Tricare beneficiaries must have both Medicare Part A and B to qualify for Tricare for Life. To be eligible for Tricare at all, individuals must have been a member of the Uniformed Service or the National Guard/Reserve. Those that have received the Medal of Honor are also eligible.
Family members of Medal of Honor recipients are eligible in turn, and survivors of veterans or former spouses of veterans may also be eligible for Tricare, though this eligibility varies depending on length and type of relationships and service. Individuals that have registered in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System can also receive Tricare.
Tricare for Life recipients pay a monthly premium for Medicare Part B coverage; this premium is based on income. However, there are no premiums or enrollment fees for Tricare for Life coverage.
The Tricare for Life plan works by providing insurance coverage for any services and treatment that Medicare does not cover. Recipients can visit any authorized medical service provider, and claims are first sent to Medicare. Once Medicare has paid the portion of the fees that it covers, the claim is sent to Tricare for Life. Payment is then made directly to the service provider for any additional covered services.