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Getting TRICARE for Your Child

You can get TRICARE for your child in two steps:

  1. Register your newborn or adopted child in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). You must enroll in DEERS for TRICARE coverage.
  2. Choose a TRICARE health plan and enroll your child if necessary. 

You don't need a Social Security number to register your child in DEERS. Once you have one, update DEERS with that number. >>Learn More

Health Plan Options

How you enroll your new child depends on who you are.  This includes newborns, newly adopted children, and children placed with sponsors as wards.

 

Active Duty Family Members

Stateside

Overseas

When do I need to register my child in DEERS?

  • Within 90 days of birth
  • Within 120 days of birth

What happens when I register my child in DEERS?

  • If you live in a stateside PSA, your child is automatically enrolled in TRICARE Prime
  • If not in a PSA, your childis auto-enrolled in TRICARE Select
  • You have 90 days from the day you enter your child in DEERS to change their plan, to include TRICARE Prime Remote or USFHP
  • You child shows as direct care only, meaning he or she can only get care and pharmacy services at a military hospital of clinic on a space-available basis. Your child doesn’t have access to civilian health care or retail or mail order pharmacy services
  • Your child is automatically enrolled in TRICARE Select
  • You have 90 days from the day you enter your child in DEERS to change their plan to TRICARE Overseas Program (TOP) –Prime or TOP Prime Remote, if command sponsored
  • TRICARE won’t pay on any claims starting when the child is 91 days old (121 overseas)
What if I don't register my child in DEERS?
  • You child won’t show as TRICARE eligible
  • Claims for your child deny starting when the child is 91 days old (121 overseas)
What if I register my child in DEERs, but don't enroll in a plan?
  • Your child is automatically enrolled in a plan

What if I register my child in DEERS late?

  • Your child will be automatically enrolled in TRICARE Prime or TRICARE Select when entered in DEERS. Coverage is backdated to the date of birth
  • You have 90-days from the date entered in DEERS to change to a different plan, e.g. TRICARE Prime Remote, USFHP. The new plan is backdated to the date of birth
  • You will need to askthe contractor to re-process any claims that were denied or to should be processed under the new plan
  • Your child is automatically enrolled in TRICARE Select when entered in DEERS
  • Coverage will be backdated to the date of birth
  • You have 90-days from the date entered in DEERS to change to a different plan, e.g. TOP Prime or TOP RICARE Prime Remote. The new plan is backdated to the date of birth
  • You will need toask the contractor to re-process any claims that were denied or should be processed them under the new plan

 

 

Retirees

Stateside

Overseas

When do I need to register my child in DEERS?

  • Within 90 days of birth
  • Within 120 days of birth

What happens when I register my child in DEERS?

  • Your child isn’t automatically enrolled in a TRICARE plan
  • You have 90 days from the date of your child’s birth to enroll him or her in a plan (Prime, Select, or USFHP where available
  • Claims for your child deny starting when the child is 91 days old (121 overseas)
What if I don't register my child in DEERS?
  • You child won’t show as TRICARE eligible and won’t have access to military or civilian health care
  • Claims for your child deny starting when the child is 91 days old (121 overseas)
What if I register my child in DEERS, but don't enroll in a plan?
  • You child shows as direct care only, meaning he or she can only get care and pharmacy services at a military hospital of clinic on a space-available basis. Your child doesn’t have access to civilian health care or retail or mail order pharmacy services
  • TRICARE won’t pay on any claims starting when the child is 91 days old (121 overseas)

What if I register my child in DEERS late?

  • For 2018 only:
    • You child will be direct care only when entered in DEERS.
    • You need to enroll your child in a TRICARE plan as soon as possible
    • Coverage won’t be backdated. You are responsible for all costs from day 91 (121 overseas) until you child is enrolled in a plan
  • Starting in 2019:
    • Your child is eligible for direct care only when entered in DEERS
    • You will need to wait for the open enrollment season or another qualifying life event to enroll your child in a plan
    • Coverage won’t be backdated. You will be responsible for all costs from day 91 (121 overseas) until your child gets enrolled

You need to register your child in DEERS within one year (365 days) of his or her birth or adoption.  On day 366, your child won’t be able to receive benefits until you register them in DEERS.

Last Updated 3/22/2018

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