No, you don’t qualify for Medicare until you’re 65 years old (Medicare Eligibility Age) unless you’re disabled, as explained below. Medicare health coverage begins at the age of 65 for the majority of people.
However, there is some good news for you: when one spouse reaches the age of 62, the other spouse who is “Medicare age” may be eligible for premium-free Medicare Part A, even if he or she has never worked. There will be more on this later.
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How old do you have to be to get Medicare?
Do you want to know when you can start receiving Medicare benefits? For most people in the United States, Medicare coverage begins at age 65 or older and continues for the rest of their lives. You can get Medicare before you turn 65 if you qualify for it due to a handicap.
If you’re under the age of 65 and meet the following criteria, you may be eligible for Medicare.
For at least 24 months, you’ve been receiving Social Security disability benefits. When you turn 25, you’re usually automatically enrolled in Medicare.
You have kidney disease that has progressed to the final stage (ESRD). You may be eligible for Medicare, but you are not immediately enrolled. You should contact Social Security or go to their website, www.socialsecurity.gov.
If my spouse is 65 and I’m 62, how can that affect my spouse’s Medicare costs?
Part A and Part B are referred to as traditional Medicare (also known as Original Medicare). Almost everyone is required to pay a monthly Part B premium. However, most people are exempt from paying a monthly Part A fee.
The amount of your monthly Medicare Part A premium is determined by how long you or your spouse worked and paid taxes.
You don’t have to pay a monthly fee for your Medicare Part A (hospital insurance) health coverage if you’ve worked for at least 10 years (40 quarters) while paying Medicare taxes. However, if you haven’t worked in over ten years or haven’t worked in over ten years, you may have to pay a higher premium.
Here’s where your spouse, or vice versa, could profit from your employment background. Let’s say you’re 62 or older and your partner is 65. Your spouse who is eligible for Medicare has worked for fewer than ten years. You, on the other hand, aren’t eligible for Medicare until you’re 62 years old, but you’ve worked for at least ten years and paid taxes.
Tell your partner that you owe him or her a night out on the town. Your spouse will be eligible for premium-free Part A due to your job history.
So, to summarize with an example:
Bob is a 65-year-old man. He’s on Medicare, but his Medicare Part A benefits come with a monthly cost. He worked for only seven years and is now unemployed.
Mary, his wife, has been employed for almost 30 years.
Mary has reached the age of 62. Bob is no longer required to pay a monthly Medicare Part A premium.
Mary will not be eligible for Medicare until she reaches the age of 65. (unless she qualifies by disability).
Will I get Medicare at 62 if I retire then?
No. Even if your spouse qualifies for Medicare when you retire at 62 (or any age younger than 65), you won’t be unless you meet the disability requirements.
If you retire before the age of 65, you may be able to keep your employer’s medical insurance or obtain coverage from a private life and health insurance provider until you reach 65.
Medicare eligibility age questions
Here are answers to some questions you may have about Medicare enrollment.
Will I be enrolled in Medicare automatically?
If you meet the following criteria, you will be immediately enrolled in Medicare.
When you reach the age of 65, you begin collecting social security retirement benefits payments.
You’re under the age of 65 and have received Social Security disability benefits for the past 24 months. In most cases, you’ll be enrolled in Medicare after the 25th month of receiving these benefits.
You have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and are under the age of 65. The month your Social Security disability benefits begin, you’re automatically enrolled in Medicare.
In most cases, you’ll have to sign up for Medicare on your own if:
When you turn 65, you are not yet collecting Social Security retirement benefits.
You’re under the age of 65 and suffer from end-stage renal disease, which is a form of kidney failure. You may be eligible for Medicare at any age, but you are not automatically enrolled.
You are a resident of Puerto Rico. When you turn 65, you may be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A, but you must enroll in Part B.
If you don’t sign up for Medicare when you’re first eligible, you may be charged a late enrollment penalty. Learn more about the consequences of late enrollment.
Does the eligibility age change for types of Medicare coverage?
No. If you want to enroll in a Medicare advantage plan or Medicare Supplement insurance plan, you must have Medicare Parts A and B. You’ll need Part A and/or Part B if you sign up for a stand-alone Medicare prescription drug plan.
So, unless you qualify for a Medicare Advantage plan due to disability, you won’t be able to get one if you’re under 65.
Can I enroll earlier in Medicare if I am a widow or widower?
No. Your Medicare eligibility doesn’t change if your spouse passes away.
If I enroll earlier than age 65, is my Medicare coverage reduced?
You don’t have to be concerned about this because you can’t enroll in Medicare until you’ve reached the age of eligibility.
If you are disabled and qualify for Medicare before the age of 65, you must:
You are eligible for full Original Medicare (Parts A and B).
Some jurisdictions allow you to purchase a Medicare Supplement insurance plan (a private plan that works alongside your Original Medicare coverage), while others do not. If you’re disabled and under 65, check with your state’s State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) office to see if you qualify for a Medicare Supplement insurance plan.
Are there plans to reduce the Medicare enrollment age?
Measures to decrease the Medicare qualifying age have been proposed by several legislators. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) has introduced legislation that would make Medicare available to all Americans in 2019. In 2021, Representative Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) introduced a similar bill. Neither bill was approved.
The Medicare qualifying age had not changed at the time this article was written.
How do I get full Medicare benefits?
As soon as you become eligible for Medicare, you are entitled to full Part A and Part B benefits. Original Medicare is divided into two parts: Part A and Part B.
So, how do you enroll in Medicare? As previously stated, you are often automatically enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B.
What happens if you’re Medicare-eligible but haven’t yet received Social Security benefits? In such a situation, you’ll have to enroll in Medicare on your own – it won’t happen automatically.
If you’re looking for benefits other than those provided by Original Medicare, you might want to look into:
Medicare Supplemental Insurance (Medicare Advantage/Medicare Part C). Medicare advantage is a different way to acquire your Medicare Part A and Part B coverage, but it generally comes with additional advantages, such as prescription medication coverage.
Supplemental health insurance coverage for Medicare recipients. Private life and health insurance companies provide this service. It works in conjunction with your Medicare Parts A and B coverage.
Prescription drug coverage is sold separately from Medicare Part D. These plans may be able to help you pay for your prescription medications.
Enter your zip code on this page to discover more about your Medicare coverage options, or call Abbys Consulting (health insurance broker)to talk with a professional insurance adviser.
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All items are subject to applicable laws, rules, and regulations and are not available in all places.
Can I get Medicare at age 62?
In general, the answer is no. At the age of 62, you can only enroll in Medicare if you match one of the following criteria: For at least two years, you’ve been receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI). Because you have amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, you are on SSDI.
What is the earliest age you can qualify for Medicare?
If you’ve received Social Security or Railroad Retirement Benefits for at least 4 months previous to your 65th birthday, Medicare will begin immediately when you turn 65. If you get benefit checks, you’ll be automatically enrolled in both Medicare Part A and Part B when you turn 65.
Three months before you turn 65, you are a Medicare eligible to enroll in Medicare. If you have a handicap, stage renal disease ESRD, or ALS (commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease), you may be eligible for Medicare sooner.
During the Open Enrollment Annual Election Period, which runs from October 15th to December 7th, the ideal (and frequently only) time to transfer from Medigap to Medicare Advantage plan is. To make the move during this time, you’d have to enroll in Medicare advantage plan, which can only begin on January 1st of the next year.
If you never worked, you can still get Medicare, but it will be more expensive. You will have to pay a monthly premium for Part A unless you have worked and paid Medicare taxes for 10 years — sometimes known as 40 quarters. This may vary based on your spouse and whether or not you worked previously.
Yes. If you are receiving benefits, the Social Security Administration will automatically enroll you in Medicare Parts A and B at the age of 65 if you are eligible. (The government Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services runs Medicare, but Social Security manages enrollment.)
If you are 65 or older and have worked and did pay medicare taxes for at least 10 years, you are eligible for premium-free Part A. If you are receiving retirement from Social Security benefits, you can access Part A without you pay premiums at age 65.
Medicare is generally provided to persons 65 and over, as well as younger people with impairments and those with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or transplant). Part A (Hospital Insurance) and Part B (Medicare Supplement Insurance) are the two portions of Medicare (Medicare Insurance).
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65 years old or older
Medicare is generally provided to persons 65 and over, as well as younger people with impairments and those with End-Stage Renal Disease (permanent kidney failure requiring dialysis or transplant). Part A and Part B (Medicare Supplement Insurance) are the two portions of Medicare (Medicare Insurance).
The retirement age will remain at 66 until 2017 when it will rise by two months every two years until it reaches 67 in 2022. Both the usual retirement age and the Medicare eligibility age have been proposed to be raised in several proposals.
The Medicare qualifying age will not change overnight, regardless of the outcome. The US federal government’s budget for the Fiscal Year 2022 does not include lowering the eligibility age. As a result, the Medicare eligibility age will not be lowered in the coming year.
Depending on the policy, you may be able to extend health coverage to your spouse and children. As opposed to this, Medicare is a form of private insurance. The vast majority of Medicare beneficiaries are either elderly or disabled and must prove their eligibility on their own.
You have a seven-month window in which you can enroll in Medicare Advantage. This window begins when you first become eligible for Medicare and ends when you do not qualify for Medicare (either your 65th birth month or the 25th month you have collected disability benefits).