DFAS Retired Pay Confusion

bonecrusher07

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I was recently retired through a MEB. Like many I waived retirement pay to receive VA Compensation. As a reservist I was not entitled to retirement pay until the age of 60, and my 20+ years only added up to about 11.5 AD years.

Strangely, my retired pay amount at DFAS shows my retirement pay at $3458 monthy, which is correct for an AD retiree in my paygrade. Can anyone exlain that? I never had any kind of retirement briefing and DFAS has been less than helpful. The retirement services office that I dealt with through my state told me that my pension will be around $1550 at age 60.
 

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RonG

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I was recently retired through a MEB. Like many I waived retirement pay to receive VA Compensation. As a reservist I was not entitled to retirement pay until the age of 60, and my 20+ years only added up to about 11.5 AD years.

Strangely, my retired pay amount at DFAS shows my retirement pay at $3458 monthy, which is correct for an AD retiree in my paygrade. Can anyone exlain that? I never had any kind of retirement briefing and DFAS has been less than helpful. The retirement services office that I dealt with through my state told me that my pension will be around $1550 at age 60.
Hello @bonecrusher07 ,

Your disability retired pay is computed as follows:

1. Retired Pay Formula
All of the retirement plans determine your monthly pay by multiplying your retired pay base by a service percentage:

Retired Pay Base
x Service Percent Multiplier
= Gross Retired Pay

Your gross retired pay is rounded down to the nearest dollar.

2. High-3: If you entered active or reserve military service after September 7, 1980, your retired pay base is the average of the highest 36 months of basic pay. If you served less than three years, your base will be the average monthly active duty basic pay during your period of service.

3. Multiplier:

DISABILITY RETIREMENT
The multiplier for disability retired pay is either:

  • 2.5 percent for each year of service, or
  • disability percentage assigned by the service at the time you retire
Either way, the multiplier is limited to 75 percent by law. If you are on the Temporary Disability Retired List, the minimum multiplier is 50 percent while on the TDRL.

DFAS uses the method that results in the largest payment. But if you’d like to choose the other method, please send DFAS your request in writing.

REDUCTION/WAIVER/OFFSET:

After computation shown above, the gross disability retired pay is reduced by the amount of VA compensation you receive. You would have been required to agree to this waiver in order to receive VA compensation. Any residual (left over) retired pay after the reduction/waiver/offset is retained by the retiree.

Ron

Edited to add recommendation:
A. Use MyPay to review your current DFAS RAS; it should show the reduction. If not, call DFAS customer service to determine if they have the waiver info which should have been provided to DFAS via electronic means.
B. Check your retained copy of the VA claim form. You agree to waive retired pay by NOT checking a certain box (item 26) on the form.
 

bonecrusher07

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Registered Member
"After computation shown above, the gross disability retired pay is reduced by the amount of VA compensation you receive. You would have been required to agree to this waiver in order to receive VA compensation. Any residual (left over) retired pay after the reduction/waiver/offset is retained by the retiree."

How am I supposed to know which amount is correct though? I was placed on the PDRL and DFAS shows my retirement benefit as being more than double what the NG says it will be. I'm only 47 so I won't see any of it for 12+ years.
 

RonG

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As I mentioned earlier, any residual retired pay (left over from the reduction) is kept by the retiree. If you are receiving ALL your disability retired pay, your waiver has not been processed or not received.

Note: Almost everyone's disability retired pay is more than what it would be upon RC retirement or even regular retirement.

Disability retired pay is computed as I explained; not the way the NG has explained your retired pay upon reaching the age requirement.

This should have been discussed in detail by your PEBLO .

Ron
 

RonG

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Hello @bonecrusher07

In December 2019 you said, "As it is, I have a $3500 tax free check form the VA. "

You mentioned in this thread, "my retired pay amount at DFAS shows my retirement pay at $3458 monthly,"

Computation of waiver effect.
3458 disability retirement minus 3500 VA compensation = zero retired pay remaining.

You once expressed interest in CRSC. See the following for a collection of CRSC information including application procedures:N
A Supplement to CRSC Information <---LINK

Once you near the age requirement for NG/RC retirement, you can apply for that type retirement. Approval will activate CRDP by DFAS if you are otherwise eligible.
The disability retirement multiplier can still be used instead of the longevity multiplier: however, the combination of any residual retired pay and CRDP cannot exceed the longevity portion of retired pay. In other words, upon reaching the age requirement, you should receive the amount computed or shown by the NG to you.

Ron
 

bonecrusher07

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Registered Member
Thanks Ron, it has been a terribly confusing process and my PEBLO never explained anything regarding money until the end. He sent a calculation that explained that I could have the DoD retired pay amount of around $1150 per month, or take the VA money. I'm not sure if it was a COVID thing or if he was handling too many cases, he never responded to any questions I had. It was a few days later when my state retirement office told me the amount I would get at age 60 would be around $1550, then I saw the $3458 amount at DFAS yesterday. A typical interaction was me getting an email that said I had X number of days to sign or consult legal. He never replied to any emails I sent unless I was submitting signed documents.

There are plenty of resources to read about but there is so much jargon that I can't decipher it all. I'm trying to see if NVLSP can help with the CRSC part. I don't want to screw anything up.
 

RonG

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Hello @bonecrusher07

Re: "There are plenty of resources to read about but there is so much jargon that I can't decipher it all. I'm trying to see if NVLSP can help with the CRSC part. I don't want to screw anything up."

This is just one person's opinion. I believe many think of the application process for CRSC as complex. Admittedly, my CRSC qualifying disabilities were easy to prove (Agent Orange related), but if one has the evidence, the process is simple. Each service provides guidelines as to what is required.

DoD 7000.14-R Financial Management Regulation Volume 7B, Chapter 63
"631001. Basis for Determination A. Determinations of whether a disability is combat-related will be based on the preponderance of available documentary information where quality of information is more important than quantity. All relevant documentary information is to be weighed in relation to known facts and circumstances, and determinations will be made on the basis of credible, objective documentary information in the records as distinguished from personal opinion, speculation, or conjecture."

"B. The burden of proof that a disability is combat-related rests with the applicant, who is required to provide copies of documents in his or her possession to the best of his or her ability. A record submitted by a member may be used in support of his or her application if that record appears regular on its face and is consistent with Military Service documents and procedures in use at the time, based on the best information available. Military Departments may compile a list of typical documents used in various time periods."

Also, from the same source:
"630502. Other Combat-Related Disabilities
A combat-related disability is a disability with an assigned medical diagnosis code from the VASRD. The Military Departments will determine whether a disability is combat-related based on the following criteria: A. As a direct result of armed conflict, B. While engaged in hazardous service, C. In the performance of duty under conditions simulating war, or D. Through an instrumentality of war. NOTE: The Department will record for each disability determined to be combat-related which of the circumstances provided qualifies the disability as combat-related. A determination of combat relatedness (see section 6306) will be made concerning each separate disability with an assigned medical diagnosis code from the VASRD. A retiree may have disabilities that are not combat related. Such disabilities will not be considered in determining eligibility for CRSC or the amount of CRSC payable. An uncorroborated statement in a record that a disability is combat-related will not, by itself, be considered determinative for purposes of meeting the combat-related standards for CRSC prescribed herein. CRSC determinations must be made based on the program criteria."

Please note that having an injury or other type disability that developed while in a combat zone does not necessarily mean it will be considered combat-related. The services provide examples of those cases. The Army's version was copied and included at A Supplement to CRSC Information <---LINK
A veterans service officer might be able to assist you will your application.

Ron
 
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