Am I eligible for Medicare when I start drawing my early retirement benefits?
Unfortunately no. If you retire earlier than age 65, you will not be eligible for Medicare. Although Medicare is often thought of as insurance for retired people, the Medicare age requirement is still 65.
There are some exceptions to that general rule though. You can enroll in Medicare at age 62 IF you meet one of the requirements below:
- You have been on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) for at least 2 years.
- You are on SSDI because you suffer from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease. (The two-year requirement is waived in this case.)
- You suffer from end-stage renal disease.
If you do not meet these requirement, then your Medicare will begin 3 months before your 65th birthday. For example, if you turn 65 on August 6, 2022, the enrollment window opens on May 1.
If you are receiving Social Security benefits, the Social Security Administration will send you a Medicare information as well as your Medicare card at the start of the sign-up period. You’ll be automatically enrolled in Medicare Part A (hospitalization) and Part B (standard health insurance) in the month you turn 65.
In the interim, if you cant get Medicare yet, consider looking for other health insurance options until you are eligible for Medicare. You may qualify for Medicaid if you have very little assets or income. Or maybe you'll want to look into the Affordable Care Act marketplace for coverage in the mean time. Another option is if your spouse is working, maybe you can get on their health insurance plan in the mean time.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact attorney Christopher Le at 210-885-3408.