How Can I Enroll in Medicare Part D?
You can enroll in a Medicare Part D plan during one of the three enrollment periods.
After choosing the prescription drug plan that is right for you, you can enroll
as you turn 65 years old (Initial Enrollment Period, or IEP), during the Annual
Enrollment Period (AEP) between October 15th through December 7th, or during a Special
Enrollment Period (SEP). If enrolling during the AEP, your plan should have detailed
information on more specific enrollment options as the period nears.
Once an appropriate enrollment period approaches, there are a few steps you can
take to enroll. You can choose one of the following options:
- Enroll on the plan’s website
- Enroll on
- Enroll by the plan’s paper enrollment form
- Enroll by calling the plan
- Enroll by calling 1-800-MEDICARE (1-800-633-4227). TTY users call 1-877-486-2048, 24 hours
a day, 7 days a week
Avoiding the Late Enrollment Penalty
One thing to remember when preparing to enroll in a Part D plan is the Late Enrollment
Penalty (LEP). This penalty makes enrolling during the proper enrollment period
crucial. You may pay a monthly Late Enrollment Penalty (LEP) assessed by Medicare
if all of the following hold true prior to enrollment.
- You went longer than 63 days without creditable prescription drug coverage (as good as Medicare’s).
- The 63 days without creditable coverage was after the end of your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP). In other words, you went 63 days or more after three months past your 65th birthday without coverage1.
- You did not have creditable coverage when your IEP ended.
1Your IEP is the 7-month period that begins three months before your 65th birthday, includes your birthday month and ends three months afterward.. There is an exception if your birthday falls on the first of any month, your 7-month IEP begins and ends one month sooner. For example, if your birthday is July 1, your 7-month IEP is the same as if you were born in June— beginning in March and ending in September.