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Medicare mistakes in elderly planning

The annual open enrollment for Medicare is Oct. 15 through Dec. 7, 2017. In order to enroll, one must be 65 or older and meet eligibility requirements. Having the right information from the start may help seniors avoid costly mistakes during elderly planning. In Texas, not evaluating all options when enrolling in Medicare can lead to long-term out-of-pocket costs. 

The prescription part of Medicare, known as Medicare Part D, can change from one year to the next. Prescription drugs may be less expensive depending on the Part D plan chosen. Experts advise shopping wisely and evaluating all medication needs against the different plans offered. Parties can secure the best deals possible when shopping for Medicare Part D to avoid paying high prescription costs over the course of the yearly plan

Assuming all Medicare Part D plans are the same is risky, and what is right for one may not be not right for others. Every person's prescription intake is different, and the Part D plans reflect that. In some cases, Medicare Advantage plans may be an alternative for seniors, but parties should check the plan provider network before committing. There may be a need to change doctors if they are not in the approved network.

Medicare automatically enrolls seniors 65 years of age or older who are already collecting Social Security. Part B premium rates are income based, so the higher one's adjusted gross income, the higher his or her monthly premiums. Spreading out withdrawals from tax-deferred accounts over several years may save money on Medicare premiums. In Texas, seniors with questions about elderly planning and Medicare may benefit by consulting with a well-informed attorney to discuss all options.

Source: fool.com, "5 Costly Medicare Mistakes to Avoid -- The Motley Fool", Keith Speights, Oct. 17, 2017

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