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Medicare Facts You Need to Know for Railroad Retirement Thumbnail

Medicare Facts You Need to Know for Railroad Retirement

Video Retirement Budgeting Financial Planning


You need to understand the basics of Medicare as you approach 65.

    Welcome, everyone, to another edition of the Highball Advisors Railroad Retirement Whiteboard. My name's John McNamara of Highball Advisors, and today I'm going to talk about Medicare. So, think of this video as Medicare 101. It's high-level stuff. Probably the people who are already on Medicare know all of this stuff because they've already been in the minutia of Medicare, and they know all the letters and the plans and all that.

    But I thought I'd do a video for those, probably 60, 61, 62. They're retiring. "Okay, I know Medicare is out in the distance. Let me just start to get some concepts of what's going on here." Because this is going to be an important part of it. Right? Like I always say, in retirement, the two biggest expenses are taxes and healthcare. Well, Medicare is going to be a big part of the healthcare section. Actually, it's actually part of your taxes, too. But that's a different video for another time.

    So, what is Medicare? It's hospital and medical insurance. And it's broken down into certain parts. So this is going to cover you in case obviously something happens. Part A is the hospital insurance, and part B is medical insurance. So that's you go to see the internal medicine guy, and then part A is where you go into the actual hospital. Part C is Medicare Advantage plans. I always think of those as like HMOs. They'll tell you the doctors and where you're going to go, but it's a much lower cost. So that's part C. And then part D is the prescription drugs. Obviously a lot of people as you age, you start taking drugs and this helps supplement your drug costs in retirement.

    So who is it for? It's for 65 and older to be eligible. Now obviously, you have disability situations where people can get onto Medicare before. Kidney issues, you can get on Medicare before. But for this video, like I said, this is 101. It's just 65 and over. Okay? So, that's what that is. Now, how do you enroll? So if you're already receiving railroad retirement, it's just going to automatically enroll you in part A and B. That's the hospital medical insurance part. And then, obviously, you can make other decisions about C and D and all those Medicap plans. Things like that.

    Now, if you're not receiving, you need to contact the Railroad Retirement Board three months before 65. That's the best way to do it to receive your parts A and B. And now, how much does it cost? Right? That's the nuts and bolts. Part A is free, but in the hospital, you have a deductible. It's up to $1,566, I think is the latest amount. And it moves every year, obviously with medical inflation. Then part B is $170 per month, and that was for 2022. You got to start budging those things. Now we're starting to think about that.

    Now, obviously, A and B, they don't cover everything. And then I'll do another video probably on how do you supplement that. But we're just staying high level in this video. Now, that number can change based off of any IRMAA charges. Right? Those are based on your income. If you're a higher income earner and you're on Medicare, this number is going to be significantly higher. So those are the things you want to keep an eye on on the IRMAA charges.

    And then part D, which is the drugs, is around $43 a month for the part D. Now you might say yourself, "Well, hey, listen, John, I'm 65. I'm still working. I don't need Medicare. I have a nice healthcare plan through my railroad." So, in that case, part B will be delayed because you're in a large employer plan. 20 and over, it gets delayed. However, you still need to notify the Railroad Retirement Board for part A. They need to know that. And then once you leave the railroad, I think you have up to seven months, but you immediately need to file for the part B section. I think it's special enrollment period, it's called. So this is just Medicare 101, as I like to say. Just start to get familiar with some of the terms. Like I said, a big part of your retirement, no doubt about it.

    So feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions about that. I'm not by any stretch of the imagination an expert on Medicare, but know some of the terms. And if I can't help you, I'll reach out and get you an answer. I know a lot of great people who are real Medicare specialists, to say the least. So I hope you found this video helpful. Click on the subscribe button, or click on the notifications also to get the latest video. And until next time, everyone, please stay safe, stay on track, and take care. So long, everybody. Bye.

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