By Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. of Hanlon Niemann & Wright, a Freehold, NJ Elder Care Attorney

In an effort to prevent or at least reduce Medicare fraud (as we are aware is subject to considerable fraud), the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) has redesigned Medicare cards. The cards will no longer contain a Social Security number, gender, signature and other personal information, all of which could compromise the Medicare beneficiary’s identity.

The new cards have an 11 character, randomly assigned number not connected to the beneficiary’s other personal data. All current beneficiaries are scheduled to get their new cards no later than December, 2019. In New Jersey and New York residents will receive their new cards beginning after June, 2018.

To be proactive, beneficiaries may wish to confirm that the Social Security Administration has their correct address. An address change should be made by contacting the Social Security Administration at ssa.gov/myaccount or by calling 800-772-1213.

And of course, Medicare beneficiaries should also be aware of scammers who are trying to defraud them by contacting them directly about their replacement cards. A CMS employee never call and ask for your personal and private information recipients. There also is no fee or charge for the new card. If you experience differently, these are quick tipoffs that you are dealing with a scammer.

To discuss your NJ Elder Care matter, please contact Fredrick P. Niemann, Esq. toll-free at (855) 376-5291 or email him at fniemann@hnlawfirm.com.  Please ask us about our video conferencing consultations if you are unable to come to our office.