Products To Sell During Medicare Lock-In Period

When the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period comes around, you know that commissions are about to come your way! You will be helping Medicare clients change plans, add Medicare Supplement Plans, and do everything in between. But what happens when the AEP is over? There are other ways to keep earning a commission after it is over, mainly by selling other products throughout the year (lock-in period).

Medicare Supplement Plans

illustration of a man looking at a long bill
Medicare Supplement Plans can be sold at any time, and they help cover Medicare costs, which is valuable to many.

Medicare Supplement Plans are great because you can sell them all year round. Thousands of people turn 65 every day, and each of them has the opportunity to look into Medicare Supplement Plans after enrolling in Medicare. But that is not the only time they can sign up for a Medicare Supplement Plan: technically a senior can apply for a plan anytime, even during the lock-in period, as long as they are enrolled in Medicare Parts A and B. Some seniors will look into changing Medicare Supplement Plans within 30 days of enrolling in a plan, also known as their “free look period.” Or some will want to change their Medicare Supplement Plans anytime during the year to find a more affordable plan. And the great thing about selling Medicare Supplement Plans? You will make residual commissions on them for years.

Dental, Vision & Hearing Plans

Original Medicare and Medicare Supplement Plans do not offer dental, vision or hearing insurance. These plans are the perfect products to cross-sell to your clients because no underwriting is necessary for them, and they are typically inexpensive. You can help your customers find a plan that offers them the extra coverage they need at a very attractive price.

Long-Term Care Insurance

Many Medicare beneficiaries are under the impression that long-term care, such as stays in nursing homes or assisted living facilities, is covered by Original Medicare. Unfortunately, this is not the case, so when selling Medicare products, it is important to note to your clients that long-term care is generally not covered. While Medicare does cover certain things that are deemed medically necessary by a doctor, for the most part, it will not cover costs for people who need custodial care (including non-medical needs such as eating and bathing). This is a great opportunity to suggest long-term care insurance, and if they will not qualify for it, suggest a short-term care insurance plan instead.

Hospital Indemnity Insurancewoman sitting in a hospital bed with an IV in her arm

Hospital indemnity insurance is a supplemental insurance plan that will help pay for hospital admission costs that are not covered by other insurance. Some of these plans offer cash payments to help pay for any extra expenses accrued during hospital stays, as well as deductibles, observation stays, surgeries, medications and more. These plans are beneficial for people with Medicare Advantage Plans, which can sometimes leave beneficiaries with large bills from hospital stays.

Working with Medicare leads is a great way to make an income, but you do not have to solely rely on the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period to thrive. Some insurance agents bank on getting most of their commissions during the Medicare Annual Enrollment Period, but that is only 54 days out of the year. There are so many different ways you can continue to earn commissions during the lock-in period. Seniors need coverage for dental, vision and hearing, help with some hospital costs, and coverage for long-term care if they have a chronic condition that worsens, all which Original Medicare does not cover. If you consider selling (or cross-selling) the insurance plans mentioned, then you can continue to help seniors and grow your business outside of the Medicare AEP!

Do’s and Don’ts Of Medicare Compliance

Before you can begin selling Medicare, you must first get your license to sell Medicare products, followed by certifications from carriers to sell Medicare Supplement Plans. But after all that, there is still one more thing to be aware of before you’re ready to sell. You need to know how to remain compliant with all the rules surrounding Medicare sales. In order to show your commitment to honesty and integrity, as well as to fulfill your legal duty and contractual obligations to sell Medicare, you have to be compliant with the following rules in all of your interactions with customers. Here are some simple do’s and don’ts to help you stay in compliance.

Medicare Compliance For Selling

When Selling Medicare:

DO:

caucasian man with a white button up sitting down filling out a form
Before contacting a lead, make sure to fill out a Scope of Appointment.
  • Make sure that you have Permission To Contact the prospect. Agents are not allowed to make unsolicited phone calls or send emails to prospects without having an opt-out option. In order to obtain permission to contact, you must use a lead provider like Benepath, who will have prospects/leads sign a form that says they agree to be contacted by an agent.
  • Complete a Scope Of Appointment form before each face-to-face appointment and/or one-on-one phone conversation. These forms outline exactly what you’ll be talking about with your client during a meeting. Per CMS, you must keep these forms on file for at least 10 years, even if your conversation did not end in a sale.
  • Report any suspected violations to the Medicare Compliance Hotline toll-free at 1-877-211-2290.

DON’T:

  • Engage in door-to-door marketing or sales
  • Use high pressure sales tactics
  • Engage in outbound telemarketing or email campaigns
  • Discuss with prospects any products that are not specified in their Scope of Appointment form
  • Engage in any discriminatory activities, such as conditional enrollment based on a prospect’s mental illness, physical illness, or disability

Medicare Compliance For Marketing

CMS also has regulations in place for marketing, educational events and sales event presentations.

DO:

illustration of a man in a suit talking to a group of people sitting down.
When marketing, you can distribute educational materials at an event that are not plan-specific as well as your business cards.
  • Wait until October 1 to begin marketing next year’s plans to potential customers
  • Distribute educational materials that are free of plan-specific information
  • Give out your business card and contact info
  • Collect Scope of Appointment forms
  • Hold your event in a public venue

DON’T:

  • Attempt to mislead your clients, willingly or unwillingly
  • Use the word free to describe $0 premiums
  • Serve meals at sales events
  • Pressure attendees at events to complete a sign in, it must be optional
  • Distribute plan-specific materials at an educational event (only do this at sales events)
  • Discuss any carrier-specific plans or benefits at educational events (only do this at sales events)
  • Cross-sell or promote health-related products at events

It is important that you follow these rules for Medicare compliance set by CMS, or you risk violations, and you may lose your ability to sell Medicare if you are reported. If you are looking for leads that have given permission to contact, Benepath will provide these leads exclusively to you. We give you exclusive real-time leads when you want them. To find out more information, call 866-368-0377.

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