When Will I Get My Army Severance Pay?

Leaving the army can be an emotional and challenging time. One of the key things on your mind might be getting your severance pay and when exactly you’ll receive it.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: You should receive your full lump-sum severance pay about 60-90 days after your separation date from the army.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk through everything you need to know about army severance pay timelines, eligibility criteria, how the amount is calculated, and more.

What Is Army Severance Pay?

Army severance pay is a lump-sum payment that is made to service members who are leaving the army under certain circumstances. This payment serves as a form of financial assistance to help ease the transition into civilian life.

It is important to note that severance pay is different from retirement pay, as it is specifically given to those who are involuntarily separated from the army.

A lump-sum payment made when leaving the army

When a service member is separated from the army, whether due to medical reasons, reduction in force, or other involuntary circumstances, they may be eligible for severance pay. This payment is calculated based on a formula that takes into account the individual’s years of service and their base pay.

It is intended to provide some financial support during the period of transition as the service member looks for new employment or adjusts to civilian life.

For more information: You can visit the official U.S. Army website to learn more about the specific details and regulations regarding army severance pay.

Eligibility criteria – must have served 6+ years

In order to be eligible for army severance pay, a service member must have served for at least six years. This requirement ensures that the individual has dedicated a significant portion of their life to serving in the army and is deserving of financial support upon separation.

It is important to note that if a service member is separated from the army due to misconduct or other administrative reasons, they may not be eligible for severance pay. The criteria for eligibility are carefully evaluated to ensure that only those who meet the necessary requirements receive this financial benefit.

Did you know? According to recent statistics, the average severance pay for service members leaving the army after serving six or more years is approximately $20,000. This amount can vary depending on factors such as rank, years of service, and base pay.

When Will You Get Severance Pay After Leaving the Army?

One of the questions that many veterans have when they leave the army is when they will receive their severance pay. The answer to this question can vary depending on several factors. Generally, veterans can expect to receive their severance pay within 60-90 days after their separation from the army.

Factors that Affect Timeline

While the general timeline for receiving severance pay is 60-90 days, there are several factors that can affect this timeline:

  1. Administrative Processes: The administrative processes involved in separating a veteran from the army can sometimes cause delays in the disbursement of severance pay. These processes include verifying service records, calculating the amount of severance pay owed, and ensuring all necessary paperwork is completed.
  2. Backlog: There may be a backlog of cases that need to be processed, which can also contribute to delays in receiving severance pay. This backlog can occur due to a high volume of separations or other administrative factors.
  3. Correct Information: It is crucial for veterans to ensure that their contact information, particularly their mailing address, is up to date. If the army does not have the correct information, it can further delay the delivery of severance pay.
  4. Disability Evaluation: If a veteran is also going through the disability evaluation process, it may take longer to receive severance pay. This is because the army needs to determine the extent of any service-related disabilities and calculate the appropriate amount of severance pay.

It is important for veterans to stay in contact with the appropriate army personnel or their veterans’ affairs representative to track the progress of their severance pay. If there are any delays or issues, they can provide assistance in resolving them.

For more information on severance pay and other benefits for veterans, you can visit the official website of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at www.va.gov.

How Is Army Severance Pay Calculated?

Based on years of service and final basic pay

Army severance pay is calculated based on two main factors: years of service and final basic pay. The number of years an individual has served in the Army plays a significant role in determining the amount of severance pay they will receive.

The longer the service, the higher the potential severance pay.

The final basic pay is also taken into consideration when calculating army severance pay. This is the individual’s basic pay at the time of separation from the Army. The higher the final basic pay, the higher the potential severance pay.

It’s important to note that severance pay is generally not paid to individuals who are leaving the Army voluntarily or who are discharged for misconduct. It is typically provided to those who have completed a certain number of years of service and are involuntarily separated from the Army due to factors such as medical conditions, reduction in force, or other circumstances beyond their control.

Detailed calculation formulas and examples

The exact calculation formulas for army severance pay can be complex and may vary depending on individual circumstances. However, the basic formula typically involves multiplying the years of service by 2.5% of the final basic pay.

For example, if someone served for 10 years and their final basic pay is $3,000, the calculation would be as follows:

Severance pay = 10 years x 2.5% x $3,000 = $7,500

It’s important to consult the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) website or contact your local finance office for the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding army severance pay calculations.

The DFAS website provides detailed information and resources to help individuals understand the specific formulas and requirements for calculating severance pay.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that severance pay may be subject to certain deductions, such as taxes and debts owed to the government. These deductions can impact the final amount received by the individual.

For more information on army severance pay and how it is calculated, you can visit the official DFAS website at www.dfas.mil.

How Will You Receive Your Severance Pay?

Receiving your army severance pay is an important part of the transition process. Once you have completed your service, you may be wondering how and when you will receive your severance pay. The army offers two main options for receiving your payment: direct deposit to your bank account or a paper check mailed to your home address.

Direct deposit to your bank account

Direct deposit is a convenient and secure way to receive your severance pay. By choosing this option, the army will electronically transfer the funds directly to your bank account. This eliminates the need to wait for a check to arrive in the mail or go to a bank to cash it.

It also reduces the risk of the check being lost or stolen.

To set up direct deposit, you will need to provide the army with your bank account information, including the bank’s routing number and your account number. This information can usually be found on your checks or by contacting your bank directly.

Once you have submitted the necessary information, the army will process your payment and deposit the funds into your account. Typically, the funds will be available within a few business days.

Paper check mailed to your home address

If you prefer to receive a paper check, the army can mail it to your home address. This option may be suitable for those without a bank account or for individuals who prefer to have a physical check in hand.

However, it is important to note that the process of receiving a paper check may take longer than direct deposit.

Once the army processes your severance pay, they will mail the check to the address on file. The time it takes for the check to arrive will depend on various factors, including postal service efficiency and any potential delays.

It is recommended to keep your contact information up to date to ensure timely delivery of your check.

Regardless of which option you choose, it is important to keep in mind that severance pay is typically subject to taxes. The army will provide you with the necessary documentation, such as a W-2 form, to report your severance pay when filing your taxes.

It is advisable to consult with a tax professional for guidance on how to properly handle your severance pay.

What If You Don’t Receive Your Army Severance Pay?

Contact your personnel center

If you find yourself in a situation where you haven’t received your Army severance pay, the first step is to contact your personnel center. They will have access to your records and can provide information on the status of your severance pay.

It’s important to provide them with any relevant documentation or proof of your service and the specific details of your separation.

Be sure to have your identification and military service number handy when reaching out to your personnel center. They will be able to assist you in determining the reason for the delay in payment and guide you through the necessary steps to rectify the situation.

Follow up with DFAS

If contacting your personnel center doesn’t resolve the issue, the next step is to follow up with the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS). DFAS is responsible for processing and disbursing military pay, including severance pay.

When reaching out to DFAS, it’s important to provide them with all relevant information, such as your name, military service number, and the dates of your service. They will be able to investigate the issue and provide you with an update on the status of your severance pay.

DFAS has a dedicated Customer Service section that can assist you with any pay-related issues. They can be reached via phone or email, and their contact information can be found on their official website.

Pro tip: It’s always a good idea to keep copies of any documents related to your military service, including your separation orders and pay records. These documents can serve as evidence if there are any discrepancies or delays in receiving your severance pay.


Leaving the army and transitioning to civilian life comes with many changes. Understanding details like when you’ll receive your severance pay gives you clarity and financial peace of mind.

We hope this comprehensive guide provided answers to all of your key questions surrounding army severance pay timelines, eligibility, calculation, and delivery.

Best of luck as you embark on your post-army civilian career and life after service!

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