Medicare Enrollment

Timely Medicare Enrollment is Important 

Enrollment for Medicare begins 3 months prior to your 65th birthday and ends 3 months after your birthday.

Why is it important?

Once you or your dependent are eligible for Medicare, your benefits under the UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust (also referred to as “the Trust”) will be paid as if you have Medicare coverage, whether or not you are enrolled. Enrolling in Part A and Part B will allow you to avoid paying additional out-of-pocket medical expenses. The Trust will not pay amounts that Medicare would have paid. You will be responsible for paying these amounts.

If you enroll in Part A and/or B the month you turn 65 or during the last three months of your initial Enrollment Period, the start date for your Medicare coverage will be delayed.

Surviving Spouses age 65 or older must enroll in both Medicare Part A and Part B in order to be eligible for health care coverage provided by the Trust. In the event of the retiree’s death, the surviving spouse will not be eligible for coverage unless he or she is enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B, if eligible.


Penalty for Failure to Timely Enroll in Medicare

It is important for both you and your Dependents to enroll in Medicare when first eligible. Medicare Part B requires a monthly premium. The cost of the Medicare Part B premium will go up 10% for each full 12-month period an individual was eligible for Medicare Part B during the initial enrollment period but did not enroll. If you did not enroll when first eligible, and later choose to enroll, you must wait until the next Medicare Part B open enrollment period, which is January 1 through March 31 of each year. Your Medicare Part B will be effective on July 1 of the year you enroll.

Mandatory Medicare Enrollment for Surviving Spouses/Surviving Same-Sex Domestic Partners
An eligible Surviving Spouse or Surviving Same-Sex Domestic Partner who turns age 65 must enroll in Medicare Part B when first eligible. If your Spouse or Same-Sex Domestic Partner is age 65 or older, and does not have Medicare Part B when you die, he or she will not be eligible for coverage under the Plans. When the Spouse or Same-Sex Domestic Partner provides evidence of enrollment in Medicare Part B, coverage will be available subject to the applicable monthly health care contributions.


How do I enroll in Medicare?

This depends on your situation:

  • If you or your dependent are currently receiving Social Security Benefits and not enrolled in Part A or Part B, enrollment is automatic.
  • If you or your dependent are not receiving Social Security Benefits and not enrolled in Medicare, contact your local Social Security Administration (SSA) office at 800-772-1213. SSA can assist with enrollment and Medicare questions.
  • If you or your dependent are already enrolled in Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B, you do not have to do anything further at this time.
  • If you or your dependent do not receive your Medicare Red, White and Blue card showing your enrollment in both Medicare Parts A and B three months prior to your 65th birthday, you should contact Social Security to ensure you are properly enrolled in both Parts A and B.
  • If you are becoming Medicare eligible due to disability and you receive your Medicare Red, White and Blue card showing Medicare Part A only, you should contact Social Security to ensure you are properly enrolled in both Parts A and B when first eligible.


Once I become eligible for Medicare will my health care plan change?

Effective January 1, 2018, Medicare Advantage (MA) PPO plans are the primary plan for Medicare members. This means as members enrolled in the Traditional Care Network become Medicare eligible, the Trust will automatically enroll them into a Medicare Advantage PPO plan on January 1, following the year in which they become Medicare enrolled unless they:

  • Contact Retiree Health Care Connect (RHCC) at 866-637-7555 to remain in their current plan or choose another available option.
  • Enroll in another (such as an individual) MA plan.
  • Fail to meet criteria for auto enrollment.

If you are enrolled in an HMO plan, you may be automatically enrolled in the Medicare Advantage portion of the HMO plan. However, since enrollment rules vary by health plan, you should contact Retiree Health Care Connect at 866-637-7555 to understand and discuss the options available to you.

Please note: The Traditional Care Network (TCN) plan continues to remain an option for all of our members. When you become Medicare eligible, if you choose to remain in TCN, you just need to contact Retiree Health Care Connect (RHCC) at 866-637-7555.

Resources

Medicare Enrollment Social Security Administration www.ssa.gov
800-772-1213
Locate your nearest office
Medicare Information The Official U.S. Government Site for Medicare www.medicare.gov
Download Medicare.gov's official government handbook
Trust Health Plan Eligibility and Options Retiree Health Care Connect (RHCC) www.resources.hewitt.com/rhcc
866-637-7555