by Cheryl Pruss
I am a first-time user of SERMA reimbursements, although I retired almost 17 years ago. I began the process of looking into the requirements for reimbursement and had one year’s worth of Medicare B reimbursement (for two people) deposited directly into my checking account only 13 days later! Here’s how I did it.
First, there are unique receipt requirements for reimbursement. My strategy was to first understand the receipt requirements and then find out how to get a receipt that would work. My assumption was that if I could get a good receipt, I could sail through reimbursement from SERMA. Since I was applying in 2017 (before the 3/31/17 deadline) for the whole year of 2016, I needed a receipt that had specific information included. I called the Social Security department (you sign up for Medicare through the Social Security office) and was connected to the correct department to get the documentation. I told them that I was a retiree of a company that reimburses me for medical premiums. I needed a document that shows specific information:
- What month the coverage started.
- Record of payment for every month through the end of the year.
- Plus a few other specific bits of information.
I received the document through mail, six days after I made my initial call.
The only complication in the “getting your receipt together process” is that I have three types of healthcare premiums: Medicare Part B, Medicare Part D, and a Supplemental Plan. Social Security was able to forward me to another department for the Plan D documentation – the process to get the documentation was a little more complicated and I haven’t yet received the receipt from them in the mail (it’s been 15 days since I made my initial call). My supplemental plan responded with their document 14 days after my initial call and that claim has now been submitted.
If you can afford to get your reimbursements once a year, I recommend this process. There is minimal work involved:
- Educating yourself on the requirements of the receipt.
- Calling Social Security and perhaps your supplemental plan carrier.
- Using the MyHealth Benefits website and setting up direct deposit.
I found that this worked perfectly for me. It was intuitive to use and gave fast updates on the status of my claim. The best part was I only had to file one time for reimbursement for the entire year. Yes!