Whether you qualify for Medicare and haven’t signed up or you’ve already enrolled in the program, the Medicare Open Enrollment period is very important. Unfortunately, many older adults don’t know when it starts, how long it lasts, or what they can do during Open Enrollment. Let’s take a look at the top 5 most common questions about Open Enrollment.

When Does It Begin?

The 2020 Open Enrollment already started. This year, Open Enrollment began on October 15, 2020. The dates typically do not change much from year to year, but it’s always important to confirm the Open Enrollment start date well in advance.

When Does Open Enrollment End?

The 2020 Open Enrollment will end on December 7, 2020. If you wish to enroll or make changes to your Medicare plans, you’ll need to do it before that date. If you miss the deadline, you will probably have to wait until October 2021 for the next Open Enrollment period.

What Changes Can I Make During Open Enrollment?

You can take a number of important actions regarding your Medicare during the Open Enrollment period. Here are some of the most common and important changes that you can make:

Is There a Separate Enrollment Period for Medicare Advantage?

In short, yes. Even though you can make changes related to Medicare Advantage during Open Enrollment, there is a separate enrollment period specifically for older adults who are already enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan. The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment period takes place from January 1 through March 31, 2021. During this period, you can either:

When Do the Open Enrollment Changes Go Into Effect?

Changes made during the 2020 Open Enrollment will officially go into effect on January 1, 2021. So, you may have a coverage gap between the time that you make changes and the start of the new calendar year. If you miss the 2020 Open Enrollment deadline, you will need to wait until the 2021 Open Enrollment to make any changes, in which case they will go into effect on January 1, 2022.

The Bottom Line

The Open Enrollment period provides older adults with a way to make changes to their Medicare coverage every year. This year, Open Enrollment lasts from October 15 to December 7, 2020. If you want to make changes that will go into effect in 2021, you’ll need to take advantage of the current Open Enrollment.

If you’d like to learn more about Open Enrollment or your Medicare coverage options, feel free to fill out this form or give us a call anytime. Time for 65’s partnered licensed agents are focused on giving you the information you need, with zero pressure to enroll in a plan.