If an individual gets benefits from Social Security or the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB), they automatically get Part A starting the first day of the month they turn age 65.
Individuals under age 65 and disabled automatically get Part A once disability benefits from Social Security have begun.
If an individual at age of 64 is not getting Social Security or RRB benefits (for instance, because they are still working), it is necessary to sign up for Part A by contacting Social Security 3 months prior to turning 65.
Anyone who is eligible for Part A and does not have other insurance will pay a higher premium if they do not buy Part A when first eligible to enroll.
Initial Enrollment Period: 3 months prior to and 3 months after turning age 65, and the month of the 65th birthday, for a total period of 7 months.
General Enrollment Period for those who did not enroll during the initial enrollment period: January 1–March 31 each year; coverage will begin July 1. There may be a higher premium for late enrollment.
Special Enrollment Period: for individuals or their spouses (or family member if the beneficiary is disabled) who are currently working, and are covered by a group health plan through the employer or union occurs during the 8 month period after work or health insurance coverage ends.