If you have health problems, your best bet to get Medigap Insurance is to apply during open enrollment. During those six months, your application for Medigap coverage cannot be denied and you cannot be charged higher rates based on your health.
Medicare Supplement insurance open enrollment begins on the first day of the month in which you are at least 65 and you are enrolled in Medicare Part B. Open enrollment typically only lasts for six months, although certain states may have additional open enrollment periods that include people who are under 65 and disabled.
If you live in New York State, you don’t have to worry about open enrollment. All Medigap Plans are guaranteed-issue regardless of your health problems. That means you are always guaranteed the right to a Medigap Plan no matter what health problems you currently have or have had in the past.
If you live in another state and you miss open enrollment, you may still be able to get a Medigap plan in spite of pre-existing health problems. AARP has partnered with United Healthcare to offer all 10 Medigap Plans and a SELECT Plan C. (Select Plans typically offer lower premiums in exchange for limiting which doctors and hospitals you may use for non-emergency and non-urgent care.)
The only medical question considered when you apply for an AARP/United Healthcare Medigap Plan outside of a guaranteed-issue period concerns end-stage renal disease. Other pre-existing conditions will not affect your right to get one of these Medigap Plans. Get the facts before you give up on Medigap. For professional advice, call us at 866-323-1441.
Wiley Long is founder and president of Medigap Advisors, and is passionate about helping people navigate the confusing waters of Medicare. He is the author of The Medicare Playbook: Designing Your Successful Health Coverage Strategy, a clear and simple explanation so you can make the most of your Medicare coverage. For more information visit www.MediGapAdvisors.com.