Medicare and Divorce

My husband and I recently got divorced. I never worked outside the house and was going to get my Medicare based on his work record. Am I still eligible for Original Medicare?

Many divorced or widowed individuals are concerned that the loss of their spouse will affect their ability to qualify for Original Medicare. Let me assure you, your newly single status will not affect whether you qualify or not.

You are eligible for Medicare if you are a U.S citizen or legal resident for at least 5 consecutive years and meet one of the following qualifications:
· You are age 65 or older, or
· You have a qualifying disability if you are younger than age 65, or
· You are any age and have end-stage renal disease (ESRD) or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

While you will still qualify for Original Medicare after your divorce, your new marital status may affect the cost of your Medicare Part A monthly premium. How much of a change you will see will depend on your circumstances, how long you were married and your former spouse’s work history.

You may be allowed to use the work history of your former or deceased spouse, if:
· You were married at least 10 years before the date your divorce was final; or
· You were married at least 1 year before the date of your spouse’s death

Once it is determined you are eligible based on your spouse’s work record, your monthly premium for Part A will depend on how many quarters your spouse paid into Medicare. While each situation may be different, here are three examples:
Example 1: You may qualify for premium-free Part A Original Medicare if your former spouse paid into Medicare for 10 years (40 quarters).
Example 2: You may pay $227 per month in 2017 if your former spouse paid into Medicare for 30-39 quarters.
Example 3: You may pay $413 per month in 2017 if your former spouse paid into Medicare for less than 30 quarters.

You will still be charged additional monthly premiums for your Medicare Part B coverage. The standard Part B premium in 2017 is $134 per month, though most people will pay less.

Because Social Security and Medicare eligibility rules can be complex, and there are some exceptions to the rules listed above, you should call Social Security at 800-772-1213 or, if your spouse was a railroad worker, contact your local Railroad Retirement Board field office to get the most accurate information regarding your specific situation.

For more information on Medicare, please join me for my class, Getting Started with Medicare. You can find a complete list of local classes and registration information - including information on upcoming classes in Willowick, Euclid and South Euclid – on my website at For all your questions concerning Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare Supplements or other health insurance questions, please call me at 440-255-5700 or email me at

Laura Mutsko
Mutsko Insurance Services, LLC
6966 Spinach Drive
Mentor, OH 44060 440-255-5700

Laura Mutsko

Laura Mutsko is a licensed insurance agent offering a complete line of health and life insurance products, including Individual, Group and Family Health, Medicare Advantage Plans, Medicare Supplement Plans, Medicare Part D Prescription Coverage, Vision, Dental and Life Insurance. Mutsko Insurance Services, LLC is located at 6966 Spinach Drive in Mentor, Ohio.

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Volume 8, Issue 7, Posted 11:11 AM, 07.07.2017