The U.S. Defense Department is in the midst of a push to educate troops about the military’s new blended retirement system.
The Pentagon is making a “full-court press” to bring officers, enlisted personnel and their families up to speed on the new benefit, slated to take effect Jan. 1, 2018, according to Wayne Boswell, director of financial readiness in the office of the assistant secretary of defense for readiness.
The department’s June rollout of the so-called blended retirement system, or BRS, course on the website Joint Knowledge Online and other informational materials on the website Military OneSource marked the “first step in making sure that we reduce the speculation and the rumors, but get the facts out there so that as a force we can move forward into this new era of, I say, self investment,” Boswell told reporters at the time.
The retirement overhaul, approved in the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act, essentially means troops will be offered a slightly smaller defined benefit equal to about 40 percent of pay, rather than 50 percent, after 20 years of service, but also a 401(k)-like defined contribution Thrift Savings Plan with matching contributions up to 5 percent after just two years of service.
Service members who retire after two decades would receive both benefits — the annuity (calculated by multiplying 2 percent by the number of years’ service by the monthly average of the three highest years of basic pay) and the TSP.
Meanwhile, the vast majority of troops — more than eight in 10 — who leave the service before the 20-year mark but after two years would receive the fully vested value of the TSP, marking an “opportunity to leave with some financial resources that they can move into another retirement plan in another company,” Boswell said. “That’s what makes this, I think, very different from the old system.”
For more details see Military.com
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