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Medicare Mistakes To Avoid

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Medicare can be confusing. Get your Medicare choice right the first time by avoiding these common mistakes. 

1) Not Reviewing Your Coverage Yearly – Medicare plans change benefits and coverage yearly. The Annual Enrollment Period is your chance to compare options, so you can make the most out of your Medicare coverage.

2) Just Choosing the Same Plan as Your Spouse or Friend – Choosing your Medicare plan needs to be based on your individual needs.

3) Not Understanding In and Out of Network Coverage – It is important to understand how claims are paid if you see a doctor that is out of network or need care outside of your local area.  

4) Not Claiming All the Benefits You’re Entitled To – Apply for all local, state, federal and manufacturer programs that may reduce your premiums, eliminate the cost of Part B or reduce prescription and healthcare copays.

5) Not Comparing Both Medigap & Medicare Advantage Options – There are two unique options with Medicare and both systems exist for a reason. You should understand how the two systems work, so you can make an informed decision.  

6) Not Signing Up for Medicare When Eligible – Many people delay signing up for Medicare and incur penalties for Part B, Part D or both. Remember to talk to a local broker or Social Security 3 months prior to becoming Medicare eligible to determine if you should sign up for Medicare Part A, Part B or both. Missing deadlines can have permanent penalties.

7) Not Contesting the High-Income Surcharge After Retiring – If you have been assessed an income related Part B or Part D surcharge and your income changes you may be able to contest the premium surcharge and may be able to have it waived.

8) Contributing To an HSA Within 6 Months of Receiving Part A - You can't contribute to a health savings account after you sign up for Medicare Part A and can incur a tax penalty for doing so.

9) Not Seeking Help - Contact an experienced broker to go over your unique situation and avoid these common mistakes.

Editor’s Note: This article was submitted by Jolynn Allen, of AIS Medicare & More. She may be reached at 719-404-3202, or by email at

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Colorado - Colorado Springs