When can I enroll in Medicare?

There are exceptions for individuals with certain disabilities and/or certain individuals who care coming off of creditable coverage with an employer, but for those aging into Medicare (i.e, turning age 65), every person has their own 7-month “Initial Enrollment Period” during which they may enroll in Medicare. Each person’s 7-month window is unique to them, because it’s based on a person’s 65th birthday month. That 7-month window actually starts before your 65th birthday and includes the following time period:

(1) the 3 months before the month you turn 65;
(2) the entire month in which you turn 65; AND
(3) the 3 months after your 65th birthday month.

Let’s assume that you turn 65 on April 15th. Applying the formula above to your birthday month of April, your personal, 7-month enrollment window would cover January 1st through July 31st and would be calculated as follows:

January, February and March – the 3 months before your 65th birthday month of April;
April – your birthday month; and
May, June and July – the 3 months after your birthday month of April.