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At the end of each year, older Ohio residents and others throughout the country receive something called a Income-Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IIRMA). It is sent by the Social Security Administration (SSA) and lets a person know how much that they will pay in Medicare premiums in the following year. In 2018, the typical retiree will pay $134 a month in Medicare Part B premiums, which are generally deducted from social security benefits.

In 2017, the typical premium for Medicare Part B was $109. The increase is likely to negate most of the 2 percent cost of living adjustment (COLA) that benefit recipients were to receive in 2018. However, the increase may be even more drastic for those who make more than $85,000 on their own or $170,000 as a married couple. They may face a minimum surcharge of $53.50 while others may pay as much as $294.60 in additional fees.

A person’s income for Medicare premium purposes could be boosted by selling a house, bonds or other property. Although individuals are allowed to appeal the increases to their premiums, most only receive a reprieve if they can show that they experienced a life-changing event. Typically, the sale of a home or portions of an investment portfolio is not considered to be a life-changing event.

While Medicare and other benefits may provide financial resources for those in retirement, it may not cover all of a person’s expenses. Therefore, it may be worthwhile to engage in long-term care planning. For some, a long-term care policy may be enough to meet their needs. Individuals may benefit from speaking to an attorney or a financial planning to learn more about health care costs and how they may impact a person as he or she advances in age.