If you and your husband are enrolled in “original Medicare” Part A and Part B, you’ll be happy to know that you won’t need to change your plans when you move because they’re the same throughout the U.S. You will, however, need to notify the Social Security Administration of your change of address, which you can do at SSA.gov/myaccount/change-of-address.html or by calling 800-772-1213.
If you’re enrolled in a Medicare (Part D) prescription drug plan or a Medicare (Part C) Advantage plan and you move out of your plan’s service area, you’ll need to choose a new plan that serves your new area.
You can make this switch the month before you move and up to two months after the move.
Otherwise, you’ll need to wait until the next open enrollment (in the fall) and could be penalized for having no acceptable prescription drug coverage.
You can switch Advantage plans the month before you move and up to two months after you move.
Be aware that if you relocate out of your Medicare Advantage plan’s service area and fail to enroll in a new plan in your new area, you’ll automatically be switched to original Medicare. This will happen when your old Medicare Advantage plan is forced to unenroll you because you don’t live within the service area.
Medigap plans are standardized across the country. For example, Medigap Plan F offers the same coverage in one state as it does in another state (Massachusetts, Minnesota and Wisconsin have waivers from the federal government allowing them to standardize Medigap plans differently, so plan designs are different in those three states).
Be aware that Medigap costs vary by location, so your monthly Medigap policy premium may be higher or lower depending on the cost of medical care in your new area.
Call your provider and tell them the new ZIP code, and they’ll let you know the cost. Sometimes you’ll be pleasantly surprised that it’s lower.
If it’s not, you could look for a cheaper policy. However, you may have to undergo medical underwriting. Medigap policies come with their own rules for enrolling, and some states have different enrollment standards than others.