ST. CHARLES COUNTY, Mo. – It is a Medicare misery for a St. Charles County family.
Victor Tinsley from St. Peters missed the deadline to sign up for Medicare. His mother in England got terminally ill, and he and his wife Tawanda had to travel there to take care of her.
When Tinsley got back to the United States, he was told there would be a $280 penalty for life and the money would be taken out of his social security check. He couldn’t believe it.
“They say it’s a lifetime penalty, says it’s not our problem you have to talk to Medicare,” Tinsley said. “When I talk to Medicare, they say it’s not our problem you have to talk to Social Security, and that’s the loop I’ve been in four years now trying to get this taken care of.”
He decided to appeal the decision and won what the judge called a partial victory.
The judge decided he would have to pay the penalty for six months but not for life, and he should be reimbursed for everything he had paid over six months during the four years he has been fighting the case.
However, Tinsley said he received another letter, this one from Medicare. It said the first hearing was a mistake and that it was heard by the wrong agency. He would have to start the appeal process from scratch.
Meanwhile, the penalty would continue to be taken out of his social security check.
FOX 2 reached out to the office of US representative Blaine Luetkemeyer. His spokesperson sent a statement saying they contacted Tinsley and would do whatever they could to help him.
Meanwhile, for Tinsley, it’s an unbelievable mess.
“Well, I’m disgusted. This is bureaucracy at its worst,” he said. “The left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing, no one wants to take responsibility.”