Met with a new client today who was told that he had only 63 days from his Medicare effective date. He was misinformed.
When you are newly eligible for Medicare, you have the 3 months preceding your effective date to enroll in a plan that would be effective the 1st of the month you begin your Medicare eligibility (your birthday month). You also have the month of your birthday and the 3 months following your birthday within which to make your decision.
If you do not make your election during this 7 month period, you must wait until Annual Enrollment (October 15-Dec. 1) to select what coverage you want. You will also incur a penalty during this time for not being on a Medicare drug plan. The penalty is 1% per month based on the national premium average. You will carry that penalty in perpetuity.