To enroll in Original Medicare, meaning Medicare Part A and B, you can apply online during your enrollment period, a general enrollment period or a special enrollment period.
Your specific enrollment period is between three months before you turn 65 years of age and three months after you turn 65 years of age. During this time, you can choose to apply for Original Medicare by applying for both Medicare Part A and B.
You can also choose to apply for just Medicare Part A, as Medicare Part B comes with a monthly premium that needs to be paid by the user.
However, keep in mind that if you decide to apply for Medicare Part B after your initial enrollment period, your Part B premium will increase by ten percent every 12 months you do not apply for Medicare Part B but are eligible to receive it.
If you do not apply for Original Medicare during your initial enrollment period, you can still enroll in the program by applying during the general enrollment period. The general enrollment period is usually between January 1st and March 31st.
The final enrollment period is called the special enrollment period and refers to those who have health insurance through work or their spouse past the age of 65 and do not need to apply for Medicare coverage even if they are at an eligible age.
Special enrollment periods are open up to 8 months after group or employment coverage ends for individuals over 65 years of age.
Regardless of which enrollment period you decide to apply through, if your application is approved, your Medicare coverage will begin on July 1st of the year you applied.