Medicare Medigap Plans

admin | October 15, 2013

A Medigap policy is health insurance sold by private insurance companies to fill the “gaps” in Original Medicare Plan coverage. These “gaps” are the health care costs that the Original Medicare Plan covers, but doesn't pay for. If you are in the Original Medicare Plan and have a Medigap policy, then Medicare and your Medigap policy will each pay its share of covered health care costs.

Generally, when you buy a Medigap policy you must have Medicare Part A and Part B. You will have to continue to pay the monthly Medicare Part B premium. In addition, you will have to pay a premium to the Medigap insurance company. As long as you pay your premium, your Medigap policy is guaranteed renewable, meaning that it is automatically renewed each year. However, if a Medigap policy was purchased before 1992, insurance companies in some states may refuse to renew it.

Medigap policies must follow Federal and state laws. Therefore, insurance companies can only sell you a “standardized” Medigap policy. These laws protect you. The Medigap policy must clearly identify it as “Medicare Supplement Insurance.”

It's important to compare Medigap policies, because costs can vary. The standardized Medigap policies that insurance companies offer must provide the same benefits, but not the same premiums.

You and your spouse must buy separate Medigap policies. Your Medigap policy won't cover any health care costs for anyone other than the one policyholder. 

Some Medigap policies also cover other extra benefits that aren't covered by Medicare.

You are guaranteed the right to buy a Medigap policy under certain circumstances.

For more information on cost and coverage options contact a Medicare specialist at  Minnesota Health Insurance Network to assist you in determining if a Medicare Medigap Plan is the right plan for you.