News to Use for Agents in the Senior Market
A Publication of Senior Marketing Specialists
Week of December 5, 2016
Urgent! Things to do Before AEP is Over
- Make sure you have called or meet with all of your clients to verify that they have the right plan set up for 2017.
- Make sure they understand their benefits and know to call you if they have questions about them. Remember: A client call to Medicare with benefit questions is considered a complaint against the agent by Medicare because Medicare will think you did not do a good enough job explaining the benefits.
- Verify with the carriers that they received all of your applications, that no outstanding items are required, and that they set up the plan you applied for.
- Set as many follow up appointments as you possibly can for the first quarter of 2017 to verify that each individual’s coverages are working properly. Also discuss coverage options you either did not have the opportunity to review or that you could not compliantly review during your AEP appointment. By doing this, your first quarter can be as profitable to you as AEP.
Why is this important? AEP is almost over and your clients are depending on you to set their plans up properly. Your reputation depends on it.
Opportunities for December 8th to December 31st and Beyond
- New to Medicare
- Service Area Reductions – The Special Enrollment Period for discontinued plans (or Service Area Reductions) will start on December 8th and continue through February 28, 2017, with your new 2017 plan coverage beginning on the first day of the month following enrollment.
- Dual SNP
- Chronic SNP
- Loss of Group Coverage
Why is this important? Many agents stop selling at the end of AEP and they miss countless income opportunities. You can use this time to finish the year stronger than ever before.
The Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period
The Medicare Advantage Disenrollment Period (or MADP) begins on January 1, 2017 and continues through February 14, 2017. During the MADP, you can drop your Medicare Advantage plan and return to original Medicare, plus you will be able to join a stand-alone Medicare Part D prescription drug plan. Note: This does not create a guaranteed issue situation for a Medicare supplement plan.
Why is this important? Clients often find out that the plan that they enrolled in just does not fit their needs or give them the access to care they had expected. You can be there to help them make wise decisions.
Minimum Essential Coverage Notice from Medicare
This notice accompanies IRS Form 1095-B (Health Coverage) [PDF, 290 KB]. You’re getting Form 1095-B because you had Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) coverage for all or part of this tax year. The Affordable Care Act requires people to have health coverage that meets certain standards (called minimum essential coverage).
Q.) When should I get it? A.) Annually, mid-December through January
IRS Information: https://www.irs.gov/uac/about-form-1095-b
Why is this important? Many clients are confused about the involvement of ACA with Medicare. As their Medicare advisor you need to be aware of documents like these when your client asks about them.
Get a quick ACA and Medicare refresher here: https://www.medicare.gov/about-us/affordable-care-act/affordable-care-act.HTML
Changing from a Marketplace plan to Medicare: https://www.healthcare.gov/medicare/changing-from-marketplace-to-medicare/
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