Workers retiring at age 65 are eligible for Medicare Part B (which covers outpatient services) and must sign up the month they turn 65 or during the three months before or after. Some employees choose to continue working and remain with their employer’s health coverage. That is fine as long as the employee or his or her spouse works at a job (with 20 or more employees) that provides health benefits because Medicare provides secondarily to their employer’s group plan. Once the employee stops working, it’s important to enroll in Part B within eight months after the month of retirement. Failure to enroll during this “special enrollment period” can result in being uninsured if the employer’s coverage expires.
NOTE: Failure to sign up during the “special enrollment period” results in a permanent 10% premium surcharge for every year that the unsigned enrollee should have been on Medicare but was not.