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Sponsor Dies

TRICARE continues to provide coverage for family members when their sponsor dies. Your plan and costs depend on:

  • Your sponsor's military status when he or she died
  • If you're a spouse or child

Spouses can keep TRICARE unless they remarry. You can find your situation below.

Survivors of Active Duty Service Members*

If you are a survivor of an active duty service member, you can keep TRICARE as an active duty family member for three years. This means that health plan options and costs won't change during that period.

After three years:

  • Surviving spouse coverage changes to be the same as retired family members
  • Children stay covered as active duty family members until they age out, marry or other reasons. >>Learn More

*Includes activated National Guard/Reserve members

Survivors of Non-Activated National Guard/Reserve Members

If you are a survivor of a non-activated National Guard or Reserve member, you may only get TRICARE if your sponsor had TRICARE Reserve Select or the Transitional Assistance Management Program when he or she died.

Survivors of Retired Service Members

If you are a survivor of a retired service member, you can keep TRICARE with the same health plan and costs. >>Learn More

Survivors of Retired National Guard or Reserve Members

If you are a survivor of a retired National Guard or Reserve member, you may be able to get TRICARE if your sponsor had TRICARE Retired Reserve when he or she died.

Surviving Adult Children Who May Qualify for TRICARE Young Adult

If you are a surviving adult child, you may qualify for TRICARE Young Adult. If your sponsor dies before you enroll in TRICARE Young Adult, you may be able to purchase it:

  • when you turn 21, or 23 if you’re a full-time student
  • If you aren't married
  • If you don’t have your own employer-sponsored health insurance
  • If your sponsor had TRICARE when he or she died:
    • Active duty or retired TRICARE benefits
    • Transitional Assistance Management Program
    • TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS)*
    • TRICARE Retired Reserve (TRR)*

* You can’t get TRICARE Young Adult if your Reserve sponsor was eligible for TRS or TRR, but didn’t purchase it. >>Learn More

Did your active duty sponsor die before October 7, 2001?

Surviving children are eligible for TRICARE, just not with the same coverage as active duty family members. Instead, children have the same health plan options and costs as retired family members.

Last Updated 10/8/2014

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