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Gatos

Sep 2, 2016, 11:30 AM

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Social Security / Medicare

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We are 62 & 64. Neither of us are pulling from social security.

Living 100% in Mexico, when we turn 65 and have no interest in Medicare do we need to do anything ? Are we automatically enrolled in Part A ? Do we need to officially opt-out of Part B ? Can we ?

Thanks.



mcm

Sep 2, 2016, 12:11 PM

Post #2 of 7 (4597 views)

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Re: [Gatos] Social Security / Medicare

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Yes, if you are registered with US social security (have a number and are eligible), you will be automatically enrolled in medicare part A at age 65, at no cost to you. If you DO NOT want part B, you do nothing. If you DO want Part B, you need to enroll specifically, and there will be a premium. You will receive enrollment information at your Mexican address, if that is your address of record. NOTE: if your address of record is the US, then you will be automatically enrolled in both Part A and Part B at age 65.

You should keep in mind that if, at a later date, you decide that you do want to have Medicare Part B, the premium cost will be much higher.

When you do move to Mexico, you should make sure that you either have sufficient funds to ''self-insure'' (pay directly for medical costs, including any major illnesses), or that you have private insurance (available through many companies in Mexico, though premiums rise significantly with age). There are public health options at very low cost, but with potentially long waits for appointments with specialists, and sometimes limited services due to equipment/personnel problems. If you go for this option, talk to people in your area directly to find out the quality of services, since people's experiences seem to vary according to where they live.


(This post was edited by mcm on Sep 2, 2016, 2:35 PM)


Gatos

Sep 2, 2016, 12:41 PM

Post #3 of 7 (4594 views)

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Re: [mcm] Social Security / Medicare

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Thanks for the reply.

I guess the foundation of my question involved paying for Part B. I suspect that if you receive SS they probably take the cost of Part B out of your monthly check. But what happens if you are not receiving SS ?

We have had IMSS for going on 4 years. Just this year they moved us from the principal hospital to a clinic (to offload some workload). At first we were not happy because it is twice as far from the house. But it has worked out extremely well. Before the line for the pharmacy was perhaps up to an hour. Now it is less than 5 minutes, There is a shortage of specialists. My GP wanted me to see a cardiologist for my BP. None were available at IMSS (momentary budget problem). They sent me to an outside (excellent) cardiologist (free).

I have opted for an operation at a private hospital (last year - out of pocket) simply to speed the process along. The cost was a fraction of what it would have been in the States. Overall I have to say that IMSS is pretty comparable (in quality) to say a United Healthcare policy in the US,


joaquinx


Sep 2, 2016, 1:35 PM

Post #4 of 7 (4584 views)

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Re: [Gatos] Social Security / Medicare

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When you turn 65 Social Security will send you a letter describing your options with Medicare. Part A is automatic while you have to opt out of Part B. The letter will be sent to the address that SS has on record whether in the US or overseas.
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My desire to be well-informed is currently at odds with my desire to remain sane.


mcm

Sep 2, 2016, 2:39 PM

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Re: [Gatos] Social Security / Medicare

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Regarding paying for Medicare Part B if you don't receive social security, according to this link from Medicare, you will receive a bill "Notice of medicare Premium Payment due", which can be paid in various ways, including automatic withdrawal from your bank account.


Gringal

Sep 3, 2016, 8:39 AM

Post #6 of 7 (4524 views)

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Re: [mcm] Social Security / Medicare

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An important feature of Medicare Parts A or B worth mentioning: You can only receive said care while in the U.S.A. If you hear of a plan that will work in Mexico, stay far away. Always a scam. It's been tried.

If you're in Mexico for the long haul and don't plan to return to the states ever, you may wish to drop Medicare Part B, which costs you monthly. Both my husband and I dropped it 12 years ago and now have a very healthy "medical savings account". Multiply 200 U.S. times the number of months and the result is impressive. Fortunately, neither of us has required hospitalization, but we have IMSS for backup "just in case".

Other options are:

Keep Parts A and B and arrange for a "medivac" plan to fly you to the states for care. Each person has to figure out whether that would work for them. Lots of considerations there.

Private insurance: Get it while you're under 70 in Mexico. The rates escalate greatly with age.


Gatos

Sep 3, 2016, 9:06 AM

Post #7 of 7 (4516 views)

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Re: [Gringal] Social Security / Medicare

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Thanks.

We took a similar approach to our home insurance in the States. We had no mortgage so were not obligated to have windstorm insurance (perhaps 4000/year with a 10k plus deductible) and homeowners ins. perhaps another 3-4k / year. We did carry flood because it was only something like $300/year. We actually had a separate account where every month I deposited what we were saving on ins.It adds up quickly.

A friend has recommended a private 'group' medical plan here in Mexico. We need to investigate.
 
 
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