Refund on Medicare?

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Q. I am a retired disabled military member who works in the federal government. Since I am retired, I did not opt for any of the Federal Employees Health Benefits, as I am covered through Tricare as well as the Veterans Affairs Department. So, why is it that I must pay into Medicare when I am presently covered by another form of medical coverage? What can I do to stop this $2,247.18 annual deduction? Since I am covered as a vet under VA, I don’t need additional medical coverage. This is not right. How do I get my money back?

I’ve been paying into this since 2005 as a federal employee, having spent the previous 20 in the military. Since retiring eight years ago, I have been receiving Medicare care as a disabled vet through VA, and my family is covered through Tricare, which I pay monthly through payroll deduction. So where is my $2,247.18 going every year? What is the government doing with my earnings? Are there any provisions to cease this from happening?

A. By law, nearly all employees are required to have Medicare deductions taken from their pay. There is no circumstance under which you can receive a refund of those contributions, whether or not you ever use the benefits. For information about Medicare and the limited exceptions under which certain organizations are exempt, go to www.ssa.gov/slge/mand_med_cov.htm.

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Reg Jones was head of retirement and insurance policy at the Office of Personnel Management. Email your retirement-related questions to fedexperts@federaltimes.com.

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