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How to handle Retroactive Medicare entitlement
Retroactive Medicare Entitlement
The time for filing a claim will be extended if CMS or one of its contractors determines that a failure to meet the filing deadline is caused by all of the following conditions:
(a) At the time the service was furnished the beneficiary was not entitled to Medicare.
(b) The beneficiary subsequently received notification of Medicare entitlement effective retroactively to or before the date of the furnished service.
Thus, a provider or supplier may have furnished services to an individual who was not entitled to Medicare. More than a year later, the individual receives notification from SSA that he or she is entitled to Medicare benefits retroactive to or before the date he or she received services from the provider or supplier. In this situation, the provider or supplier may submit a request for a filing extension to the appropriate Medicare claims processing contractor, as long as the provider or supplier submits supporting documentation that verifies that the conditions above are met.
If the beneficiary and the provider or supplier is notified on different days about the beneficiary’s retroactive Medicare entitlement, there will be two extensions of time triggers. One extension of time trigger is when the beneficiary is first notified about the beneficiary’s retroactive Medicare entitlement and the other extension of time trigger is when the provider or supplier is the first party notified of the beneficiary’s retroactive Medicare entitlement. If the beneficiary is submitting the claim, the time to file the claim is based on the day the beneficiary is first notified of the retroactive Medicare entitlement. If the provider or supplier is submitting the claim, the time to file the claim is based on the day the provider or supplier is first notified of the retroactive Medicare entitlement.
Where retroactive Medicare entitlement is alleged, the provider, supplier, or beneficiary will need to provide the contractor with the following information:
• an official Social Security Administration (SSA) letter notifying the beneficiary of Medicare entitlement and the effective date of the entitlement; and,
• documentation describing the service/s furnished to the beneficiary and the date of the furnished service/s.
If the provider, supplier, or beneficiary is unable to provide the contractor with an official SSA letter, the Medicare contractor shall check the Common Working File (CWF) database and may interpret the CWF date of accretion and the CWF Medicare entitlement date for a beneficiary in order to verify a beneficiary’s retroactive entitlement. For example, if the CWF indicates a Medicare entitlement date of March 1, 2008 and a date of accretion of December 14, 2010, then the contractor may interpret the CWF data to mean that the beneficiary was retroactively entitled to Medicare as of March 1, 2008 and that this data was added to the CWF database on December 14, 2010. If the contractor has any problems or concerns with respect to interpreting the CWF data, then the contractor should consult with the appropriate CMS regional office.
If the contractor determines that both of the conditions for meeting this exception described above are met, the time to file a claim will be extended through the last day of the 6th calendar month following the month in which either the beneficiary or the provider or supplier received notification of Medicare entitlement effective retroactively to or before the date of the furnished service.
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