Monthly Premium of $99.90 Begins in January

OCTOBER 28, 2011: The federal government has announced that the standard Medicare Part B premium for 2012 will be $99.90 per month. Under the Medicare program, eligible retirees are responsible for 25% of the total cost of Part B, with the federal government subsidizing the remaining 75%.

Thursday’s announcement, which came nearly three-weeks earlier than anticipated, is good news to many observers who expected premiums to rise even higher in 2012. For those members still paying $96.40 per month, the 2012 increase will be the first since 2009. Due to the lack of Social Security COLAs in 2010 and 2011, the Medicare Part B premium had remained unchanged for those retirees already enrolled in the program and receiving a Social Security check.

With the announcement of a CPI of 3.6%, Social Security recipients will again receive a COLA in 2012. This will also unify the Medicare program, with those retirees eligible for the standard Part B premium now paying the same monthly rate of $99.90. Medicare eligible retirees with individual adjusted gross incomes above $85,000 (or a $170,000 for joint filers) pay a higher monthly premium based on income eligibility (passed in 2006, by President George W. Bush, as part of Medicare Reform Act).

Click here for further information on Part B premium amounts for persons with higher income levels.