FAQ Friday: When can I shop my Medicare Part D drug plan?

When you’re first starting Medicare, this is called your Initial Enrollment Period, or IEP. You have 3 months before, the month of and 3 months after your 65th birthday to shop for you Part D drug plan. Anytime after that is called the Annual Enrollment Period, or AEP. This time frame allows you to shop your Part D drug plan once every year. The dates for this period start on October 15th and end on December 7th.

If you are losing retirement/group insurance or you have moved out of the service area of your plan, this is called a Special Election Period, or SEP. Once you find out you are losing your coverage, you have 60 days before the last day of your coverage and 63 days after you lose your coverage to enroll in a Part D drug plan.