. Thanks to the Social Security Act’s “hold harmless” provision, Medicare cannot pass along premium increases greater than the dollar increase…

  • Medicare

    A New Enrollment Period for Medicare Advantage Will Open in 2019

    A new enrollment period for Medicare Advantage will begin in 2019 thanks to the 21st Century Cures Act that was signed into law on December 13, 2016. Under the current structure, the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) runs from October 15th – December 7th. Medicare Advantage plan members are allowed to switch Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans, as well as return to original Medicare and purchase a Medicare Supplement if you choose. There is no limit to how many times you can switch MA Plans, but the last selection made by December 7th is final. Following the Annual Enrollment Period (AEP) and beginning January 1, 2019 a new enrollment period…