Attorney General John Kroger warns Oregon seniors and other Medicare recipients not to provide personal information to anyone calling about the Medicare $250 rebate check.
The Affordable Care Act passed by Congress and signed by President Obama earlier this year contains some important benefits for Medicare recipients. Beginning June 10, 2010, many Medicare recipients will receive a one-time, tax-free $250 rebate check. Those who qualify for the tax-free $250 rebate will automatically receive their check, no additional information or actions are required to receive the rebate.
Most Medicare drug plans have a coverage gap. Medicare recipients on expensive or numerous drugs can find themselves paying the full cost of their prescription out-of-pocket while in the coverage gap. The term “donut hole” refers to the coverage gap under Plan D, where Medicare stops paying pharmaceutical coverage at $2,830 before it starts paying again at $4,550. The one-time $250 tax-free rebate check for folks that enter the “donut hole” is the federal government’s first step toward closing the Medicare prescription drug coverage gap.
Scam artists are already trying profit by spreading misinformation about the $250 rebate checks. To avoid falling for the scam, Attorney General John Kroger offers the following advice:
- Do not give out personal information to anyone calling about the $250 rebate check.
- Unless a Medicare beneficiary is already receiving Medicare Extra Help, anybody with Medicare prescription drug coverage is automatically eligible for the one-time $250 rebate check.
- The check will automatically be sent to qualifying recipients.
- Recipients do not need to provide any personal information like their Medicare, Social Security, or bank account number to receive the rebate check.
- There are no additional forms to fill out.
- The rebate is tax-free.
- Medicare recipients can make sure the government has their correct home address by calling Social Security at 1-800-772-1213.
For more information, or to report a scam artist, call 1-800-MEDICARE. Additionally, the Attorney General’s Consumer Hotline can help people with rebate check questions at 1-877-877-9392.