By Vonda Van Til, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist
Social Security cares about accuracy and we want you to get the exact benefit amount you deserve. Changes in the law affect how we calculate monthly Medicare Part B (medical insurance) and Medicare prescription drug coverage premiums.
- Medicare Part B provides coverage for physician services, outpatient hospital services, certain home health services, durable medical equipment, and other items. Most beneficiaries will pay a standard premium for Part B coverage. Some beneficiaries may also pay a late enrollment surcharge. A small number of beneficiaries with higher incomes will pay a higher Part B premium based on their income.
- Medicare prescription drug coverage helps pay for prescription drugs. Plan costs vary depending on the plan, and on whether you get Extra Help with your portion of the Medicare prescription drug costs. A small number of beneficiaries with higher incomes will pay a higher prescription drug premium based on their income.
If you’re a Medicare beneficiary who must pay more for your Medicare Part B or Medicare prescription drug coverage premium because of your income, and you disagree with the decision, you may request an appeal. The fastest and easiest way to file an appeal is by visiting www.socialsecurity.gov/disability/appeal.
You can also read more at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-10125.pdf.
If your income has gone down due to certain specific circumstances, or if you filed an amended tax return, you can ask for a new decision without having to file an appeal. See our fact sheet, Medicare Premiums: Rules for Higher-Income Beneficiaries (SSA Publication No. 05-10536) at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-10536.pdf. You don’t have to file an appeal to get a new decision.
Vonda Van Til is the Public Affairs Specialist for West Michigan. You can write her c/o Social Security Administration, 3045 Knapp NE, Grand Rapids MI 49525 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.