How to avoid the biggest Medicare open enrollment mistake


If you are already on Medicare you hopefully know about the open enrollment period which usually runs from the middle of October to the first week or so of December. This is when you can change your plan or coverage.

Unfortunately, recent research shows that over 70% of folks covered by Medicare are overpaying simply by not reviewing their coverage every year. These overpayments could add up to hundreds even thousands of dollars per year.

Over a 10-year period of time, the amount you overpay for coverage could have paid for a really nice vacation and, in some cases, maybe even a new car.

The first step is to understand whether you will be better served with traditional Medicare or a Medicare Advantage Plan. Traditional Medicare is where you have Medicare Part A, Part B, probably a Medicare Supplement and usually Medicare Part D, which is a prescription drug plan.

At a very basic level, think of traditional Medicare as being similar to traditional health insurance preferred provider type plans. You have more flexibility in choosing your doctors and other care providers and seeing specialists without requiring a referral from a primary care physician.

Medicare Advantage Plans are more like HMOs. If you're in reasonably good health and don't need that much in terms of medical care, this could be a cost effective option for you.
Needless to say, comparing insurance coverage like this can be a very complicated and
mind-numbing experience. You could compare plans by going to the Medicare website,, but your better option, we think, is to work with an independent insurance agent who is an expert in both Medicare Supplement Plans as well as Medicare Advantage Plans from multiple companies.

Reviewing your Medicare coverage options with a Medicare expert every year is a key step in moving you closer to experiencing your version of an incredible retirement, doing what you want, when you want.

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