Medicare Special Enrollment Period
Medicare Special Enrollment Periods (SEPs) are periods outside of the regular enrollment periods during which eligible individuals can enroll in or make changes to their Medicare coverage. SEPs are designed to provide flexibility and additional opportunities for individuals to enroll in or change their Medicare coverage due to certain life events or circumstances.
Here are some of the most common SEPs:
- Initial Enrollment Period (IEP): The IEP is a seven-month period that begins three months before the month of an individual's 65th birthday, includes the month of their 65th birthday, and ends three months after that month. This is the initial opportunity for individuals to enroll in Medicare.
- Annual Enrollment Period (AEP): The AEP is the regular enrollment period that takes place every year from October 15th to December 7th. During this period, individuals can make changes to their Medicare Advantage or Part D coverage.
- Special Enrollment Period (SEP): The SEP is a period during which individuals can enroll in or make changes to their Medicare coverage due to certain life events or circumstances, such as moving to a new area, losing employer-sponsored health coverage, or qualifying for Medicaid.
- Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period (OEP): The OEP takes place from January 1st to March 31st each year, during which individuals enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan can switch to another Medicare Advantage plan or return to Original Medicare.
- 5-Star Special Enrollment Period: This SEP allows individuals to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan with a 5-star rating at any time during the year.
It's important to note that not all SEPs apply to all Medicare beneficiaries, and eligibility requirements may vary. If you have questions about Medicare enrollment or eligibility for a Special Enrollment Period, it's always a good idea to speak with a licensed Medicare agent or the Medicare program directly.