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3 Things Permanent Residents Need to Know About Medicare in the USA

Those who are permanent residents of the United States and hold a green card may wonder if they are eligible for Medicare once they reach age 65. Those who have been issued a green card in the United States may do so because they have a job here, have had asylum granted, or have traveled here to live with a close family member. There may also be other situations that qualify a citizen from another country permanent residency in the United States and can be investigated by the Citizens and Immigration Services.

Medicare Part A and Part B for Permanent Residents:

Most people qualify for Medicare health benefits at age 65, but other residents may qualify because of certain illness or disabilities, or a spouse’s work history. After a permanent resident meets Medicare residency requirements he or she would be eligible for health benefits under the same rules as any United States citizen.

  1. Medicare Part A is generally premium-free IF you have accumulated 40 quarters, which is 10 taxable years, of work history. The quarters do not have to be consecutive, but you do need to have the 40 to receive you Part A benefits premium free. Some permanent residents may qualify for Original Medicare under their spouse’s work history.
  2. If you or your spouse do not have the work history to qualify to get Part A premium-free, there will be a premium amount you will be required to pay in order for you to receive those benefits. The exact amount of your premium will depend on the number of quarters that have been worked in the United States.
  3. Everybody will pay a premium for Medicare Part B, and this does not change for permanent residents. Some people who have low incomes may qualify for assistance with their Part B premiums. However, those with higher incomes may pay a higher premium for Part B than the standard premium amount of $134 a month for the year 2017. The amount you will have to pay for your Part B premium will have nothing to do with whether you are a natural-born citizen or a permanent resident of the United States.

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