With the new changes to the enrollment procedures to apply for your Medicare benefits, you can no longer simply go to www.Medicare.gov and enroll.

You must first go to www.SSA.gov and create a personal account online with account name and password. You will need to do this in order to do online enrollment in Medicare A&B. When creating your account, be sure to pay attention to select ‘apply for Medicare only’. Sometimes, folks make a mistake and select Social Security benefit enrollment as well as Medicare enrollment. This misstep will cause you to start receiving your Social Security benefit check as well as your Medicare.

Remember, Medicare benefits start at age 65 and full retirement Social Security benefits start at age 66.

Once enrolled, we will assist you in selecting your Medicare plans. Medicare and Social Security staff will help you sign up for your Medicare A&B or your Social Security benefit check. They will not assist you in selecting a medical or drug plan.

What do you need to do? There are three (3) options on how to sign up for Medicare A&B.

1) Go to www.medicare.gov or www.SSA.gov and create your personal account.
A) When you get to the page, find the “apply online selection”.
B) Select “Apply for Medicare Only”
C) There will be a Statement of Understanding, click -agree.
D) Then select “Start New Application”.
E) Select “Are you applying for yourself”.
F) This will take you to “Sign in to SSA.gov”, sign in if you already have created a password and account. This will then take you back to a Medicare application.
G) If you have not already created a Social Security account, select “Create account”.
H) When you’ve completed the Social Security Account application, you will then need to go back to www.Medicare.gov and fill out your Medicare application
I) When creating your SSA.gov account, be prepared to answer questions of a personal nature, such as; What bank has your current house or car loan? Which Credit Card company do you use? The point is that these questions are specific to information that only you could, or should, know how to answer. This is an attempt to protect you against any fraud attempt.

2) Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 and ask for an appointment. At your appointment, Social Security staff will assist you in enrollment for Social Security benefits or in Medicare A&B. If you choose to enroll in Medicare A&B, remember to ask for an “Application Summary” at your appointment, as proof of your enrollment.

3) You can always just go to your local Social Security office and walk in for assistance to complete any of these enrollment tasks. There are several offices in the greater Phoenix, Maricopa County area.
After you have created your account with Social Security and/or enrolled in Medicare A&B, your Medicare card will arrive in 2-3 weeks. Be careful not to throw away the envelope it arrives in; since you are turning 65, many insurance carriers will be mailing you information about their versions of Medicare plans for you to consider. Amongst this “junk mail” will be your Medicare card envelope. Open all mail to ensure your Medicare card is not inside before tossing mail away.

Also, if you are already receiving your Social Security benefit checks (for example, SSI, SSA, or Widow/Widower Benefits), your enrollment in Medicare A&B is still automatic. Your card will arrive three to four months before your birthday. Again, check all mail and don’t accidentally toss your card in the trash.

As always, we will be happy to assist you in your efforts to get educated about all Medicare plans and options available to you in your geographic area.