Myth vs Fact: Can I Get Medicare if I’ve Never Worked?

For over 50 years, the Medicare system has been helping adults over 65 and individuals with disabilities afford healthcare. The system is designed to help individuals and families pay for medical services including hospital visits, preventive services, skilled nursing facilities, and hospice.

Medicare is available without a premium cost to individuals who have worked a total of 40 quarters (10 years). But that begs the question, can I get Medicare if I have never worked?

The answer, it depends. This article will explain Medicare eligibility for individuals that have never worked.

What Is Medicare?

Medicare is a federal health insurance program for people 65 and over, and people with disabilities. There are 4 parts of Medicare:

Medicare Part A covers hospital stays, nursing facilities, hospice, and some types of home health care. Medicare Part B is medical insurance for outpatient care and preventive services. Medicare Part C, also known as Medicare Advantage, provides additional coverage towards things that Parts A and B do not cover. Medicare Part D helps cover prescription drug costs.

Medicare eligibility depends on whether you are of Medicare age or have a qualifying condition. Learn more about the parts of Medicare and your eligibility when you speak to a Medicare agent.

There is also Medicaid. The difference between Medicare vs Medicaid? Medicaid is based on an individual or family’s income whereas Medicare is based primarily on age. Both Medicare and Medicaid help individuals with disabilities and people can have Medicare and Medicaid at the same time.

Can I Get Medicare If I Have Never Worked?

You can get Medicare even if you have never worked. Keep reading for a list of special circumstances that qualify you for Medicare.

Spousal Coverage

If your spouse of over 1 year is eligible for social security, disability, or retirement benefits you may be eligible for Medicare. If you are divorced but your former spouse of 10 years or more is eligible for benefits, you may be eligible for Medicare.

If your spouse is deceased and you are currently single you may be eligible if your spouse was eligible for social security, disability, or retirement benefits.

Medical Conditions

There are several medical conditions that qualify you for Medicare Part A. These include permanent kidney failure, ALS, and certain disabilities Talk to a Medicare specialist or visit the US Department of Health and Human Services Medicare benefits page to learn more about disability eligibility.

Paid Premium

Many people qualify for premium free Medicare Part A. If you are not eligible for free Medicare Part A you can pay a monthly premium for the same benefits. To apply for Medicare you must be at least 65 years old and a lawful citizen of the United States for at least 5 years. Medicare Part A may cost up to $470 per month. If you worked but it was for less than 10 years your premium payment may be lower.

Sign Up for Medicare

Can I get Medicare if I never work? Yes! If you meet any of the criteria above you may be eligible for Medicare part A.

Spousal coverage, certain medical conditions, and disabilities could impact your eligibility status. And if you’re not eligible for zero-premium Medicare, you can pay a monthly premium for Medicare health insurance coverage.

If you have questions about Medicare or your eligibility, contact us online today. We are here to help!