Medicare – How to Enroll

When should I apply?

Medicare eligible retirees must enroll in Medicare Part B to continue to be covered under an EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plan.  A spouse/civil union or domestic partner who is enrolled as a dependent under an EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plan must also enroll in Medicare Part B when they become eligible for Medicare, regardless of whether they are retired or actively employed.

Retirees who are less than 65 years old:  Contact Social Security three months prior to your 65th birthday.

Retirees who are 65 at the time of retirement: Contact Social Security to enroll three months prior to your retirement date.

Initial enrollment period for Medicare Part B

You have a seven-month period in which to sign up for Medicare Part B (medical insurance).  A delay on your part will cause a delay in coverage and result in higher premiums.  If you are eligible at age 65, your initial enrollment period begins three months before your 65th birthday, includes the month you turn age 65 and ends three months after that birthday.

Failure to enroll in Medicare Part B during the initial enrollment period also means you will need to wait until the next Medicare Part B open enrollment period which is January 1 – March 31, with an effective date of July 1.

When does my enrollment in Medicare Part B become effective?

If you accept the automatic enrollment in Medicare Part B, or if you enroll in Medicare Part B during the first three months of the initial enrollment period, your Medicare Part B will start with the month you are first eligible.  If you enroll during the last four months, your plan will start from one to three months after you enroll.

You must provide the EUTF with proof of your Medicare Part B enrollment within 60 days of becoming eligible.  Failure to do so will result in cancellation of your EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plans.

Medigap & Other Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug Plans

The EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plans cover many of the same benefits as a Medigap policy.  Therefore, careful consideration should be taken before you enroll in a Medigap plan as enrollment in a non-EUTF Medigap or any other Medicare Advantage and Prescription Drug plan may jeopardize your enrollment in an EUTF retiree medical or prescription drug plan.

Medicare enrollment and Active employment

While you are still an active employee with an EUTF employer, you are not required to enroll in Medicare.  Medicare enrollment is only required for coverage under retiree plans.  However, if you are enrolled in an EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plan as a dependent and are eligible for Medicare Part B, you are required to enroll in Medicare B even if you are still actively working.

If during your retirement, you are actively employed and covered by another employer’s health plan, you will still be required to enroll in Medicare Part B in order to continue coverage under the EUTF retiree medical and/or prescription drug plans.