When to Buy a Medicare Supplement Insurance Policy

The best time to buy a Medicare supplement insurance policy is during your open enrollment period. This period lasts for six months and begins on the first day of the month in which you’re both age 65 or older and enrolled in Medicare Part B (some states may have additional open enrollment rights under state law). During this period, an insurance company cannot use medical underwriting. This means it cannot:

  • Refuse to sell you any Medicare supplement insurance policy it sells
  • Make you wait for coverage to start (except in limited circumstances)
  • Charge you more for a Medicare supplement insurance policy because of any past or present health conditions

If you buy a Medigap policy when you have a guaranteed issue right, the insurance company can’t use a pre-existing condition waiting period at all.