2020 Medicare Changes: What Insurance Agents Need to Know

January 9, 2020

There have been a lot of Medicare changes lately, so we're going to lay them all out here for our field force of producers.

From the January 1, 2020 phase out of Plan F to the Part D donut hole going away, all the Medicare changes you need to know about are right here.

Plan F Phasing Out January 1, 2020

First up is Plan F phasing out starting January 1st of 2020. There are 3 key points you need to know about this:

  1. If you already have a Plan F, you can keep it.
  2. If you were eligible for Medicare before January 1, 2020, you can buy a Plan F whenever you want as long as you can pass underwriting.
  3. If you're eligible for Medicare on or after January 1, 2020, you can't buy an F. However, you still have lots of plans to choose from, including Plan G and N.

You can read a lot more about this here: 4 Things Agents Should Do As Medigap Plan F Phases Out in 2020

4 To-Dos As Plan F Phases Out In 2020 – Download Now

Increased 2020 Medicare Deductibles and Premiums

Next up are the increased Medicare deductibles and premiums for 2020.

  • The Part A deductible is increasing from $1,364 to $1,408.
  • The Part B deductible is increasing from $185 to $198.
  • Finally, the Part B premium is also increasing from $135.50 to $144.60.

Further Reading: 2020 Medicare Parts A and B Premiums and Deductibles Are Here!

IRMAA Bracket Thresholds Changing

There have also been some slight changes to the IRMAA brackets – in 2019, the income threshold was $85,000 for an individual and $170,000 for a couple filing taxes jointly.

For 2020, those thresholds are $87,000 and $174,000. The rest of the higher income brackets have also increased slightly.



Further Reading: 2020 Medicare Parts A and B Premiums and Deductibles Are Here!

eMedicare Initiative Changes

You already know that the Plan Finder tool was revamped for the 2019 AEP – that upgrade is a part of the Trump Administration’s eMedicare initiative.

We should expect more updates in 2020, though Medicare hasn’t announced what’s next in the multi-year plan. We’ll keep you posted.

Further Reading: Medicare.gov's New Plan Finder Tool: What Insurance Agents Should Know

Part D Donut Hole Going Away

Next up is the Part D Donut Hole. In 2019, it’s going away for brand-name drugs, and in 2020, it’ll go for generics as well. Moving forward, your clients will be responsible for 25% of the cost.

Medicare Advantage Isn't Going Anywhere

Finally, Medicare Advantage enrollment continues to soar in popularity. According to CMS, the average monthly premium is the lowest it has been in the last 13 years, and over 24 million people with Medicare are expected to enroll in MA in 2020.

If you don’t currently offer MA, we’re encouraging you to get on board, because it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

Check out our Medicare Advantage carriers

New! RMD Age Being Increased to 72

This isn't mentioned in the video since it became official after we did the video shoot, but it's important enough to mention it here. Congress recently passed the bill called Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act of 2019, or the SECURE Act.

Starting January 1, 2020, the SECURE Act pushes the age at which you are required to start withdrawing money from traditional retirement accounts to age 72 (Money). It used to be age 70 1/2.

Seniors who are currently 70 1/2 or older should proceed with their RMDs as usual. However, anyone who turns 70 1/2 on or after January 1, 2020 is subject to the new rule and has an extra year and a half before they are required to start withdrawals.

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There you have it! Let us know if you have any questions or if our team can support your business in 2020. Thanks for watching, and don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more updates like these.

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