TRICARE For Life is Medicare-wraparound coverage for TRICARE-eligible beneficiaries who have Medicare Part A and B. 

  • Enrollment not required
  • Available worldwide:
    • TRICARE pays after Medicare in the U.S. and U.S. Territories
    • TRICARE is the first payer in all other overseas areas

Who Can Participate?

TRICARE-eligible beneficiaries who have both Medicare Part A and B can use TRICARE For Life.

Not sure if you're eligible? Check out the Eligibility Page for details.

How it Works

You may visit any provider who accepts Medicare. >>Learn more

  • Your provider files your claims with Medicare. 
  • Medicare pays its portion and sends the claim to the TRICARE For Life claims processor. >>View what Medicare pays
  • TRICARE For Life then pays the provider directly for TRICARE-covered services. 
  • You won't receive a TRICARE wallet card, all you need is your Medicare card and military ID as proof of coverage.

You can get care at military hospitals and clinics, but only if space is available. >>Find a Military Hospital or Clinic

What You Pay

You don't pay any enrollment fees, but you must pay Medicare Part B monthly premiums. Your Part B premium is based on your income.

For more information about Part B premiums:

  • Visit the Medicare website 
  • Call Social Security at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY: 1-800-325-0778)

If you're looking for what Medicare pays for services covered by Medicare and TRICARE, check out the TRICARE For Life Cost MatrixYou'll pay nothing out of pocket for services covered by both Medicare and TRICARE.

What services does Medicare cover?

To see if your test, item, or service is covered by Medicare, visit the Medicare coverage page.

What services does TRICARE cover?

To see if your test, item, or service is covered by TRICARE, visit the Covered Services page.





Covered by TRICARE and Medicare

Medicare-authorized amount

Remaining amount


Covered by Medicare only

Medicare-authorized amount


Medicare deductible and cost-shareA percentage of the total cost of a covered health care service that you pay.

Covered by TRICARE only


TRICARE-allowable amount

TRICARE deductible and cost-share

Not covered by TRICARE or Medicare



Billed charges (which may exceed the Medicare or TRICARE-allowable amount)

TRICARE For Life Contractors

The TRICARE For Life contractors assist with claims and provide customer service to all beneficiaries using TRICARE For Life.

Is TRICARE For Life Right for You?

TRICARE For Life is the plan for you if:

  • You're eligible for TRICARE
  • You have both Medicare Part A and B

Coverage is available worldwide and you can see any provider you want. However, you'll pay more if you get care from Veteran's Administration providers or providers who opt-out of Medicare, because they're not allowed to bill Medicare. 

When retired service members and their families become eligible for TRICARE For Life, typically at 65, they are no longer able to enroll in TRICARE Prime.

>>Learn More about TRICARE and Medicare Eligibility Requirements

Want to Learn More about TRICARE For Life? 

Check out the new TRICARE For Life 101 podcast series. The new series helps retired service members or their eligible family members who will turn 65 soon understand their TRICARE For Life benefits. The series covers a number of topics, from an overview of basics, to how TFL and Medicare interact, and more! >>Learn more

Are you looking to see what tests, items, or services Medicare covers? >>Learn more.

Want to order a hard copy of the TRICARE For Life Handbook? Call Wisconsin Physicians Service (WPS) at 1-866-773-0404.

Last Updated 6/5/2018