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By Stephanie Coutavas

So many of my clients have expressed their frustration and confusion when trying to sort through the masses of information around and about Medicare and Medicare Supplement Plans.

This article is not going to clear up all of that confusion. However you will find some very helpful information about accessing assistance in your quest for information and some hazards you will want to sidestep.

You do not have to "go it alone." There are many reputable insurance professionals that are ready and able to help you. How do you find a good one? Some tips to help you determine if you are dealing with one:


1) You will want to make sure that you are dealing with an independent agent or broker. This type of agent does not work for just one carrier. They are not limited to talking to you about just one company's options. The independent agent forms relationships with multiple carriers. This enables him/her to fit the solution to you rather than try to you into the limited options they have the ability to offer. There is the added worry that the agent will lose the connection with that one company and then no longer have the resources to provide service to you or your policy.


2) If your agent doesn't start out by finding out some key things about you and your lifestyle, he/she is just not doing a good job for you. Questions like: How much traveling to intend to do? How is your health? What is your budget? Are you comfortable with sharing some of the cost for your medical expenses or do you want total coverage? The answers to all of these questions are key if the agent is going to recommend the right plan for you.


3) Does the agent specialize in Medicare specifically? The world of insurance is extremely diverse. Look for an agent who specializes in Medicare. Someone who is up to date on the laws and the changes is going to be able to advise you. It is wise to avoid a "jack of all trades" when it comes to Medicare. There is a lot to know about any genre of insurance.You are better with someone focused on the segment that you are dealing with.


4) How long has the agent been in business? Each year thousands of people get into the insurance business. Each year the vast majority of those new agents leave the insurance business. Work with an agent who has established longevity in the industry and demonstrated a commitment to it. Avoid brand new agents. This will ensure that your agent will be there down the line for customer service.


5) Does the agent present the information in a way that is clear and understandable? This would seem almost too basic to mention, but it is key. A competent, caring agent should be able to clear up the confusion for you. If an agent does their job properly, you will feel confident that you understand your options and that you have made the right choice for your circumstances. Avoid agents that use "insurance speak" terms and phrases that only insurance people would know.


6) Ask yourself if it seems like the agent trying to help you or themselves. All insurance professionals are in business to make a living. It is the ethical insurance professionals who live by the fact that it is only by taking care of the customer, that you take care of yourself.


Help is available. Just take a deep breath, remember these points and you will find the right person to help you understand your Medicare and Medicare Supplement Plan options.


Let us help. Don't tackle medicare alone. For the latest information about Medicare or to compare Medicare Supplement Plan options and rates in your area, call 888-347-5552 or visit

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