2019 Medicare Part B Premiums for New Enrollees

Medicare Part B Premiums
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If you enrolled in Medicare Part B in 2019, your standard monthly premium is $135.50 if 1) your 2017 modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) was $85,000 or less and you file individually or 2) your MAGI was $170,000 or less and you file jointly. The standard monthly premium rose $1.50 from 2018.

2019 Medicare Part B Standard Monthly Premium Income Thresholds

Since 2007, those who have higher incomes have paid more for their Medicare Part B premiums, based on their income tax filing two years prior. The schedule below gives all standard premium amounts for those who enrolled in Medicare Part B in 2019.

A new, highest income bracket was added for 2019. In 2018, the highest bracket was greater than $160,000 for individual filers, greater than $320,000 for joint filers, and greater than $85,000 for separate filers who were married and lived together at any time during the year.

For Those Filing Individually

If your 2017 MAGI was: Your 2019 monthly premium is: In 2018, it would have been:
Less than $85,000 $135.50 $134.00
$85,001 to $107,000 $189.60 $187.50
$107,001 to $133,500 $270.90 $267.90
$133,501 to $160,000 $352.20 $348.30
$160,001 to $499,999 $433.40 $428.60
$500,000 or more $460.50 $428.80

For Those Who Are Married and Filing Jointly

If your 2017 MAGI was: Your 2019 monthly premium is: In 2018, it would have been:
$170,000 or less $135.50 $134.00
$170,001 to $214,000 $189.60 $187.50
$214,001 to $267,000 $270.90 $267.90
$267,001 to $320,000 $352.20 $348.30
$320,001 to $749,999 $433.40 $428.60
$750,000 or more $460.50 $428.60

For Those Who Are Married and Lived Together at Any Time During the Year and Are Filing Separately

If your 2017 MAGI was: Your 2019 monthly premium is: In 2018, it would have been:
$85,000 or less $135.50 $134.00
$85,001 to $414,999 $433.40 $428.60
$415,000 or more $460.50 $428.60

How MAGI Is Determined

The Internal Revenue Service supplies your tax filing status, your adjusted gross income (AGI), and your tax-exempt interest income to the Social Security Administration (SSA). When the SSA reviews your benefits application, it will add your AGI to your tax-exempt interest income to determine your MAGI.

If you sold a home or business or received a large bonus, it may have boosted your income in the two-years-prior tax year and resulted in increased Medicare Part B premiums. You can appeal the decision if your income has subsequently gone down for certain reasons, such as retirement, death of a spouse, loss of a pension, or divorce, or if you filed an amended tax return.

Actual Premiums vs. Standard Premiums

Medicare Part B participants may pay less than the standard premium amount because of the "hold harmless" provision (HHP) that prevents your Social Security benefits from declining from the previous year. Because most people have their Medicare premiums deducted from their Social Security checks, it would be possible for benefits to go down when premiums go up. In years when the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) that was added to Social Security benefits is insufficient to offset the standard increase in premiums, the premium increase is limited to the increase in the COLA by the HHP.

For example, in 2017, the standard premium rose 10% to $134 a month from $121.80, while the COLA rose only 0.3%, or a little more than $4 a month on average. Consequently, the actual average premium (AAP) paid for Medicare Part B was about $109 a month that year, compared with an AAP of $104.90 in 2016.

The HHP doesn't apply to those who just signed up for Medicare, haven't yet started receiving Social Security benefits, or have incomes that put them in one of the higher brackets and so pay higher premiums.

Part B Deductible and Charges

The deductible for Medicare Part B in 2019 is $185. Once you've paid that amount, you will typically be charged 20% of the Medicare-approved amount for doctor services, including those for inpatient hospital care; outpatient therapy; and durable medical equipment. You usually aren't changed anything for services that are considered preventive in nature.