Medicare is an excellent program that provides health coverage for a lot of people that wouldn’t be able to afford it otherwise, but Medicare doesn’t cover everything. There are dozens of common expenses that the program doesn’t pay for and could leave you with a medical bill that you can’t afford to pay for. Keep reading to learn more about the purpose of Medicare or to obtain AARP Medicare Supplement rates.
With the rising cost of health care that is putting a strain on a lot of seniors’ budgets, a lot of Medicare enrollees are looking for ways to offset these costs. One of the best ways to cushion yourself against a massive hospital bill is to purchase a Medicare supplemental plan (also called a Medigap plan) from a supplemental insurance company.
While a lot of people think that these supplemental policies are sold by government agencies, that isn’t true. Insurance companies sell these plans across the United States and help seniors afford health care coverage that many of them wouldn’t be able to pay for. There are ten different supplemental plans, all of them are identified by a letter of the alphabet.
These plans are standardized across the United States, so regardless of which state you live in, Plan L is going to cover the exact same expenses that we detail in this article. This also means that every company that sells Plan L is required to give the same coverage.
Because deciding between Medigap plans can be difficult, we are here to help. Each plan covers different expenses or different portions of categories. One of the common plans is Plan L, which we will cover in this article.
Medicare supplement plan L is one of the two Medigap plans that offers coinsurance coverage with an out of pocket maximum. In this article we will look at how the coverage works, but if you came looking for Medigap quotes then use the form on this page to get started with a set of personalized quotes. We can also get
you a quote for Medigap Plan F or Medigap Plan G coverage if these should interest you in most states, including Georgia.
Being unique can be a good thing and the coverage of Medigap Plan L may be a good match for your budget. There are ten coverage gaps left by Medicare and Plan L covers all of them except for:
- Medicare Part B Deductible of $147
- Medicare Part B Excess Charges
- Foreign Travel Emergencies
These three coverage gaps are not covered at all so they do not apply in the rest of understanding how this plan works. One of the biggest expenses that this plan doesn’t cover is the Part B excess charges, which a lot of enrollees don’t consider.
Whenever you go the doctor or hospital for a service or treatment, there is a Medicare-approved amount for that specific service. According to Federal law, your doctor is allowed to charge 15% more than the predetermined amount. If your Medicare supplemental insurance plan doesn’t cover these excess charges, you could be left to pay for them yourself. In most cases, these excess charges won’t be too extreme, but you could be looking at thousands of dollars that you have to pay for
Medicare Plan L covers 100% of the Medicare Part A coinsurance when you are admitted to the hospital. After that you are covered for 75% of the charges for:
- Medicare Part A Deductible
- Skilled Nursing Care
- Hospice Care
- The first three pints of blood
- Medicare Part B Coinsurance of 20% of outpatient charges
The 25% that you have to pay for each of these coverage gaps does not go on forever. You have an annual out of pocket maximum of $2,320. This means that you pay 25% of the charges for any of these coverage gaps up until you pay $2,320 out of your pocket. At that point 100% of the charges for these coverage gaps will be taken care of by your policy. It’s important to understand exactly what your supplemental insurance plan will cover and how much. Any confusion or misunderstanding could lead to thousands of dollars in bills that your policy isn’t going to pay for.
Because of the coverage, gaps, and portions paid for, Plan L is one of the most unique policies of the 10 available options. It’s easy to see that Plan L doesn’t fill in every single gap, but it is less expensive than other options. This makes Medigap plan L an interesting choice for completing your Medicare insurance.
Why Choose Medicare Supplement Plan L?
When the subject of Plan L comes up we frequently get asked why anyone would choose this plan when Medicare supplement plan J gives you 100% coverage for all the Medicare gaps (learn more about Medicare supplement plan J). The answer will come down to your individual situation. If you do not travel outside the United States and if your doctor does not charge more than the Medicare recommended amount then it comes down to doing math. You will have an annual deductible of $147 for Medicare Part B and you are taking on an extra $2,320 of out of pocket maximum. Because every person is different, everyone is going to have different priorities, health circumstances, and preferences for their health care coverage. If you are in good health and can save a great deal on a monthly basis (like $50 per month or more) then you may decide to save the monthly premiums by going with Medicare supplement plan L over the other plans. If you want a plan that will save you even more money, but still provides additional coverage, both Plans A and B give less coverage but will save you money every month.
Your health is one of the biggest determining factors when trying to decide which supplemental plan works best for you. If you are in good health with few blemishes on your medical history, then you can take a gamble on getting a Medigap policy with more holes in the coverage.
The other factor that you have to consider is your finances. Do you have enough money set aside to pay for a more inclusive plan that fills in all of the holes left behind from Medicare, or would a plan that is cheaper fit into your budget more comfortably? Because the majority of Medicare enrollees are living on a fixed income, it’s important to understand how the Medigap plan is going to impact your budget and medical expenses.
When to buy a Medigap Plan?
Enrolling in Medicare and other plans can be confusing. There are different deadlines and procedures that you have to remember, and for most programs, there are consequences if you miss the deadline. Enrolling into a Medigap plan is easy, but It’s very important at WHEN you enroll in one of these plans.
The best time to buy one of these insurance plans is during your Medigap Open Enrollment period. This is six months before the month that you turn 65. Joining a plan during this time offers some incredible benefits, and there are several reasons why you shouldn’t miss it.
The first benefit of the open enrollment period is that you can’t be denied coverage for a Medigap policy during this time. During the six-month period, the insurance companies MUST accept you for any Medigap plan that they sell. After your open enrollment period is over, your application process is just like any other insurance purchase. There is a risk that you can be turned down for the coverage.
The other advantage to the open enrollment period is that it will save you money. During this time, the companies can’t charge you more every month because of your health, even if you have a pre-existing condition. Missing out on the six-month enrollment period could cost you hundreds or thousands of dollars every year in month premiums.
If you’ve already missed your open enrollment time, don’t worry, there is still a great chance that you can be accepted for a Medigap plan. If you want additional healthcare coverage, a supplemental insurance policy could be the best option for you. You can’t put a price tag on the peace of mind that a supplemental insurance policy will bring knowing that your health care won’t break your bank.
One thing to take note of, is a pre-existing condition that some companies have for enrollees. Even if you purchase a plan during open enrollment, while they can’t deny you coverage, they can put a waiting period on some of the expenses that they cover.
The eligibility for these plans is very simple. The only requirements to purchase one of these plans is that you are 65 years-old (a few states have exceptions to this rule) and that you are enrolled in Original Medicare, both parts A and B. As long as you meet both of these requirements, then you can purchase a Medigap policy.
Enrolling into a plan is easy, it’s just like any other insurance plan. The insurance company will have you fill out a simple application with basic questions. If you are outside of the open enrollment period, then you’ll be required to answer a health questionnaire. After you fill out all of the required paperwork, the insurance agent will handle everything after that. Once you start paying monthly premiums, you’ll have additional medical coverage. It’s as easy as that.
Why it’s important
One of the biggest reasons that so many seniors don’t get the health care that they want and need is because of money. Every year medical bills are getting more and more expensive. For people that are living on a fixed income, it can seem impossible to afford the services and treatments that you need to live a long and healthy life.
A Medicare supplemental insurance plan can protect Medicare enrollees against the insane costs of hospital bills and medical treatments.
A lot of enrollees think that Medicare is going to pay for the majority or all of their expenses, when in reality there is a lot left over to pay for. Because there is so much confusion surrounding Medicare, many of the seniors are stunned when they see just how much they have to pay for their surgeries, hospital visits, or doctor visits.
You’ve worked hard over the past several decades to build enough money to retire in comfort. Don’t let ridiculous medical bills break your retirement nest egg and turn our retirement dream into a nightmare. Let our agents find the perfect Medigap policy to fit your needs and budget.
The key to getting the right plan at the best price is to work with an independent agent who specializes in getting you the best Medicare supplemental quote. At CompareMedicareSupplements.net we know that each person needs a personal touch that helps them find the absolute best Medigap plan for their needs. Whether that plan is Medicare supplement plan L or one of the other Medigap plans, we will help inform you on all your options and help you make the best choice. Get started with a set of Medicare supplemental insurance quotes by using the form on this page. If you have any questions about any of the Medigap plans or anything to do with Medicare please contact us.