Below is a general guide to the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) application process. Before applying for an MSP, you should call your local Medicaid office for application steps, submission information (online, mail, appointment, or through community health centers and other organizations), and other state-specific guidelines. Call your State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) to find out if you are eligible for an MSP in your state.
Examples of documentation that may be required for your MSP application include:
- Your Social Security card
- Your Medicare card
- Your birth certificate, passport, or green card
- Proof of your address (e.g., electric or phone bill)
- Proof of your income (e.g., Social Security Administration award letter, income tax return, pay stub)
- Information about your assets (e.g., bank statements, stock certificates, life insurance policies)
- Contact your local Medicaid office to find out how to fill out an application and which documents you must submit.
- Remember, applications and required documentation vary by state. For instance, some states may not require that you submit certain information, such as income or asset documentation.
- Before submitting your application, be sure to make a copy. If you are at a Medicaid office, ask that they make a copy for you.
- You should be sent a Notice of Action within 45 days of filing an application. This notice will inform you of your application status.
- If you receive a denial and are told you do not qualify for an MSP, you have the right to request a fair hearing to challenge the decision.
- If you receive an approval:
- And are found eligible for SLMB or QI, the state will pay your Part B premium starting the month indicated on your Notice of Action. However, it may take several months for the Part B premium ($134 in 2018) to be added back to your monthly Social Security check. Do not be concerned: you should be reimbursed with a lump-sum check for each month that your premium should be paid for.
- And found eligible for QMB, your benefits begin the next month.
- If you do not receive a Notice of Action within 45 days, contact the Medicaid office where you applied.
If you are approved, you will need to renew (recertify) your MSP every year. If you do not receive a notice in the mail to recertify, contact your local Medicaid office and ask what you need to do to make sure you receive your MSP benefits in the following year.