Simple Guide To Medicare Enrollment Period

Medicare enrollment periods are confusing, but don’t worry – this article will break down all the information you need to know for 2022. The best time to enroll in Medicare is during your initial enrollment period which can be found on your original Social Security Card or online at https://www.medicare.gov/. If you’ve missed your window of opportunity, don’t fret! You still have a chance before 2020 arrives! Keep reading for everything you need to know about Medicare and how it could help save money on medical costs later in life.

Medicare Enrollment Periods

Why is Medicare so confusing? Well, there are a lot of different terms and deadlines to remember. But no worries! We’re here for you with this guide on the various enrollment periods and when they happen to help make things easier.

We will break down in the simplest forms each Enrollment period so YOU, the senior consumer will know what these means. Here are the Enrollment Periods we will discuss.

  • Initial Enrollment Period (IEP)
  • Annual Election Period (AEP)
  • General Enrollment Period (GEP)
  • Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment (MAOEP)
  • Special Enrollment Period (SEP)
  • Medigap Open Enrollment Period

What is Initial Enrollment Period for Medicare (IEP)

Every person has an opportunity to enroll in Medicare, which makes the process a lot easier. You have seven months before you turn 65 for this first chance of enrollment and then another three years after that birthday month when it is your second chance.

Meeting certain requirements will make sure you are able to get enrolled at all times so there won’t be any confusion about whether or not things were completed properly from start to finish!

What Happens If I Miss IEP

Think about the worst thing that could happen to you if your IEP insurance coverage lapses. You might face things like:

  • If you don’t enroll in Part B during your IEP, even if it’s just for a few months, then there are some very significant consequences that could be detrimental to the rest of your life. For every 12-month period that you should have had Medicare coverage but didn’t sign up for Part B enrollment and beyond into 2021 when they will face an additional 10% penalty on their monthly premium ($148.50), which is $14.85 – so this means by 2028 they would pay over $1,000 per year or close to one thousand dollars less than what an enrollee pays without any penalty at all!
  • You won’t have to sign up for Part B coverage at your IEP. You can save money by waiting until the General Enrollment Period, or GEP. Your coverage will start on July 1 of that year!
  • You would be shocked to find out how much you could save if you were more conscientious with your prescription drug coverage. For example, when the national base premium is $41 a month and increases by 1% for each consecutive missed month of coverage, it means that an individual who does not have Part D creditable prescription drug insurance will pay about 4 dollars per every one-month period without health care benefits in place. That’s quite costly on its own but as time progresses this penalty rate can add up quickly making life harder than ever before or until they acquire another form of healthcare like Medicare Supplement Insurance plans which are offered at any age, and provide some peace of mind because once enrolled in them beneficiaries know all their bases are covered!
  • The penalties for not purchasing Medicare Part A are severe. If your work credits don’t qualify you to buy it without a premium, and you still refuse to purchase the coverage during your IEP period (10 years), then there will be a 10% penalty that is doubled if this decision lasts two or more years.

What is General Enrollment Period (GEP)

You may have heard of GEP, which is that magical window in the calendar where you can enroll for Medicare Part A and B. But what if I miss it?

Well, luckily there’s a solution! If you are enrolled during this time period your coverage still won’t start until July 1st but at least 10% of the penalties from missing the Initial Enrollment Period will be waived off when signing up for GEP.

How do I Apply for Special Enrollment Period (SEP)

Some people, like me for instance, continue working after the age of 65. I think Medicare’s Special Enrollment Period is a great thing because it provides coverage in case something happens while you are still employed and without insurance. You’re eligible to sign up if your employer offers health benefits or through unions as well!

What is the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period (AEP)

The AEP is a critical time for Medicare enrollees to make important decisions about their coverage.

Starting on October 15th and ending December 7th, you can add or change your healthcare plan with the help of knowledgeable people who are ready to guide you through this process. Your coverage will start on January 1st!

When is The Medicare Advantage Open Enrollment Period (MAOEP)

If you are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan and for any reason don’t like it, then you can change your mind about the healthcare coverage during the new Medicare Open Enrollment Period from January 1 – March 31.

If returning to Original Medicare is not right for you, there may be other options available such as switching plans or keeping what’s already working with an original Part D drug plan alongside it!

If picking up Medi-gap insurance isn’t guaranteed after going back to Original medicare due to pre-existing health questions that need answering first, make sure all of this information is considered before making a final decision on which way forward would work best with your current medical needs.

What is the 6 month Medigap Open Enrollment Period

Once you are enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B, it is time to start looking at Medigap plans. These policies give extra coverage on things like deductibles and copayments for hospital stays that your basic plan doesn’t cover.

You can enroll during a 6-month Open Enrollment window starting with the date of enrollment into Part B services – there are no health questions asked!


It’s never too early to start thinking about what your health care needs will be down the road. That way, you’ll have time to make decisions and prepare for any changes in coverage that may come from Medicare enrollment periods. We know it can feel like a daunting task when there are so many different choices out there, but we’re here to help!

Give us a call or send an email today if you want more information on how your current plan options might change with age, as well as the most up-to-date advice on navigating this process. You deserve the peace of mind knowing that all bases are covered – even if it’s just for tomorrow!