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Federal Employees Benefits Q &A

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wyre  
#1 Posted : Thursday, May 20, 2021 11:39:44 AM(UTC)
wyre

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Just got off the phone with social security, trying to get my IRMAA adjusted to match my post-retirement adjusted gross income. I was surprised when she insisted that we still pay a part D IRMAA even tho I am not enrolled in medicare Part D, since I’m paying for federal health insurance. I’m pretty sure Ed always said we didn’t need to take part D if enrolled in FEHB …so charging an IRMAA for something I’m not enrolled in seems odd. Is this something new?

With pension (plus the WEP penalty for social security that affects CSRS retirees), my income took a dip upon retirement — but the IRMAA surcharge has been a rather surprising ( and rather high) additional cost that I wasn’t fully anticipating. Really would appreciate clarification as to whether a retired fed who is enrolled in FEHB plus medicare B should be assessed an IRMAA for part D in addition to the IRMAA for Part B ( which I am enrolled in). She said we have to pay it regardless of what type of insurance we have for drug coverage — but how can Medicare add a surcharge for something they’re not providing?

On the plus side, they were willing to take the updated info over the phone. Not sure how that is handled retroactively … I guess I will find out — but if they are inappropriately assessing that Part D IRMAA , I’d appreciate a citation that I can use when I question the additional charge. Thanks!
GWPDA  
#2 Posted : Saturday, May 22, 2021 6:17:11 AM(UTC)
GWPDA

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https://www.medicare.gov...rks-with-other-insurance

"Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) Program

This is health coverage for current and retired federal employees and covered family members. These plans include creditable prescription drug coverage, so you don’t need to get Medicare drug coverage. However, if you decide to get Medicare drug coverage, you can keep your FEHB plan, and in most cases, the Medicare plan will pay first. For more information, visit opm.gov/healthcare-insurance/healthcare, or call the Office of Personnel Management at 1‑888‑767‑6738. Visit opm.gov/retirement-services/benefits-officers-center/agency-benefits-officers for a list of Benefits Officers. You can also call your plan if you have questions."

Reading this tells us that those enrolled in FEHB have creditable prescription drug coverage and no Medicare drug coverage is required. The representative misunderstood your coverage, thinking it was some kind of Medicare supplement.
thanks 1 user thanked GWPDA for this useful post.
wyre on 5/25/2021(UTC)
chicagoexam  
#3 Posted : Monday, May 24, 2021 2:29:17 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: wyre Go to Quoted Post
Just got off the phone with social security, trying to get my IRMAA adjusted to match my post-retirement adjusted gross income. I was surprised when she insisted that we still pay a part D IRMAA even tho I am not enrolled in medicare Part D, since I’m paying for federal health insurance. I’m pretty sure Ed always said we didn’t need to take part D if enrolled in FEHB …so charging an IRMAA for something I’m not enrolled in seems odd. Is this something new?

With pension (plus the WEP penalty for social security that affects CSRS retirees), my income took a dip upon retirement — but the IRMAA surcharge has been a rather surprising ( and rather high) additional cost that I wasn’t fully anticipating. Really would appreciate clarification as to whether a retired fed who is enrolled in FEHB plus medicare B should be assessed an IRMAA for part D in addition to the IRMAA for Part B ( which I am enrolled in). She said we have to pay it regardless of what type of insurance we have for drug coverage — but how can Medicare add a surcharge for something they’re not providing?

On the plus side, they were willing to take the updated info over the phone. Not sure how that is handled retroactively … I guess I will find out — but if they are inappropriately assessing that Part D IRMAA , I’d appreciate a citation that I can use when I question the additional charge. Thanks!



There's this: https://www.medicare.gov...y-premium-for-drug-plans and this: https://www.ssa.gov/bene...e/medicare-premiums.html - the key, I think, is Medicare prescription drug coverage.


As long as you don't have a Medicare part D plan or a Medicare Advantage plan with drug coverage, and aren't enrolled in a prescription drug plan that has Medicare drug coverage (the card would have the logo "Medicare Rx" on it), you shouldn't be charged IRMAA D. If you never got a letter saying you are being charged IRMAA D, I wouldn't worry about what the phone rep said.
thanks 1 user thanked for this useful post.
wyre on 5/25/2021(UTC)
wyre  
#4 Posted : Tuesday, May 25, 2021 2:44:58 PM(UTC)
wyre

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Thanks to both of you for confirming what I thought - I chatted with medicare, and the rep there also assured me that if I’m not signed up for part D they can’t add an IRMAA for it. I sent a copy of the chat to the SS “specialist” who was helping me along with my 1040– so hopefully this will be adjusted. I think she thought FEHB was a “medicare advantage” plan, which would be subject to a part D IRMAA.

They sent me a larger IRMAA assessment this year, even tho my 2019 income was about 7000 lower than 2018’s … which made me think they were already overcharging me. It’s hard to tell, since they take my full (WEP reduced) SS and then bill me the differential. For 2021, my 2020 income definitely drops me to the next lower IRMAA tier assuming the “one time exception” (my retirement) is approved and kicks in. Here’s hoping!
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