Why hasn't the age for signing up for Medicare changed to coincide with the eligibility date for drawing social security?

1 answer | Last updated: May 30, 2014
A fellow caregiver asked...

Why hasn't the age for signing up for Medicare changed to coincide with the eligibility date for drawing social security?


Expert Answers

Steve Weisman hosts the nationally syndicated radio show A Touch of Grey, heard on more than 50 stations, including WABC in New York City and KRLA in Los Angeles. He is a practicing lawyer specializing in estate planning and is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court. He's a public speaker and commentator who has appeared on many radio and television shows throughout the country, and he's the legal editor of Talkers magazine, the preeminent trade publication of talk radio. His latest book is The Truth About Avoiding Scams.

Your question points out a problem with many federal laws: They're often inconsistent. Even though the age for eligibility for Social Security has been raised from 65, this is still the age at which you must enroll in Medicare. In fact, if you don't enroll in Medicare Part B when you're first eligible, you may be subject to penalties when you do enroll (although if you're covered by insurance at work, you can delay enrolling in Medicare Part B without a penalty). I suppose we should just be happy that the age for eligibility for Medicare wasn’t raised, because being able to enroll in Medicare at age 65 usually brings significant health insurance savings.