ANDY'S CONSUMER TIP OF THE DAY: open enrollment scams
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - December 15 is looming.
It's the deadline for open enrollment in your employer's health plan, an Affordable Care Act (ACA) plan, Medicare or private insurance -- and scam artists are counting the days.
The Federal Trade Commission issued a warning about scammers posing as administrators or salespeople for health plans. The agency broke the warning down by type of plan:
* If you're eligible for Medicare:
- Anyone that tries to sell you Medicare insurance while claiming to be an “official Medicare agent” is a scammer. There are no Medicare sales representatives.
- The Medicare prescription drug plan (also known as Part D) is voluntary. Ignore anyone who calls saying you must join their prescription plan or you will lose your Medicare coverage.
- Do not give any information over the phone to someone who tells you that you must provide information to keep your coverage.
- If you need help with Medicare, call 1-800-MEDICARE or go to Medicare.gov.
* If you're looking for a plan under the ACA:
- Only shop for coverage at HealthCare.gov. People who try to sign you up elsewhere may be scammers.
- Need free assistance? There are people and groups in your community who can help you find coverage and enroll in a plan. To make sure they are legitimate, click here for HealthCare.gov's local help search engine.
* If you're shopping private insurance plans:
- Make sure insurance is what you’re really getting. There are many medical discount plans that pretend to be insurance, but they are not. Your state insurance department or commissioner can tell you if a plan is insurance or not and whether the seller is licensed in your state.
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