In this digital age, it’s now easier than ever to pay your Medicare bills. There’s no reason to forget to send your checks out or to have to go to the post office to buy stamps anymore. Paying your bills can be as easy as clicking a button!
We’re available to answer all your burning questions about who has to pay what for Medicare, how to pay your Medicare bills, and more.
Do I Have to Pay for Medicare?
We get this question a lot, and we understand why you may be confused or upset. If you were employed for any extended period of time in your life, you’re probably thinking, “I already paid for Medicare through taxes!” It’s true that most people paid Medicare taxes during their working careers, but there are still some costs involved in Medicare for most people.
Those Medicare taxes that you paid all those years certainly helped fund the Medicare program, but it’s not enough. Healthcare is expensive!
Medicare parts A and B are different. If you worked for at least 39 quarters, you may not have to pay a premium for Part A at all. However, anyone who does not qualify for financial assistance will owe a premium for Part B. The Part B premium can change based on income, but the standard in 2019 is $135.50/month.
- If you worked over 39 quarters (about ten years), your Part A premium will be $0
- If you worked 30-39 quarters, your Part A premium will be $240 in 2019
- IF you worked for less than 30 quarters, your Part A premium will be $437 in 2019.
Medicare Premiums Deducted From Social Security Payments
If you have low income and receive Social Security assistance, you may receive premium-free Medicare.
Depending on your income, some people with Social Security benefits may still have to pay for Medicare. However, you can have your Medicare payments automatically deducted from your Social Security benefits.
You will receive a bill in the mail for your Medicare payments, unless one of the following applies to you:
- If you receive Social Security benefits, your payments may be automatically deducted from your benefits.
- If you receive Railroad Retirement benefits, your payments may be automatically deducted from your benefits.
- If you retire from civil services, your payments may be automatically deducted from your annuities
Once you receive your bill, there are a few ways you can pay it. You can pay directly through your bank (set this up through your bank), you can send in a check or money order, you can pay by debit or credit card by filling in the card information on your bill slip and mailing it back in, or you can sign up for Medicare Easy Pay, a free service which will automatically deduct the premium from your bank account.
Keep in mind that aside from your premiums, you may still have to pay copayments when you visit a doctor or other provider.
If your payments are automatically deducted from your benefits or if you’re signed up for Easy Pay, you will receive a statement in the mail. The statement and will say “This is not a bill,” somewhere on it. That is just a statement telling you what was taken from your account, and you will not have to send in money. Don’t let this confuse you, you don’t want to pay twice!
How to Get More Money From Social Security Disability
Some Medicare Advantage carriers actually offer a program that can put more money back in your social security check. Some plans will give you a discount on your Medicare Part B (the part that pays for your doctor visits). You’ll see this discount reflected in your Social Security benefits since less money will be taken out for Medicare.
What Is Medicare Easy Pay?
Medicare Easy Pay automatically deducts your Medicare premium from a designated checking or savings account. You’ll still get a “Medicare Premium Bill” in the mail, but it will say, “This is not a bill.” It will serve as a statement letting you know that your premium has automatically been deducted from your bank account.
If you prefer to not have your Medicare premiums automatically deducted, there are a few other ways you can pay:
- You can sign onto MyMedicare.gov and pay your premiums online with your credit card or debit card.
- If you receive Social Security benefits, you can have your Medicare premiums deducted from your benefits.
- If you prefer to pay by check or credit card, you can return your Medicare bill with a check or credit card number by mail.
Using Medicare Easy Pay will save you time and prevent you from accidentally forgetting to pay your premiums.
How to Set up Medicare Easy Pay
Enrolling in Medicare Easy Pay and paying Medicare online is easy! All you need to do is fill out this Medicare Easy Pay form and submit it to the following address.
It can take up to 6-8 weeks to process, so make sure you continue to pay your bill until your Medicare Easy Pay becomes active.
Once it’s active, you’ll notice that your premium is deducted from your bank account on the 20th of the month. You’ll see it on your bank statement as “Automated Clearing House (ACH).”
Mail your Medicare Easy Pay form to:
Medicare Premium Collection Center
PO Box 979098
St. Louis, MO 63197-9000
How to Cancel Medicare Easy Pay
If you need to change your Medicare Easy Pay bank account, address, or any other information, resubmit your Medicare Easy Pay form but select the “change” option.
If you no longer want to use Medicare Easy Pay for any reason, resubmit your Medicare Easy Pay form but select the “stop” option. Complete all the boxes in the form so that Medicare can locate your information to make changes.
Medicare Advantage Payment
If you have a Medicare Advantage plan, your plan is hosted by a private carrier. That means that instead of paying Medicare directly, you’ll be paying your carrier.
Each carrier hosts their billing differently. You’ll likely need to either send in a check or pay online. Check with your plan details or your carrier website to learn how to make a Medicare Advantage payment. A Medicare Plan Finder licensed agent may be able to help you figure it out.
Part D Payment
Your Part D (prescription drug plan payment) will differ based on the type of prescription drug plan coverage you have.
If you have an MAPD (Medicare Advantage Prescription Drug Plan), your Part D/prescription drug coverage is included in your Medicare Advantage plan and you will most likely only have premium to pay each month. I
f your prescription drug plan is not included in your Medicare Advantage plan, you will have to look into your individual Part D plan to find a billing address to mail checks to or a website to enroll in digital payments.
Medicare Advantage is a way to wrap up your hospital coverage, doctor coverage, prescription drug coverage, and extra coverage (dental, vision, hearing) into one plan with one premium.
Medicare Supplement plans are a way to get coverage for your deductibles, coinsurance, and copayments.
What Happens If I Don’t Pay My Premiums on Time?
If you don’t pay your Part B premiums on time, you could lose coverage. It won’t happen immediately, however.
You have a 90-day grace period after the due date. Once the grace period passes, Medicare will send you a letter letting you know that you have 30 days to pay the bill or you will lose coverage. That makes a total of four months to pay your bill before Medicare will stop paying for covered services.
Private insurance plans (Medigap, Part D, or Medicare Advantage) may treat late payments differently. Check with your plan carrier if you have questions about the policies.
Still Need Help?
If you need help to pay Medicare online, one of our agents may be able to help you set it up! Give us a call and we’ll send a licensed agent your way to help you figure it out and make sure you’re in the best plan for your health and financial needs. Call us at 833-438-3676 or contact us here today.
This post was originally published on October 19, 2017, by Anastasia Iliou. The latest update was completed on October 8, 2019, by Troy Frink.