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Medicare is health insurance for people 65 or older, certain people under 65 with disabilities, and people of any age with End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD).

As a green card holder your first chance to get Medicare usually starts 3 months before you turn 65 and ends 3 months after you turn 65. Any individual who applies for Medicare will need to show at least 40 Social Security/Medicare credits that were earned in the United States. In most cases 40 credits equates to 10 years of work in the United States.   

Additionally, to get Medicare Part B a green card holder will need to meet a 5-year permanent residency requirement immediately prior to applying for Medicare. A green card holder must continuously physically reside in the United States to meet this requirement. The period officially starts when a green card holder is admitted into the US as a legal permanent resident.

Medicare is an earned benefit and therefore does not count towards the public charge rules. USCIS has listed Medicare as a benefit that it does not consider in the public charge inadmissibility determination.

If you are an immigrant with an immigration question, please contact our office.

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