Medicare enrollment for ex-pats still working

According to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, so long as a person’s health insurance qualifies as a group health plan, they need not get Medicare at 65 regardless of where they live or who provides their health insurance. When they do retire and leave their plan, they will have an eight-month special enrollment period during which they can sign up for basic Medicare and any other Medicare policies.

“A GHP does not have to be in the United States, and the individual (or spouse/family member for disabled) is not required to be working in the United States,” a spokesman explained, citing an agency webpage explanation. “CMS considers a person working for a foreign employer who has a plan that meets the definition of a GHP to meet the requirement for GHP coverage. This also applies to individuals working in countries with national health plans.”

Social Security has consular offices in most countries that can help you enroll in Medicare before you return to the U.S. If there is not one near you, call or email the agency for guidance.