California Birthday Rule

California Birthday Rule

Everyone knows that a birthday is pretty special, but if you are a Medicare beneficiary in the state of California, your special day can bring you more than cake and a candle to blow out. Medicare recipients in the Golden State who are enrolled in a Medicare Supplement Plan are gifted with the guaranteed opportunity each year to make changes to their Medigap coverage. The Medicare Supplement Guaranteed Issue Birthday Rule allows you to drop your current plan and switch to another one with equal or lesser benefits regardless of any pre-existing conditions. You will not have to answer any medical questions during this enrollment opportunity.

The Medicare Supplement Guaranteed Issue Birthday Rule is offered in the state of California to give beneficiaries who reside there the chance to switch plans under certain circumstances. This opportunity begins on your birthday and ends 30 days later, and allows individuals who are already enrolled in Medigap to switch to another plan as long as that plan does not offer additional benefits to their current policy. This Birthday Rule does not affect other enrollment periods during the year, but it does provide an additional opportunity for you to make a change without being subject to medical underwriting.

If you choose to change plans, your new policy will become effective on the first day of the month following your application date. For instance, if your application date is March 20, the policy will go into effect on April 1. You can apply during the 30 days prior to your birthday, but it will not be effective until your birthday or thereafter. This Birthday Rule does not have any affect on your Part A, Part B, or Part D insurance.

This is a great opportunity for Medicare beneficiaries to compare supplemental insurance plans and find one that might offer a more cost effective premium. The plan you switch to must offer equal or lesser benefits, but you can choose a plan from any company. If your birthday is approaching, you may want to start reviewing your options.