If your spouse is under age 65, Medicare will not cover them unless they qualify for Medicare on their own. If you are a Medicare beneficiary, your coverage does not extend to your spouse.
The only way to collect Medicare benefits before age 65 is by having a qualified disability or medical condition. You can only earn Medicare eligibility based on your own disability, not because your spouse is eligible for Medicare.
If your spouse is under age 65, they could potentially qualify for Medicare if one of the following circumstances applies to them:
If you qualify for Medicare but did not pay Medicare taxes for at least 40 quarters (10 years), you will not be eligible for premium-free Medicare Part A (hospital insurance). You will have to pay a monthly Part A premium, which can be as high as $437 per month in 2019.
When your younger spouse reaches age 62, you may be able to get premium-free Part A coverage if your spouse has paid the required amount of Medicare taxes (40 quarters), regardless of whether or not you paid any Medicare taxes.
Note: You must be married for at least one year before an older spouse can be eligible for Medicare based on a younger spouse’s work record.
If you have a Medicare Advantage plan (Medicare Part C), it does not cover your spouse. If your spouse is under age 65, they will only be eligible for Medicare Advantage plan coverage if they are eligible for Medicare, as outlined above.
A Medicare Advantage plan can offer additional benefits not covered by Original Medicare. Some of these additional benefits may include:
Some Medicare Advantage plans may also cover home care items or services, such as bathroom grab bars or meal delivery.
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Medicare Part D, which provides coverage for prescription drugs, may be obtained by anyone under the age of 65 who qualifies for Original Medicare because of a disability or condition, as outlined above.
If you have Medicare Part D coverage, your plan does not cover your spouse. They must qualify for a Part D plan on their own.
Medicare Supplement Insurance, or Medigap, can be used in conjunction with Original Medicare coverage to help pay for some Medicare out-of-pocket costs such as deductibles and copays. If you have a Medigap plan, it does not cover your spouse.
Depending on your Medigap plan provider, you could potentially get a discount if you and your spouse enroll in separate individual policies from the same insurance company.
In the following states, insurance companies are required to offer at least one Medicare Supplement Insurance plan to people under the age of 65 with a disability who qualify for Original Medicare:
The federal government does not require all states to offer Medigap plans to anyone under 65, even if those individuals qualify for Original Medicare because of a disability. In addition, the cost of a Medigap plan for someone under 65 may be higher.
Are you or your spouse nearing Medicare eligibility? Are you already eligible for Medicare?
You may be able to enroll in a Medicare Advantage plan that offers the benefits you need. Some $0 premium Medicare Advantage plans may be available in your area, though $0 premium plans are not offered in all locations.
To learn more about your Medicare Advantage plan options, speak with a licensed insurance agent by calling TTY Users: 711 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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