50 Wishes for
Medicare’s Future

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Wish #21:
Reduce or eliminate the Part B lifetime late enrollment period

Erroneously delaying Medicare enrollment can have lifetime consequences—currently, a lifetime premium penalty of 10 percent is levied for every year a person should have been enrolled in Medicare Part B but was not. This penalty is designed to encourage enrollment by healthy individuals who otherwise might delay enrollment. Yet the penalty is also imposed on those who simply made a mistake. Congress should enact policies to reduce or eliminate lifetime premium penalties for beneficiaries who were misinformed or uninformed about Medicare enrollment rules.