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[x_blockquote cite=”Cindy (Bridgeport, CT)” type=”left”]Dear Marci,
I volunteer at a local senior center and I have Medicare myself. With Medicare’s Fall Open Enrollment coming up, I know that Medicare plans will be advertising. What rules do these plans have to follow? What should we do if plans break these rules?[/x_blockquote]
Insurance companies selling Medicare private plans (which include Part D and Medicare Advantage plans) must follow certain rules when promoting their products. These rules are meant to prevent plans from presenting misleading information about a plan’s costs or benefits. This is also known as marketing fraud.
Medicare private plans are allowed to conduct certain activities. For instance, companies can market their plans through direct mail, radio, television, and print advertisements. Plans can also send emails, but they must provide an opt-out option in the email for people who do not wish to receive them. Agents can also visit your home if you invite them for a marketing appointment.
Insurance agents cannot:
If you feel a plan or agent has violated Medicare’s marketing rules, you should save all documented proof, when available, such as an agent’s business card, the plan’s marketing materials, and your phone call records. Report the activity to 1-800-MEDICARE or your local Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP). To contact your SMP, call 877-808-2468 or visit www.smpresource.org.
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