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My friend retired in May at the age of 67 1/2. With a seperation package that included a full year's pay and full company health insurance for 12 months she wasn't concerned about getting signed up for social security or medicare. She has been enrolled in Medicare Part A since age 65 but her company insurance was better than Part B or Part D so she never signed up for them. She plans to wait until age 70 to claim her SS, which will be about $30K/yr.

Recently she was advised to claim 1/2 of her ex's SS until now and switch to her own account at 70. She'll get a little over $14K/yr from his SS now. When she went to apply last week she got a surprise regarding Medicare. The SS rep told her even if she has company insurance for a full year she has to apply for Part B within 8 months of retiring or face a penalty and higher Part B premiums for the rest of her life.

This surprised both of us as we thought she could not be penalized so long as her company insurance exceeded what she could get through Medicare. She'll get on Part B before the 8 month deadline but had she not talked to SS now she would have missed it by several months.

I don't understand this ruling but I point it out as a caution to others who may be in the same situation.
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