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Tips for Moving to Another State with Medicare


If you’re moving to another state with Medicare, you’re going to want the best tips! Before relocating, you might want to learn more about how Medicare works in your new state. Also, you may want to prepare yourself for a change in premium or coverage options depending on your current policy.

How to Transfer Original Medicare to Another State

Those with Original Medicare planning a move to a new state go through a simple process to update residency. You must contact the Social Security Administration about your change of address.

If applicable, you may contact the Railroad Retirement Board instead. You’ll provide your new address and contact information that may need updating. You can also consider if this is a permanent move or if you’re looking to obtain dual residency.

Tips for Medicare Advantage and Moving to Another State

Advantage plans have doctor networks; these networks may vary from county to county. Since policies vary by county, moving will likely result in a necessary plan change.

If you have a Part C plan, upon moving, you can elect to go back to Original Medicare, or you may be able to enroll in a Medigap plan. Although, if you wish to select a new Part C plan, that’s an option.

Changing Medicare Advantage Plans When Moving

Moving is a change that qualifies you for a Special Enrollment Period. The Special Enrollment Period will allow you to change your Medicare Advantage plan, only when you are moving out of your current plans service area. So, if you’re moving down the street, you likely won’t qualify for a plan change.

Understanding Moving to Another State With Medigap

Since Medicare is a federal program, coverage is the same across the United States. You won’t qualify for a Special Enrollment Period if you have Original Medicare and a Medigap plan because these plans operate in all states the same way. But, you can always shop coverage in your new state, you just might go through underwriting when you apply for a new plan.

Keep in mind, Medigap rules vary by state. Some states, like Connecticut, have an all-year Open Enrollment Period for Medigap.

FAQs

Do I need to notify Medicare if I move?
If you move, contact the Social Security Administration with your change of address. This will update your address for Medicare.
Can you use Medicare in another state?
As a beneficiary, you can use your Medicare throughout the United States. If you’re traveling, make sure that the doctors you’re planning on seeing accept Medicare. You can always call the front desk before a doctor’s visit to make sure you won’t be in for any surprises.
Can I keep my Medicare Supplement if I move to another state?
There are ten standard Medigap options available for members. These Medigap plans are available in all states but Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. If you move with a Medigap plan, you may continue coverage. But, Medigap is more expensive in certain states.
Can I see a doctor in another state with Medicare?
As a Medicare beneficiary, you can travel to any of the states and have coverage. But, those with an Advantage plan likely need to stay in the service area to maintain coverage.
Do you lose Medicare if you move out of the country?
No, you can keep your Medicare if you move out of the country. If your dream is to retire abroad, then you’ll need to buy private health insurance or consider enrolling in the country’s public health plan.
Do I have to pay for Medicare if I live abroad?
If you need hospital care and can travel back to the United States, your Part A will still be available to you. However, unless you continue paying your Part B premium while living abroad, you won’t have any coverage for outpatient services if you return to the United States.

How to Transfer Medicare to Another State

If you make necessary calls ahead of time, you can prevent any lapse in coverage. After all, health insurance should be here to protect you, not cause you any harm. Are you moving soon? Are you considering a change of scenery? Don't worry about your Medicare; give us a call to talk about your options. You can contact our agents by calling the number above or fill out an online rate comparison form to get started today!

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Lindsay Malzone

Lindsay Malzone is the Medicare expert for MedicareFAQ. She has been working in the Medicare industry since 2017. She is featured in many publications as well as writes regularly for other expert columns regarding Medicare. You can also find her over on our Medicare Channel on YouTube as well as contributing to our Medicare Community on Facebook.

2 thoughts on “Tips for Moving to Another State with Medicare

  1. Have a question. Due to a change in family circumstances, we have to move my wife’s mother from Illinois to live with us in Texas in the next 30 days. She is wheelchair bound and we will require daily assistance in the form of an aide, a service she currently receives in Illinois, to get her washed and changed as we are not physically able to perform these tasks ourselves. We aren’t in a financial position to be able to afford to pay for private in-home care and therefore need to transfer her Medicare/Social Security benefits in an expedited manner.

    It seems that to transfer her Medicare benefits, we need to establish her residency in Texas. The challenge is she won’t fly out here and she will be driven out in 30 days, but not any sooner. As soon as she arrives, we’ll need the in-home care to assist with taking care of her, so there’s the dilemma.

    All her credit cards and her state ID have her Illinois address. We will try to set up a local bank account for her as a form of ID for Social Security, but not sure with today’s more rigid security protocols that will even happen with her living in another state. Do you have any suggestions how to expedite the transfer? We are very concerned. Thanks.

    Brian & Diane

    1. Hello! Medicare does not pay for in-home care, Medicaid does. You’ll want to reach out to your local Medicaid office to find out what you need to do to transfer her benefits. Each state has different limitations and guidelines.

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