The Social Security Administration (SSA) announced that all local Social Security offices will be closed to the public for in-person service starting Tuesday, March 17, 2020. However, their secure and convenient online services remain available at www.socialsecurity.gov . Local offices will also continue to provide critical services over the phone.
What does this mean for people in need of applying for Medicare during this time?
While the SSA offices are closed for in-person service there are still options for you to enroll in your Medicare coverage needs. People needing to apply for Medicare generally fall into one of three enrollment situations and below are instructions for each of those situations.
1. Turning Age 65 and currently drawing Social Security Benefits
If a person is aging into Medicare and is currently drawing Social Security benefits they will be automatically enrolled in Medicare. Medicare beneficiaries in this category will generally receive their Medicare ID card by mail approximately 90 days prior to their Medicare effective date.
2. Turning Age 65 and NOT currently drawing Social Security Benefits
If a person is aging in to Medicare and getting Part A and Part B at the same time they can continue to enroll online at www.socialsecurity.gov. Medicare beneficiaries could also use the mail in option outlined below but applying online will generally be faster and will allow you to view the status of your enrollment online.
3. Over Age 65 and applying for Medicare Part B (already enrolled in Part A and adding Part B)
This situation is generally for those people that have worked for employer (with employer health insurance) beyond age 65 and are now losing employer sponsored insurance.
- We suggest you call your LOCAL social security office. Use this website: https://www.ssa.gov/locator/
- If the number listed here is not correct, you can also do a Google search for the local office.
- Do not call the national SSA office. This will be done quicker at the local office.
- They will provide you with the proper location for mailing the forms listed below.
- They can go to SSA.GOV and print the documents needed:
- Application for Enrollment in Medicare Part B – Form 40B
- If you are losing employer coverage, you also need to fill out:
- Request for Employment Information Medicare – Form L564
- You will need to complete both forms, and may need assistance from your Human Resources department to complete employer coverage verification form.
- Social Security representatives will be available to process these applications when received by mail.
- Once processed it will be loaded in their system and you will be able to view the Part B effective date on their Medicare.gov account.
- If they do not have a Medicare.gov account they can register for one on the myMedicare Website.
- Social Security will mail you a confirmation letter stating the Medicare Part B effective date if the application is approved.
- A Medicare ID card will also be sent after approval.
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