Military and Retiree Pay Information
DFAS Pay Charts and Military Retirement Calculators
To find the latest news on military pay, benefits, and pensions, including Defense Finance and Accounting Services (DFAS) pay charts and retirement calculators, visit MilitaryPay.Defense.gov.
Military, Civilian, and Retiree Pay Problems
You can fix your paycheck issues and report suspected military pay fraud through the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS).
Department of Defense (DOD) Employees, Reserve, and Retirees
- Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps active duty and Reserve – Call 1-888-332-7411.
- Retirees, survivors and beneficiaries – Call 1-800-321-1080.
- Former spouses, creditors, and others awarded court-ordered garnishment for alimony, child support, and more – Call 1-888-332-7411.
- Civilian defense employees – Manage your Leave and Earnings Statements, W-2s, and pay information using myPay, DFAS online payroll tool.
Coast Guard Employees, Reserve, and Retirees
Pension Benefits for Military Retirees
The military has two retirement systems: the new Blended Retirement System and the legacy High-3 system. Which plan you can use depends on when you joined the military.
Blended Retirement System (BRS)
A new military retirement system went into effect on January 1, 2018. The new Blended Retirement System (BRS) includes:
- Automatic and matching Thrift Savings Plan contributions
- Mid-career retention bonuses
- A monthly annuity for life after 20 years of service. The annuity will be based on a calculation of 2% per year served, versus 2 ½% per year under the traditional legacy retirement pension.
Enrollment in the BRS depends on when you joined the service:
- If you joined before January 1, 2006, you’ll remain in the legacy retirement system.
- If you joined between January 1, 2006, and December 31, 2017, you have the choice of staying in the legacy system or enrolling in the new one. The last day to enroll in the BRS plan is December 31, 2018. To learn how to enroll, watch a video from your branch of service:
- If you joined the service on or after January 1, 2018, you were automatically enrolled in the BRS.
Legacy High-3 (High-36) System
Servicemembers in the legacy High-3 system must have begun their military service by December 31, 2017. Also called High-36 or “military retired pay,” this is a defined benefit plan.
- You’ll need to serve 20 years or more to qualify for the lifetime monthly annuity.
Your retirement benefit is determined by your years of service. It’s calculated at 2.5% times your highest 36 months of basic pay.Compare the BRS and High-3 Systems
Military Retirees and Pension Benefit Questions
If you’re a military retiree with questions about your benefits, contact your branch of service:
Stay up-to-date with news about changes to your military retiree benefits, cost of living adjustments, and more from the Defense Finance Accounting Service.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) offers an online tool and an online publication to help you determine if your pension or annuity payment is taxable.
Military Retirement and Social Security Benefits
Retirees can get both Social Security benefits and their military pension. Learn how the Social Security Administration (SSA) credits military service for your benefit.
State and Federal Benefits for Military Families
If you receive military or veterans benefits, you may also qualify for other state and federal benefits. This includes Social Security, unemployment benefits, health insurance coverage, welfare, and food assistance.
- Welfare and food assistance - Military and veteran families with a low income can get help with food costs from a wide range of nutrition programs. This includes Supplemental Assistance Nutrition Program (SNAP) benefits, or “food stamps.” Learn how to apply for SNAP benefits. You may also qualify for welfare or temporary assistance for needy families (TANF). This can give you help with housing, home energy, child care, job training, and more.
- Health benefits - Members of the military and their families receive a wide range of health coverage through TRICARE health plans. If you have a low income, you may also qualify for Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). Once you turn 65 or older, or meet other requirements, you can sign up for Medicare. Get information on how to use Medicare and TRICARE together.
- Social Security - You can qualify for both Social Security benefits and military retirement. You’ll receive your full Social Security benefits based on your earnings. To get your benefits, you must earn credits by working and paying Social Security taxes. Learn more about Social Security and how it works.
- Unemployment benefits - If you recently left the military, you may be eligible for unemployment compensation for ex-servicemembers (UCX). You may also qualify for your state’s unemployment insurance program. These programs pay money to workers who become unemployed through no fault of their own. Find out how to apply for unemployment benefits.