Working past age 65…Do I need to sign up for Medicare Part B?

Working past age 65 is very common nowadays. We are asked daily, “Do I have to sign up for Medicare?”  There is a lot of confusion and  some misconceptions around signing up for Medicare Part B. Many of our clients have been advised that they must sign up for Medicare Part B, when they turn 65, or they will be subject to penalties for the rest of their life.  You might have even been told that you won’t be able to enroll in Medicare Part B at all.

However, that’s not always true.  Medicare guidelines allow for several Special Enrollment Periods.  One of these Special Enrollment Periods grants you the right to enroll in Medicare Part B when you retire or quit working after the age of 65.  Remember, you must have been insured continuously on the employer health plan.

Here are a few things to consider:

  • You will receive an 8-month window to enroll in Medicare Part B once you retire or quit – You can also enroll in Medicare Part B anytime while employed and enrolled on the employer plan.
  • Waiting to enroll in Medicare Part B at the end of your Cobra or not signing up due to taking retiree benefits will not grant you a Special Enrollment Period once you go past the initial 8-month window.
  • You can sign up for your Medicare Part B online through Social Security at
  • You must supply Social Security with the Medicare Employer Notice. This notice is the proof that Social Security needs from your employer that you were continuously covered on the employer group Plan. This form will need to be mailed or taken to your local Social Security office.

We recommend that you begin your enrollment process 60 days prior to the date you plan to retire or prior to the end of the 8-month window. Please reach out to us if we can help you understand and navigate your Medicare Insurance in Washington.

Working Past Age 65 and Not Signing Up For Medicare – What You Need To Know

If you elected to remain insured on your employers health insurance plan and did not sign up for Medicare Part B, here are a couple of questions to ask your employer to avoid any coverage mistakes for your future.

  • Ask if the employer plan has a Medicare Carve Out.
    • Depending on the size of the employer, you may be required to apply for your Medicare Part B so you have medical coverage.
  • Ask if the employer plan has Medicare Creditable Prescription Drug Coverage.
    • If it does not, you will want to sign up for a Medicare Prescription Drug Plan so you will not have any penalties in the future. This is necessary if you have Medicare Part A and/or Medicare Part B.

Baker Insurance Group can help you navigate your Medicare insurance options. We are licensed across Washington and will help you find the right plan for your situation.

Protect Yourself From Medicare Fraud

Medicare scams are rampant. With millions of people on Medicare, it is a growing commonplace for identity theft and fraud. Follow these steps to protect yourself:

  1. Review all of your bills and look for claim errors or other specious activity on your statements.
  2. Be suspicious of doctors, healthcare providers or suppliers if they tell you their service is free, they know how to get Medicare to pay or that the more tests provided, the cheaper it becomes.
  3. Be suspicious of doctors that do not charge copay upon check-in, or if they bill for services you do not get.

Protect yourself from identity theft by never giving out your information to someone who calls you out of the blue. Never give out your entire social security number, bank account information or credit card information over the phone.

Report plans that don’t follow the rules
If you think a plan isn’t following these rules, you can:
■ Call 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users should
call 1-877-486-2048.
■ Contact your State Health Insurance Assistance Program
(SHIP). To get the phone number for your state, visit, or call 1-800-MEDICARE.