Medicare Part A


Q. As a police officer, I was disabled in the line of duty. I retired on disability pension after 21 years. The pension falls under the Windfall Elimination Provision. I do not have 40 quarters of Social Security. Am I entitled to Medicare Part A?

A. No, you aren’t. However, you can obtain Part A coverage, usually at age 62, by paying the premiums. To give you an idea of what it would cost, in 2016 it’s $411 and in 2017 it will be $413. To learn how to apply for Part A, go to


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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


  1. Elaine Lumsden on

    Being eligible for social security is not the only basis for being eligible for Medicare. Federal employees under CSRS have been mandated to pay Medicare taxes since 1983 thus making them eligible for Medicare parts A and B. If you are not eligible for social security benefits you should still contact the SSA three months prior to turning age 65 to apply for your Medicare benefits.

  2. My disability pension as a police officer was in the line of duty… Even though I do not have 40 quarters does section 218 exemption for police officers and firefighters apply?

    Secondly if I don’t qualify for part A can I keep my same insurance which I have had thru the police department since 1972

    • @Frank Maye: You may want to call Social Security and ask. I am not sure you are a retired Federal employee from your post. If you were a Fed, were you CSRS or FERS?? The WEP affects many people: police, teachers, firefighters, state employees, including CSRS Feds. It affects anyone who has paid into a system where they did not pay into Social Security. However, if you don’t have 40 quarters paying into SS, there is no WEP offset to your SS involved because you won’t get SS at all.

      I suggest you ask SS about your Medicare coverage. They can tell you. Or create a “My Social Security” account on their website, and you will be able to pull up your covered earnings, including showing those paid into Medicare.

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