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How do I pay my Medicare premiums?


You can pay your Medicare premiums several ways, depending on which Medicare part you’re paying for and if you’re receiving Social Security benefits.

Typically, most people don’t pay premiums for Medicare Part A but pay them for Part B, which is $174.70 a month in 2024. People with high incomes pay even more.

You’ll also have to pay premiums if you decide to buy extra policies from private insurers to help cover Medicare’s out-of-pocket costs. Private Part D prescription drug plans and Medicare supplement plans, also known as Medigap, have separate premiums. If you have coverage from a private Medicare Advantage plan instead of original Medicare, you may have extra premiums, too.

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How do I pay premiums for Medicare Part A?

You typically won’t pay a premium for Medicare Part A if you or your spouse had Medicare taxes deducted from your pay for 40 calendar quarters, which is 10 years of work.

Otherwise, you may need to pay $278 or $505 per month for Part A in 2024, depending on how long you or your spouse worked. Medicare will bill you for any Part A premium you owe, and you have the option of paying electronically or by mail. Details are below.

How do I pay premiums for Medicare Part B?    

If you receive Social Security or Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) benefits, your Medicare Part B premiums are automatically deducted and you won’t receive a bill.

If you aren’t receiving Social Security benefits yet, you’ll receive a quarterly bill from Medicare for your Part B premiums, which are due on the 25th of the month. You have four ways to pay them:

1. Log into your online Medicare account and pay by credit or debit card or electronic funds transfer from your checking or savings account.

After you log in, select My premiums from the drop-down menu under your name, then Pay Now and choose your payment method and the amount you want to pay. You’ll be linked to the U.S. Treasury’s secure Pay.gov site to complete your payment.

2. Sign up for Medicare Easy Pay. With this free service, Medicare automatically deducts the premium payments from your savings or checking account each month. Deductions are made on the 20th of the month or the next business day.

To sign up for Medicare Easy Pay, log into your online Medicare account, select My premiums and then Sign up to complete a short online form. You also can enroll by mailing a paper form. It may take six to eight weeks for your automatic deductions to start, and you’ll need to pay your premiums another way until then.

Once your account is established, you’ll receive a monthly statement letting you know the amount Easy Pay will deduct from your bank to CMS Medicare Premiums.

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3. Pay directly from your checking or savings account through your bank’s online bill payment service, if available. Your bank will need your 11-character Medicare number, which is the number on your Medicare card but without the dashes. The payee name is CMS Medicare Insurance and the payee address is:

Medicare Premium Collection Center

P.O. Box 790355

St. Louis, MO 63179-0355

4. Mail your payment to Medicare. You can pay your bill by mail using a check, credit or debit card, or money order. Write your Medicare number on your payment and fill out your payment coupon. Send it to the address on the bill (same as above).

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If you receive your Medicare bill from the Railroad Retirement Board rather than Social Security, you'll need to mail your premium payments to a different address.

What about Part D, Medicare Advantage or Medigap?

If you choose to get extra coverage from a private insurer, you may have to pay additional premiums to the plan:

Part D prescription drug coverage. You pay your regular Part D premiums to the drug plan, not to Social Security or Medicare. Ask your plan about your options. You may receive monthly bills or be able to pay electronically.

You can ask your plan to deduct your premium from your monthly Social Security benefits, called “premium withholding.” The automatic payments can take up to three months to take effect after your request; you may have to pay premiums directly to your plan until then.

If you have to pay a high-income surcharge for Part D, also called an Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA), that extra monthly premium goes to Medicare rather than to the plan. If you receive Social Security benefits, the IRMAA is deducted automatically from your payments. Otherwise, you’ll receive a monthly bill from Medicare for the extra amount and will have the same payment options as listed in Part B above.

Medicare Advantage plans. If you have coverage from a private Medicare Advantage plan rather than original Medicare, you still need to sign up for Medicare parts A and B and pay the monthly premiums. You may have to pay an additional monthly premium to your Medicare Advantage plan, although many plans don’t charge more. Ask your Medicare Advantage plan about your payment options.

If you must pay a high-income surcharge for the drug portion of the coverage, you can either have the IRMAA deducted automatically from your Social Security benefits or RRB benefits, or Medicare will bill you monthly for that amount.

Medicare supplement plans. If you buy a Medigap policy to help cover Medicare’s deductibles and copayments, you’ll have to pay premiums directly to the plan. Contact your plan to find out more.

Keep in mind

If you have trouble affording your Medicare Part A or Part B premiums or out-of-pocket costs, you may qualify for a Medicare Savings Program. Eligibility is based on income and assets, and varies by state. You can find out more from your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP).

If you need help paying your Medicare Part D premium and out-of-pocket costs, you may qualify for the Extra Help program.

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