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How Moving Can Trigger a Medicare Special Enrollment Period

While not just any move will allow you to change your Medicare coverage, it’s important to learn the events that could lead to a Special Enrollment Period.

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If you’re making a move to a new place, you could be eligible for a special enrollment period and the opportunity to change your Medicare Advantage and Medicare prescription drug coverage plan.

As long as your move is permanent and there are different plans available in the area, moving or relocating can trigger a special enrollment period outside Medicare Annual Enrollment, Oct. 15 - Dec. 7.

Moving In-State vs. Out-of-State

Each state has its own exchange and offers different Medicare plan options, so you’ll almost always trigger an SEP with a move to a new state .

If you move to a new location in the same state , already have Medicare coverage and the plans in your new area aren’t the same ones in your current area, this would also trigger an SEP.

Once your SEP starts, you’ll have two full months to enroll in a new Medicare Advantage or Medicare Part D plan within the same "metal level" as your current plan. You can also choose to leave Medicare Advantage and go back to Original Medicare during this SEP.

Typically, if you notify your existing plan before the move, your SEP will start the month before the month you move and lasts through two months after the move. If you wait until after the move to notify your plan, the SEP begins the month you notify them and lasts for two months after that.

Other Moves That Could Trigger an SEP

New Special Enrollment Periods for 2023

Starting January 1, 2023, you may be eligible for a SEP because of the following circumstances:

  • Impacts by natural disasters or emergency

  • Incarceration

  • Lose of Medicaid coverage

International Moves

But what if you didn’t live in the U.S. when you made your big move back to the states? You’ll be able to join an MA or Medicare Part D plan, and your SEP will last for two months after the month you moved. 

A move into or out of a skilled nursing or other long-term care facility can trigger an SEP. You’ll be able to join, switch or drop coverage while you’re at the institution and for two months after you leave.

If you have a big move coming up and need more details on your Medicare options, call Senior Healthcare Direct at 1-833-463-3262, TTY 711 to speak with a licensed agent. 

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LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The above is meant to be strictly educational and not intended to provide medical advice or solicit the sales of an insurance product or service of any kind.