For those who are not a citizen and want to become an American citizen, you will need to know the process. The truth is it is a bit complicated. Additionally, you should try to know what the country has to offer you in terms of medical services. A Columbus immigration lawyer can help you in that regard. This article will work you through the basics.

Health is important. With a healthy body, you can carry out all normal activities.  And the United States could be challenging for new citizens, depending on where you live previously. You don’t want the risk of being bed-ridden when you are just a new citizen. You want to enjoy all the medical benefits that are available to you. It would be a wise decision to consult a Columbus immigration lawyer, but this article will be a good place to start.

If you want to file Medicare benefits as a citizen of the United States you can go ahead to socialsecurity.gov. It will only take 30 minutes or less. But if you are not a citizen, you need to understand some things before you take action.

The first problem for people who want to be a citizen is how to obtain Medicare benefits and supplement their medical insurance. They know if the could do that, living in the country will be easier. The good news is that they might be enrolled in a medical service called Medicare, though the program has some criteria they must meet.

What is Medicare?

Medicare is a program organized by the government and partly funded by the country’s employers and employees through tax. There are various plans in the program which include

Hospital insurance (plan A) – this covers hospice care, inpatient stays in hospital, health care for a nursing home, health services for some homes.

Medical insurance (plan B) – This covers outpatient care, doctor’s visit and some of the services not covered in the first plan above.

Prescription Drug Coverage (plan D) – this covers health prescriptions

What to know about eligibility?

Primarily, a U.S citizen is eligible to Medicare. Those who are permanent residents of more than 65 years of age are also eligible. If you have stayed in the U.S for five consecutive years, you will be eligible. But if you take a break, say you live in the U.S for 4 years and leave for another country, you will not be eligible when you come back. Even if you live for the remaining one year, the terms say you have interrupted your stay and you are not eligible. Your stay must be around for five consecutive years long or nothing.

If you have a question, a Columbus immigration lawyer can help.

Medicare plans are not like social security benefits. Non-citizens of the country are not eligible for the service except if the person is a green card holder. After obtaining your green card, you can then apply and see if you will qualify.

For those who fall into the group of people mentioned earlier, the permanent residents who are above 65, the process of enrollment starts 3 months prior to their 65th birthday. It will last for seven months. If such a person already enrolls for social security benefit, they won’t need to take any action. By the day of their 65th birth date, they will be automatically enrolled in the plan A and Plan B of the Medicare.

How much does Medicare premium cost?

To begin with, you must purchase one or two of the plans. When you do, the plan will come with a monthly premium. Below you will find the details about the premiums of each plan so as to guide you in making a choice.

Plan A

The amount you will pay for this plan is dependent on how much you have been paying into the Medicare taxes over the years. Also, the cost will partially depend on if you will qualify for other extra benefits. Those who have been working in the United States for more than ten years and above sixty-five years old are eligible to receive the premium plan for free. The same benefit applies to other things like the Railroad Retirement Board benefits or Social Security.

So you are not among those who should earn the premium for free? Then you will pay an amount that is dependent on how much you have contributed in quarters to Medicare taxes.

The premiums for plan A

Payment not above 30 quarters in Medicare taxes – $437 per month

Payment between 30 and 39 quarters in Medicare taxes – $240 per month

Plan B

Most of the times once you pay for plan A, you will have to pay for plan B. Usually, you will pay about $135.50 per month for the standard premium of plan A. This cost will be more than that if you earn a certain amount of income. To know what you have to pay exactly as an earner of a certain amount, check the Medicare website. Finally, you can pay for plan B without paying for plan A.

Plan D

Two things will determine how much plan D will cost you: your filing status and your income. After you have paid for plan B and A, you must pay for plan D premium in addition.

What is the penalty if I enrolled late?

There is a deadline for payment for plans. Once the time elapses, you will face some penalty which varies on the type of plan you want to purchase. Your monthly plan might increase by 10% if you are buying plan A. if you are buying any of the other two, your fee might increase by a certain amount which will be over the cost as long as you are still using the plan.

Talk to a lawyer

To be eligible for the U.S citizenship, you might go through a lot of stress which can be reduced if you consult a Columbus immigration lawyer. They have the knowledge and expertise to make things easy for you. Ask those who have gotten it how hard it is to get citizenship without a lawyer. You don’t want to go through the same stress. Contact a Columbus immigration lawyer and make things easy for you.