Tricare Help

Can brother be covered under soldier’s sponsorship?

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My husband is an active-duty soldier. He and his brother recently lost their mother and the brother lost the health insurance coverage he had under his mother’s sponsorship. Can we add his brother – 23 years old, deaf, and working – to our Tricare Standard?

The chances are virtually nil that your husband could have his brother added to his Tricare coverage; siblings are generally not eligible for Tricare. The only way that could happen is if your husband became his brother’s legal guardian, and even then the chances are remote, particularly in this case, since you indicate that your brother-in-law is an adult and is self-supporting.

Tricare itself does not make eligibility determinations; only the military services may do that. The mechanism they use is the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System, the Defense Department’s eligibility portal for Tricare. You can engage with DEERS by visiting the ID Card/DEERS office on any military installation or by calling the main DEERS support office toll-free at 800-538-9552. But again, I don’t think you should get your hopes up.

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Can teen sister be covered as dependent?

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My husband is currently on active duty in the Air Force. I have an 18-year-old sister with a newborn baby who is moving in with us. She is still in high school. Our mother is disabled and unable to care for her and her child. Could my sister get Tricare coverage as our dependent?

Siblings generally are not eligible for Tricare. The only way that could happen is if you and your husband were to become the legal guardians of your sister and her baby, and even then, the possibility of Tricare coverage is unlikely. However, Tricare itself does not make these kinds of eligibility determinations; only the military services can do that.

Your husband should inquire about this through the personnel section of his unit. You may also want to call the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System support office at 1-800-538-9552. DEERS is the Defense Department’s eligibility portal for Tricare, and that office may be able to guide you further.

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Will Tricare cover my sister?

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I am currently on active duty in the Army. Is it possible to put my sister on my Tricare? She lives with me, is 18 years old and currently still in high school.

Siblings are not among the family members eligible for Tricare benefits.

Editor’s note, June 7, 2012: An earlier version of this post stated that parents also are not eligible for Tricare. Dependent parents and parents-in-law of Tricare sponsors are eligible for Tricare Plus, a program that may offer primary care through local military treatment facilities if space and resources are available. Dependent parents and parents-in-law are not eligible for Tricare Prime, Standard or Extra; Tricare for Life; Tricare Reserve Select; or Tricare Retired Reserve.

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Can 18-year-old sister get Tricare as dependent?

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I have a sister-in-law who is 18 and is about to move to our duty station to live with us to attend college. Can my husband, who is active-duty military, claim her as a dependent if she is a full-time student?

No, I’m sorry, but a dependent sister-in-law cannot become eligible for Tricare. You can confirm that fact by calling the DEERS Support Office, toll-free, at 1-800-538-9552.