Medicare Advantage Enrollment in California
Medicare Advantage plans are offered by health insurance companies, such as Anthem. You can apply for a Medicare Advantage plan when you first become eligible for Medicare. There are also other times during the year when you can change your Medicare Advantage plan. For the most part, unless you are signing up for Medicare for the first time, Medicare Advantage enrollment periods fall at around the same time each year.
Medicare Advantage Enrollment Period
Whether you’re joining a Medicare Advantage plan for the first time or want to make changes, to an existing Medicare Advantage plan, there are many things to keep in mind. You’ll need to know if you qualify for an enrollment period, when your benefits will start, and what happens if you don’t meet the deadlines.
Medicare Advantage Enrollment Dates to Consider
The table below is written to specifically show you how to switch or apply for Medicare Advantage plans during different Medicare enrollment periods. If you are new to Medicare we also have information about how to enroll in your Medicare Part A and B benefits.
- Begins three months before your 65th birthday.
- Ends three months after your 65th birthday.
- You can also sign up the month of your birthday.
- Those who are turning 65, and “aging in” to Medicare, and who are not already getting Social Security benefits.
- You can enroll in Part A and/or Part B.
- You can also enroll in Medicare Advantage (Part C) during your initial enrollment period, after enrolling in Part A and Part B.
- Your benefits start on the first day of the month you turn 65 if you sign up during the 3 months before your birthday.
- If your birthday is on the first of the month, benefits start the first day of the month before your birthday.
- If you sign up during one of the 3 months after your birthday, your enrollment begins the first day of the following month.
- If you do not sign up for Medicare Advantage during your initial enrollment into Medicare, you will need to sign up during one of the other enrollment periods.
- Each year, from October 15 to December 7.
- Add a Medicare Advantage plan if you currently only have Original Medicare.
- Switch from one Medicare Advantage plan to another type of Medicare Advantage plan.
- Change from a Medicare Advantage plan that doesn’t have Prescription Drug coverage, to one that does.
- Or switch from a Medicare Advantage (Part C) plan that has Prescription Drug coverage to one that doesn’t.
- Enrollment in your new plan begins on January 1 of the following year.
- If you miss open enrollment you will need to wait until the next year to change your Medicare Advantage plan, unless you meet the conditions of another enrollment periods.
- Special time period based on your life experiences.
- Those who have had a life change that qualifies them to switch or join a Medicare Advantage plan.
- These may be related to many different things such as moving out of your plan’s service area, losing employee or other coverage, moving in or out of a nursing home, becoming eligible for Medicaid, or a plan with a 5-star rating becomes available.
- Dates for Special Election Periods vary.
- If you qualify for and miss your Special Enrollment Period you will need to wait for one of the other enrollment periods.
How to enroll in Medicare Advantage
We can help you find the right Medicare Advantage Plan for your lifestyle and budget. We have tools to help you search for plans based on what’s important to you. Answer a few quick questions and we’ll provide a recommendation on the Medicare plan that matches you best. You can compare our HMO, PPO and other plans based on benefits, costs, quality, prescription drug coverage, and doctors. You can save your favorites and come back during one of the enrollment periods to apply.Shop Plans