“I received a letter from Social Security saying that I must pay more for Medicare Part B.”
You've just met IRMAA.
Since 2003, higher-income beneficiaries must pay more for Medicare Part B, medical insurance. This monthly increase in premium is known as the Income-related Monthly Adjustment Amount, IRMAA for short. This letter notifies you that Social Security has determined you are one of those higher-income beneficiaries.
Social Security uses a special modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) for IRMAA purposes. This is the total of tax-exempt interest and adjusted gross income from your income tax statement. The threshold is $85,000 for an individual filer and $170,000 for a couple. Social Security looks at the tax return two years prior to the current year. For example, Social Security reviewed 2017 tax returns to identify those who are subject to IRMAA in 2019. The additional amounts that a higher-income beneficiary pays in 2019 range from $53.50 to $294.60 for Part B.
Be aware: If you must pay more for Part B, you’ll also pay more for Part D, prescription drug coverage. The amounts in 2019 range from $12.40 to $77.40. Check out this year's adjustments for Part B and Part D.
Are you paying IRMAA needlessly? Learn what you can do if you're paying higher Medicare premiums without actually being a higher-income beneficiary.
Last updated: 02-27-2019