There are 3 Times You Can Sign Up for Medicare

Initial Enrollment Period

image1

 If you're eligible for Medicare when you turn 65, you can sign up during your Initial Enrollment Period (IEP). This is a 7-month period that begins three months before the month you turn 65, includes the month you turn 65, and ends three months after the month you turn 65. 

**Important: In some cases, if you don't sign up for Medicare Part B when you are first eligible, you will have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Part B, and you could have a gap in your health coverage.

Special Enrollment Period

image2

 Once your Initial Enrollment Period ends, you may have a chance to sign up for Part A (if you have to buy it) and Part B during a Special Enrollment Period (SEP), but only if you meet certain requirements. If you're covered under a Group health plan based on current employment, you have a Special Enrollment Period to sign up for Part A and/or Part B at any time as long as you or your spouse (or family member if you are disabled) is working, and you're covered by a group health plan through the employer or union based on that work. 

General Enrollment Period

image3

 If you don't sign up for Part A (if you have to buy it) and/or Part B when you are first eligible, and you don't qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, you may have to wait to enroll until the Medicare General Enrollment Period which runs from January 1 to March 31. Coverage would not start until July 1st of that year. In most cases, you will have to pay a late enrollment penalty for as long as you have Part B if you sign up during the General Enrollment Period.