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Medicare – Surcharge for 2019

by Carla Griffin on December 28, 2018

Annual 2019 Medicare B Premiums $1,626 to $5,526

In 2019, Medicare recipients will see a change in their Medicare premium.  Most Medicare beneficiaries will pay $135.50 per month for their Medicare B premium.  However, if you have high income, you will pay a higher Medicare B premium.  High income is defined as adjusted gross income plus tax-exempt interest income of more than $85,000 if single or $170,000 if married filing jointly.

Medicare B premiums for 2019

Single tax                       Joint tax                            Medicare B   

   return income              return income                    Premium       

Up to $85,000                 Up to $170,000                  $135.50         

$ 85,001 – $107,000       $170,001 — $214,000        $189.60        

$107,001 – $133,500      $214,001 — $267,000        $270.90          

$133,501 — $160,000      $267,001 — $320,000        $352.20         

$160,001 — $499,999      $320,001 – $749,999        $433.40         

$500,000 or more            $750,000 or more              $460.50  

This means a single individual with $85,000 or less of income will pay $1,626 for the year 2019 for Medicare B.  If that individual earned $160,001, he or she will pay an additional $3,575 for a total $5,201 for the year 2019 for Medicare B.  Income of $500,000 will be $5,526.

Remember that Medicare premiums are for each individual on Medicare.  Consequently, a married couple with income of $170,000 or less will pay Medicare B premiums of $3,252 for the year 2019.  If that same couple earns $320,001, their annual Medicare B premium will increase by $7,150 for a total of $10,402.       

The high-income surcharge is an annual calculation based on your gross income from two years previously.  Therefore, your surcharge for 2019 is based on your 2017 income tax return.  This means if you had unusually high income in 2017 because of, for example, stock gains, you will now be paying higher Medicare premiums in 2019.  If in 2018 your income then decreased from 2017, your Medicare premium will decrease in 2020. 

You can appeal the surcharge if your income has substantially decreased since 2017 because of certain life changing events.  Examples include the following: getting married or divorced or becoming widowed; you or your spouse retire or reduce your work hours; you lose your pension income; or you lose income-producing property due to a disaster.  Social Security Form SSA-44 is used to request a recalculation.

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