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Signing Up for Medicare Part A & Part B

  • If you will be receiving benefits from Social Security1, you automatically get Parts A and B. Benefits start the first day of the month you turn age 65. You will get your Medicare card in the mail three months before your 65th birthday or your 25th month of disability.
  • If you are under age 65 and disabled, you will automatically get Part A and Part B after you get disability benefits from Social Security2 for 24 months.
  • If you have ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also called Lou Gehrig’s disease), you automatically get Part A and Part B the month your disability benefits begin.

1Or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). If you worked for a railroad, contact the RRB to sign up.

2Or certain disability benefits from the RRB.
  • If you will NOT be receiving Social Security1 (for instance, because you are still working), you will need to sign up for Part A and Part B. In this case, you should contact Social Security three months before you turn age 65 (during your initial enrollment period1, 2). You can sign up any of three ways:
  • If you don’t sign up for Part A and/or Part B when you are first eligible, you can sign up between January 1 – March 31 each year. Your coverage will begin July 1 and you may have to pay a higher premium for late enrollment.
  • If you have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), you can sign up for Part A and Part B by any method other than online.

1Or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). If you worked for a railroad, contact the RRB to sign up.

2Or certain disability benefits from the RRB.

No problem. You will have the option to decline Part B coverage, and will receive instructions on how to do so when you receive your Medicare card.

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