Service members in high-cost housing markets are getting financial relief thanks to the orders in a September 22, 2022, Memorandum from Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin. There are multiple directives in that Memorandum, including a review of the 2023 Basic Allowance For Housing (BAH) calculations to keep BAH current with “unusually dynamic fluctuations in the… Read more »
A Comprehensive Guide to Military Benefits Joining the United States Military as a soldier, sailor, airman, Marine, Coast Guard member or Space Force Guardian means accepting a commission or taking an oath of enlistment. The oath describes the new servicemember’s obligations to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign… Read more »
SGLI is an acronym that stands for Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance. This insurance is a low-cost insurance option provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The federal government purchases group life insurance from “a commercial life insurance company” according to the VA official site. Service members can choose coverage in $50 thousand increments with a… Read more »
The FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program can help Veterans access low-cost or no-cost broadband internet for VA Telehealth appointments
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, which is a perfect time to talk about an initiative from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) called Make the Connection. Make The Connection: A Mental Health Resource The VA has collected stories from veterans who explain the challenges they’ve faced during and after their military service. These veteran… Read more »
These Grants Will Be for Suicide Prevention Services On April 15th, the VA published a Notice of Funding Opportunity for $51,750,000 in suicide prevention grants. These grants will be awarded to organizations that provide or coordinate suicide prevention services for veterans at risk of suicide and the families of those veterans. Helping those at risk… Read more »
Delivery From the Commissary? Yes Please! In 2019, the Commissary added the Click2Go service allowing patrons to be able to order and pay for their groceries online, and then go to the Commissary and use curbside pick up to get them. This has been a great service but the next step is Commissary delivery. When… Read more »
As a TRICARE recipient, you are eligible for telemedicine services that connect you with therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists. Learn more.
The “Our Military Kids” Program Offers $300 Grants We all know that kids and their activities can cost money. If you have multiple children, that can add up. If you are an active duty family you have access to what they offer on your military installation, but if you are a National Guard, Reservist, or… Read more »
Active duty military life means moving. The Military Interstate Compact addresses the education transition issues of children of military families. Learn how.
VA Loan Benefits: Getting Started Are you wondering how to get started with your VA home loan benefits? The most important thing to do starting out is to determine whether you are currently eligible to receive a VA Certificate of Eligibility (VA COE). Those who are eligible may apply for it may do so in a… Read more »
What do VA home loan rules say about occupancy, deployments, and investment properties? These don’t sound like related topics at first, but believe it or not, the VA Lender’s Handbook, VA Pamphlet 26-7, has a lot to say about all three subjects and they do intersect. Learn more.
There will be an app that is coming out in mid-2022, that will make access to the TSP platform even easier. Also, there will be new tools such as a virtual assistant and virtual chat. There will also be a mutual fund window opening for the TSP. Learn more.
Ranking the Best PCS Benefits for Members of the Military and Their Families Most military service members and their families will experience at least one PCS during their time in the military. If you haven’t been through a PCS yet, you will. But what benefits can you get that are related to PCSing? Here are… Read more »
Military Benefits Questions Answered by VEP The Mission of the Veterans Education Project is to address the current issues that student veterans and service members face every day. They do this by reaching out to the veteran community, advocating for veterans with policy makers, and bringing every possible resource into the fight to support our… Read more »
Congress passed the REMOTE Act at the end of Dec 2021. This act extended provisions of the Student Veteran Coronavirus Response Act of 2020 until June 1, 2022. The Student Veteran Protection Act ensured that student veterans would be paid the GI Bill BAH portions in-full, even if the classes were taught remotely. Learn more.
On January 20th, 2022, the House of Representatives passed The Ensuring Veterans’ Smooth Transition Act. Also known as the EVEST Act, H.R. 4673 would make enrollment into the VA system automatic for transitioning service members. Learn more.
TRICARE began covering labor doulas, lactation consultants, and lactation counselors on January 1, 2022, as long as certain conditions are met. Learn more.
Military Benefit Changes for 2022 These are the changes that have been announced so far. Please keep checking back, as we will continue updating new changes to your military benefits for 2022. TRICARE Updates 2022 TRICARE Pharmacy Network TRICARE Pharmacy Network will have updates going into 2022. As of December 15th, 2021, Walmart and Sam’s… Read more »
As of 15 December 2021, Walmart and Sam’s Club will no longer take TRICARE. But there are still many options for getting your prescriptions. Find out where.
Having a dog or a cat for a pet can be the best thing. But having a dog or cat and then getting PCS orders for an OCONUS location can be stressful and expensive! The good news is that Airmen and Guardians can now receive PCS Pet Transportation Assistance. Learn more!
Beginning in May 2021, the premiums for Tricare Dental coverage will be increasing slightly. Service Members should start noticing the coverage increase during the May pay period. The increases will range from $0.05 to $0.47 depending on the Service member’s status and the number of dependents covered by the program. Learn more.
The Military Pay Charts for 2022. According to federal law, military pay increases are to mirror private-sector wage growth as stated by the Employment Cost Index (ECI). Find military pay for 2022 in our handy military pay charts.
NDAA 2022: Defense Budget Proposal and 2021 Updates The White House has requested almost $270 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs budget for 2022. This is a 10% increase from 2021. This does include a discretionary budget request of $117.2 billion with medical care collections, and a mandatory funding request of $152.7 billion. **… Read more »
For the last 2 years, service members have enjoyed pay raises of at least 3%. However, it is becoming apparent that troops should not count on a similar military pay raise in 2022.
Payback Deadline for Deferred Social Security Tax Extended With the passing of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 just last week, the major change affecting service members, federal employees, and their families is the extension for repayment of deferred payroll taxes. Effective September 1, 2020, through a presidential order, military and federal employees’ paychecks presented… Read more »
On Aug 11, Veterans Advantage announced a partnership with Legacy, an international company specializing in male fertility, to offer a 25% discount on their core products which can help our nation’s veterans protect their opportunity for future parenthood. Male fertility can be impacted by one’s lifestyle, and we know that life in the military is not easy. Taking steps to improve and preserve fertility is important as many couples are waiting longer to have children.
There has been a ton of activity on Capitol Hill over the past week dealing with legislation and bills that may directly affect you, our nation’s military community. Here’s a quick round-up for you.
TRICARE beneficiaries in select states who have a documented diagnosis of low back pain will receive three free physical therapy visits. The goal of the demonstration is to determine whether waiving physical therapy cost-sharing will incentivize more beneficiaries to attend physical therapy, which may in turn reduce overall healthcare costs and improve patient outcomes.
Two Veteran-Supporting Laws Signed By President In August, President Donald Trump signed two pieces of legislation that will support veterans. One will broaden options for those caught within the legal system and the other will expand a home renovation grant program for veterans who are disabled and blind. The Veteran Treatment Court Coordination Act The… Read more »
Process Change for Student Survivor Benefit Plan The Department of Defense announced an updated process for child beneficiaries of the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) when verifying that they are a full-time student. The SBP annuity is paid to the dependents of fallen service members or deceased military retirees. Payments usually stop when the dependent reaches… Read more »
More than the GI Bill: College Bound, Service Member Financial Tips With a little planning you can stretch the GI Bill into a graduate degree. Here are a few tips that should help you create a five-year plan to get you through one enlistment and in to college. There are tips spanning those looking to… Read more »
Photo: Stadtbibliotheck in Stuttgart, Germany (image by Chelsea Bostelman) Did You Know About These Library Perks for the Military? Every April, libraries and library workers are celebrated during National Library Week. When is the last time you visited a library? For good reason, books come to mind for most people when thinking of libraries. But… Read more »
Two Republican lawmakers, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-TX), ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, and Rep. Trent Kelly (R-MS), ranking member of the Subcommittee on Military Personnel released their latest proposal on military family readiness on April 2, 2020. New Military Family Readiness Legislation Proposed Rep Thornberry stated that “Family readiness is a major… Read more »
$1,500 For Childcare Costs From Army Emergency Relief Childcare costs can be a huge drain on your budget. In some cases, the cost of childcare can mean a spouse decides not to pursue their own career. Luckily, a new AER program can help with this. As of February 1, 2020, AER or Army Emergency Relief… Read more »
The latest NDAA should be signed any day now and the latest pay raise should take effect starting Jan 1. However, we have a pretty good idea what the pay raise will be. As such, we present you with the 2021 Military Pay Charts with the anticipated 3% included.
TRICARE and FEDVIP open enrollment season begins Nov 9 and lasts until Dec 14, 2020. This is the time to make any changes to your existing plans without a Qualifying Life Event (QLE). We also list out the most common QLE’s.
2020 Military Benefit Updates Changes For the latest military benefit changes for 2022, please go here. Changes announced so far. Please keep checking back, as we will continue updating new changes to your military benefits for 2020. TRICARE Drug Costs To Increase By Over 40% Every year on January 1st, TRICARE has its regular cost… Read more »
You may have heard that TRICARE will give you a free breast pump when you have a baby. But, you might also have some questions about how this all works, what you need to do to get your pump, and any other details about the benefit. Here is what you need to know about getting… Read more »
New TRICARE Coverage for Babies TRICARE has added a new coverage for babies. They will now be covering some or all of the cost of breast milk for those in need of the milk for their new baby. Here is what you need to know: When Will TRICARE Cover the Breast Milk? TRICARE will cover… Read more »