New To Medicare

Key Points

You sign up for Medicare Part A and Part B through Social Security, while other parts and plans are purchased through private insurance carriers.


If you have other creditable coverage, such as large employer insurance, you may be able to delay Medicare past 65 without penalty.


Most people enroll in Medicare during their 7-month Initial Enrollment period, which takes place around their 65th birthday.

Feeling overwhelmed, perplexed and frustrated? Don't fret. We'll simplify medicare.

People who are new to Medicare struggle to make sense of all these parts and plans with similar letters, making it challenging to grasp what’s what and why it’s crucial to let an independent agency decipher and decode the medicare maze laden with penalties, enrollment deadlines, and changing rules and laws.

Getting swamped with medicare mail, TV commercials, and endless cold calls sending you mixed messages is bewildering for most seniors.

I’ve had local clients bring in stacks of medicare mail, much of which looks official as if the government sent it. They ask us to sift through it to determine what to keep and what to dump into the trash basket, because of all the scams seniors fall to prey to.

Get the Checklist

Want easy Medicare? We’ve put together a New to Medicare checklist and a 6-Day Email Mini-course for people who will have Medicare as primary insurance. It includes a bonus cost worksheet for you to calculate your costs for Medicare for both medicare advantage and medicare with a supplement and drug plan. You can register for that here, right here on this page.

We’ll send you 6 email lessons with short videos that explain all the basics including

 Common New to Medicare Questions

We get thousands of questions from new Medicare beneficiaries every year. Here are some of the most common questions:

What age does Medicare start?

At age 65, you are eligible for Medicare, regardless of whether you are already taking Social Security income benefits. Some people also qualify for Medicare earlier than 65 due to a disability or illness.

Is it mandatory to go on Medicare when you turn 65?

No, but there are significant penalties for late enrollment unless you have other creditable medical coverage, such as from a large employer.

How to get a new Medicare card?

You can print a copy of your Medicare card by logging into your Medicare account. However, if your card is lost or stolen and you need a new Medicare number or your name changed on the card, you can request a new card through your SSA account.

How do I get Medicare?

Social Security offers you a quick online application for Medicare that can be completed in fewer than ten minutes. You do not have to be receiving income benefits to get Medicare. Just visit the Social Security website and follow the links about applying for Medicare.

How do I know when I should sign up?

For most people, your Initial Enrollment Period (It’s a 7-month window in which you should enroll in Part A and Part B to avoid late enrollment penalties) is the best time to sign up for Medicare.

You can determine your exact Initial Enrollment Period dates using our IEP Calculator here.

How much does Medicare cost?

Medicare Part A can be $0 per month for most people, but Part B has a base premium of $164.90.10 in 2023.

What resources exist to help you navigate Medicare?

Medicare is a complex and beneficial program, and a variety of trusted sources can help you navigate your rights and options. A few are listed here:

May River Medicare- Get an independent medicare advocate to partner up with you for life.

If you are feeling bewildered about Medicare, there is no need to navigate this maze alone. Our upbeat, knowledgeable, agents educate and arm you with the facts, walking you through this process step by step. We begin by teaching you the basics of Original Medicare coverage and then transition into the only two paths you can go down. We ask the right questions to gather the information that helps us determine which of the two paths to go down.

Asking the right questions and listening is the key to deciding which kind of supplemental coverage works best for you when you are new to Medicare.

Once your policy is in place, you will also have the peace of mind that comes from knowing that we are just a phone call away when you need help with your policy. Best of all – our service is free! Find out how secure and confident you feel to have May River Medicare on your side. Call (843) 227-6725.

May River Medicare Advocates – Get a medicare advocate on your side for life.

If you are feeling bewildered about Medicare, there is no need to go through this on your own. Our friendly, knowledgeable, no-hassle agents can walk you through this process step by step. We start by teaching you the basics so that you understand your Original Medicare coverage.

That’s the key to deciding which kind of supplemental coverage works best for you when you are new to Medicare.

Getting Medicare Coverage Before You get Your Full Social Security Benefits

CENTERS FOR MEDICARE AND MEDICAID SERVICES

Getting Medicare before you get your full Social Security Retirement Benefits

In the past people generally got both Social security retirement benefits and Medicare coverage starting at the age of 65. The eligibility age to get Medicare has not changed. However, the age to get full Social Security Retirement Benefits (called “Your Fully Retirement Age”) has changed for some people. 

It now depends on the year you were born, and some people do not get full retirement benefits before the age of 67. 

To learn when you will reach your fully retirement age and how that affects your Social Security Retirement Benefits until age 67. 

To find out when you will reach your full retirement age and how that affects your Social Security retirement benefits, visit www.socialsecurity.gov on the web. You can also call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213. TTY users should call 1-800-325-0778.

Will I be contacted about enrolling in Medicare Part A, Part B and Part D?

If you are already getting social security retirement benefits before you turn age 65 you will automatically get Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance). You will receive a Medicare Initial Enrollment Period package 3 months before your 65th birthday. 

If you aren’t eligible for full Social Security Retirement Benefits at age 65, and you aren’t getting Social Security Benefits, you can still get your full Medicare Benefits (including Premium free Part A) at age 65, but you must contact Social Security to sign up.

See video on enrolling in Medicare when NOT getting Social Security Benefits Here.