[HEALTH.MIL] TRICARE Beneficiaries Must Attest to Health Care Coverage (for Tax Purposes)

  • From: HEALTH.MIL@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • To: <HEALTH.MIL@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 15 Jan 2015 20:53:16 -0600

TRICARE Patients Must Attest to Health Care Coverage

By Terri Moon Cronk
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, Jan. 15, 2015 - As tax season begins, Defense Department officials
want to remind TRICARE beneficiaries of changes in the tax laws, which require
all Americans to have health care insurance.

For the first time since the Affordable Care Act passed in 2012, all U.S.
citizens, including service members, their families, military retirees, DoD
civilians and nonappropriated employees, must report health care coverage on
their 2014 taxes, said Mark Ellis, a Defense Health Agency health care
operations program analyst.

For this year only, taxpayers will "self-attest" on their 2014 tax forms to each
month in which they had health care coverage, he said.

Forms Issued to Military, Civilian Taxpayers

In January 2015, DoD and the services' pay centers will issue military and
civilian taxpayers forms that reflect medical coverage, much the same way
employees receive their W2s, Ellis said.

"The IRS will require insurers to send that information," Ellis said, adding
that IRS is the agency that will assess penalties for those who are not insured
on a month-by-month basis.

DoD has more than 250,000 beneficiaries who are eligible for TRICARE, Ellis
said, adding that it's up to each service member to make sure their DEERS data
base lists Social Security numbers for them and their families, so the 2015
health care tax forms can be sent out.

Meets Minimal Essential Coverage

The act mandates that health care must meet minimum essential coverage, and
TRICARE coverage meets that criteria for the majority of service members and
their families, Ellis said.

For example, TRICARE, TRICARE Overseas, TRICARE Remote and the Uniformed
Services Family Health Plan meet the minimum essential coverage, he added.

Uniformed service members who have questions about TRICARE, the act and the
individual coverage mandate can visit the TRICARE website and download the fact
sheet on TRICARE and the act, where TRICARE plans are listed with how they match
up to minimum essential coverage,  Ellis said.  

(NOTE:  The TRICARE fact sheet is available at

The site also has suggestions for those who need coverage to meet the act's
minimum requirements, he noted. That group of individuals could include retired
reserve members, select reserve members, young adults up to age 26 and those who
leave military service but need transitional coverage, Ellis said.

TRICARE beneficiaries with tax questions should contact the Internal Revenue
Service or their tax advisers, he emphasized.

"The experts there can help them," Ellis said.

Related information:

TRICARE and The Affordable Care Act -

TRICARE and The Affordable Care Act   Fact Sheet -


SOURCE:  DoD Press Release at


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