So you’re 65 and you just decided to retire in 2016. Now it’s time to reap the benefits of your years of labor and sign up for Medicare in 2016. But if you just turned to the Medicare website you might just learn that the Medicare Enrollment period for 2016 ended already in early December. Now before you start panicking about the possibility of remaining uninsured this year or the many fees associated with late enrollment, we have some good news for you. You have not missed a single deadline.


For cases like yours the federal government has a special enrollment period that lets you sign up for Medicare for the first time without late penalties and with covering starting next month. All you have to do is sign up for Medicare within eight months of losing your employer’s coverage. So whether you lose coverage on your last day of work or months later you can still sign up for Medicare coverage.


Now what Medicare coverage should you choose? You can choose one of the two original Medicare plans. Medicare Part A insurance plans cover hospice care, nursing home care and home health services while Medicare Part B insurance plans cover preventive and medically necessary services whether in the hospital or outside of it. You can also upgrade to one of the many Medicare Advantage Plans available. A private insurance agency provides you with the benefits of both Part A and Part B plans and more, such as prescription coverage.