FAQ Friday: Losing Group Coverage = Medicare Supplement Guaranteed Issue

Guaranteed issue rights (also called “Medigap protections”) are rights you have in certain situations when insurance companies must offer you certain Medigap policies. In these situations, an insurance company:

  • Must sell you a Medigap policy
  • Must cover all your pre-existing health conditions
  • Can’t charge you more for a Medigap policy because of past or present health problems

In most cases, you have a guaranteed issue right when you have other health coverage that changes in some way, like when you lose the other health care coverage.

You have Original Medicare and an employer group health plan (including retiree or COBRA coverage) or union coverage that pays after Medicare pays and that plan is ending.

You have the right to buy Medigap Plan A, B, C, F, K, or L that’s sold by any insurance company in your state.

If you have COBRA coverage, you can either buy a Medigap policy right away or wait until the COBRA coverage ends.

You can/must apply for a Medigap policy no later than 63 calendar days after the latest of these 3 dates:

  • Date the coverage ends
  • Date on the notice you get telling you that coverage is ending (if you get one)
  • Date on a claim denial, if this is the only way you know that your coverage ended