State agencies warn seniors of Medicare scammers

Michigan
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Now that open enrollment for Medicare has begun Oct. 15, state officials are warning seniors of potential scams and how to spot them.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services say that scammers may pose as Medicare agents or brokers selling plans.

Real agents, however, cannot make or send unsolicited calls or texts or leave voicemails. They also won’t approach you in person without you seeking your permission. No agent is allowed to say that they are from, endorsed or authorized by Medicare.

Some scammers may say that denying their offer will result in the loss of your Medicare coverage, but this is not true. While there may be a penalty for a delay in Medicare Part D enrollment, that coverage is voluntary.

Potential scammers can even go as far as falsifying caller ID information to make it look like they’re legitimate, which is called spoofing. They may also send fake advertisements in the mail.

If you or a loved one has experienced this type of scam or high-pressure tactic, contact DIFS at Michigan.gov/DIFSComplaints or by calling 877.999.6442 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to file a complaint.

If you have questions or concerns about your Medicare coverage, DIFS and MDHHS urge you to contact Medicare directly at Medicare.gov or by calling 800.633.4227.

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