I’ll be 65 years old soon. When should I apply for Medicare?

We generally advise people to apply for Medicare three months before turning age 65. You will receive a Medicare card about two months before you turn age 65. Your coverage will begin at age 65.

If you are already receiving Social Security benefits when you become eligible for Medicare, we automatically will enroll you in Medicare Parts A and B. However, because you must pay a premium for Part B coverage, you can turn it down.

Note: Residents of Puerto Rico and foreign countries do not get Part B automatically. They must elect this benefit.

Apply online for Medicare only, or call 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-877-486-2048) between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday.  Likewise, you can apply for retirement benefits and Medicare together online.

If you live outside the United States, refer to Service Around the World.


We look forward to personally navigating you through the Medicare maze.


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