Turning 65 and becoming eligible for Medicare can be an overwhelming experience. With so many plan options, it's difficult to know where to start. That's where working with a knowledgeable and trustworthy Medicare insurance agent can help guide you through the process. But how do you find one you can trust? This blog post will provide tips on locating a reputable Medicare agent, what to look for, questions to ask, and red flags to watch out for. Having the right agent on your side can ensure you select the optimal Medicare coverage for your needs and budget.
A Medicare broker, also called an agent, is a licensed insurance professional who can assist you in understanding your Medicare choices and enrolling in a Medicare health insurance plan. Agents work for insurance agencies and brokers work independently or for brokerages. They both act as intermediaries between insurance companies and consumers.
Agents and brokers typically specialize in certain types of Medicare insurance like Medicare Advantage, Medicare Supplement (Medigap) or Medicare Part D prescription plans. They are well-versed in the different types of Medicare Plans available in your state and can help match you to appropriate options based on your health profile and preferences.
Working with a Medicare agent or broker offers many benefits:
· They can educate you on the different parts of Medicare - Original Medicare, Medicare Advantage Plans, Medigap and Part D.
· They are familiar with the costs, benefits, network providers, drug formularies, ratings and other details for the various Medicare Plan options.
· They can answer questions and provide advice on choosing between Original Medicare plus a Medigap or a Medicare Advantage Plan.
· They can shop plans from multiple insurance companies and identify the optimal ones for your location, healthcare needs and budget.
· They assist with the Medicare enrollment process including submitting applications, verifying eligibility and following up through approval.
· Many provide ongoing support with claims, billing questions, and re-evaluating coverage during Medicare open enrollment.
With the important role a Medicare agent plays, you want to find one you can trust. Here are some tips:
Leverage your social network by asking friends, family doctors, or others on Medicare for agent recommendations. Word-of-mouth referrals from satisfied customers can be one of the best indicators of credibility.
Organizations like the National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) and American Association for Medicare Supplement Insurance (AAMSI) allow you to search for members by location. Their agents must follow certain ethical standards.
Many states offer insurance agent directories through departments of insurance or health. For example, your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) may list brokers who can advise on Medicare.
It's smart to speak with several agents before deciding. Ask about their experience with Medicare Plans, which insurance companies they work with, what services they provide, fees, and how they are compensated.
Some agents strictly focus on Medicare while others sell other insurance too. Find one dedicated to Medicare or at least has substantial expertise in it.
Agents must be licensed by the state to sell insurance. Verify their license number on your state insurance department website.
Before agreeing to work together, have an exploratory discussion with any agent you are considering. Key questions include:
· Are you licensed in my state to sell Medicare insurance?
· Do you work independently or for specific insurance companies?
· Do you sell all types of Medicare Plans or only certain ones?
· How long have you specialized in Medicare insurance?
· How many clients do you currently assist with Medicare?
· What is your process for assessing my needs and making plan recommendations?
· How can I contact you after enrollment if I have questions?
· How do you get paid for your services?
While most Medicare agents provide legitimate help, there are some bad actors to be aware of. Be careful if an agent:
· Presses you to enroll quickly or with limited plan information.
· Says they represent Medicare itself or a federal agency. Agents work for private companies.
· Requests personal information like banking details or SSNs over the phone.
· Only promotes plans from one insurance provider, likely for higher commissions.
· Offers free meals or gifts for listening to a sales pitch or enrolling.
· Claims they can get you extra benefits not offered to the public. This is illegal.
· Makes earning a commission their main goal over your interests.
As you navigate your initial Medicare enrollment or compare plans during open enrollment, having the assistance of a trusted, ethical, and experienced Medicare insurance agent can make the process smoother. But not all agents live up to this standard. Do your homework when researching agents and trust your instincts during interactions. Ask plenty of questions to determine if they will provide unbiased guidance or simply a sales pitch. Your time investment to find the right agent will pay off with many years of ideal Medicare coverage suited just for you.
You do not have to spend hours reading articles on the internet to get answers to your Medicare questions. Give the licensed insurance agents at Bourgeois Insurance a Call at (985) 803-8999. You will get the answers you seek in a matter of minutes, with no pressure and no sales pitch. We are truly here to help.
There are several resources you can utilize to find a trusted Medicare insurance agent or broker. One option is to ask for recommendations from friends, family, or colleagues who have used a Medicare broker or agent in the past. Another option is to search online for local insurance agencies that specialize in Medicare Plans. It is important to do your own research and read reviews to ensure you are working with a licensed insurance agent or broker that has a good reputation.
A licensed insurance agent or broker can be a helpful Medicare adviser who can provide you with information and guidance on your Medicare choices. They can help you understand the different Medicare Plans available to you and assist you in finding the best Medicare Plan that suits your needs and budget. They can also help answer any questions you may have about Medicare coverage, enrollment periods, and prescription drug plans.
A Medicare broker is an independent agent who works with multiple insurance companies to help you find the best Medicare coverage options available. They have knowledge of different insurance companies and can help you navigate through the various Medicare Plans and options. On the other hand, a Medicare agent is typically a captive agent who represents a specific insurance company and can only offer you plans from that company.
You can verify the license of an insurance agent or broker by checking with your state's department of insurance. Most states have an online portal where you can search for licensed insurance professionals. It is important to work with a licensed insurance agent or broker to ensure they are qualified and authorized to sell Medicare Plans.
To find a Medicare insurance agent or broker in your area, you can use online directories provided by insurance associations or organizations. These directories allow you to search for licensed insurance professionals based on your location. You can also contact your local insurance agency or insurance carriers directly and ask for a list of licensed Medicare insurance agents or brokers who operate in your area.
When choosing a Medicare insurance agent or broker, it is important to consider their experience, expertise, and reputation. Look for agents or brokers who have specialized in Medicare Plans and have a good understanding of the different Medicare options available. It is also important to choose someone who is transparent, responsive, and has good communication skills. Reading online reviews and asking for references can also help you make an informed decision.
Yes, a Medicare insurance broker can help you find the best coverage for your needs. They have access to multiple insurance companies and can compare different plans to find the one that offers the coverage you require at the best price. They can also guide you through the process of selecting supplemental coverage, such as a prescription drug plan or a Medigap policy, to ensure you have comprehensive Medicare coverage.
Yes, insurance brokers and agents are typically paid commissions by the insurance companies they work with. This means that they receive a percentage of the premium you pay for your Medicare Plan. It is important to keep this in mind when working with a broker or agent and to ensure that their recommendations are in your best interest, not just driven by the commission they will earn.
Navigating Medicare can be complex, and a Medicare insurance agent or broker can help simplify the process for you. They can assist you with understanding the different enrollment periods, explaining the different parts of Medicare (Part A, Part B, Part C, and Part D), and helping you navigate through the various Medicare choices available in your area. They can also help you understand the difference between Original Medicare and Medicare Advantage Plans and guide you in selecting the right option for your needs.
While it is not mandatory to work with a Medicare insurance agent or broker if you are new to Medicare, it can be extremely helpful. Medicare can be confusing, and having a knowledgeable professional by your side can help ensure you make informed decisions about your Medicare coverage. They can guide you through the process, explain the different options, and help you make choices that align with your healthcare needs and budget.
311 N Canal Blvd Thibodaux, LA 70301
311 N Canal Blvd Thibodaux, LA 70301
Plans are insured or covered by Medicare Advantage (HMO, PPO, and PFFS) organization with a Medicare contract and/or a Medicare-approved Part D sponsor. Enrollment in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare. We do not offer every plan in your area. Please contact medicare.gov or 1-800-Medicare to get information on all your options.
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