Do you ever think about swapping your Medicare Advantage plan? I don’t mean exchanging it for another Advantage plan. Dropping Medicare Advantage and returning to original Medicare and picking up a Medigap policy to supplement your out of pocket.
For some folks, swapping your Medicare Advantage plan for a Medigap is easy. If your Advantage plan is pulling out of your area, like many Georgia plans are, you get a free pass to return to original Medicare and a Medicare supplement plan.
When your Advantage plan leaves an area this is a qualifying event
You may also have a trial right option.
If this is your first time in a Medicare Advantage plan, and you find out the plan is not performing as expected, you can exchange your Medicare Advantage plan for a Medigap plan as long as you do so within your first year.
But you are still not out of options.
If you move out of your Advantage plan service area, that is a qualifying event which gives you a guaranteed right to purchase Medigap coverage without providing evidence of insurability. Swapping your Medicare Advantage plan for a Medigap policy is simple in this event.
Many people believe the only time for swapping your Medicare Advantage plan is during open enrollment.
This is not true.
You have a right to change your Advantage plan at any time during the year if you are in good health or if you have a qualifying event.
Why would you want to drop your Advantage plan and buy a Medigap policy?
Al is disabled and has been on a Medicare Advantage plan for several years. Back in the spring he turned 65 and did not know his birthday was a qualifying event. He thought he could just keep the plan he had and continue on like before.
No one told Al his 65th birthday meant an opportunity for swapping his Medicare Advantage plan for a Medicare supplement plan.
Al lives near Gainesville, Georgia and a few weeks ago he got a letter advising him that the North Georgia Medical Center would no longer participate in the AARP United Health Care Medicare Advantage plan. If Al was going to keep his Advantage plan he would have to use another hospital unless he was willing to pay the out of network penalties.
That means his out of pocket maximum would increase from $3500 to ?????? if he were admitted to North Georgia Medical.
Al wants is thinking about swapping his Medicare Advantage plan for original Medicare and a Medigap plan. The problem is, he is outside of his IEP (Initial Enrollment Period) window and will have to go through medical underwriting.
His medical history means he will not be accepted under Medicare supplement underwriting rules. His only option is to move to another Advantage plan, or keep what he has and hope he doesn’t have to go to the local hospital.
We have some of the lowest Medigap rates in Georgia and can help you find a plan that fits your needs and budget. Click here to compare your existing Medicare supplement rates and learn how much you can save.