Military Connection: 8,600 USAF Opt for Early Retirement: By Debbie Gregory


By Debbie Gregory

Earlier this year, the U.S. Air Force asked thousands of it members to consider voluntarily separating from the branch in 2015.

According to Military Instruction 1332.43, dated February 26, 2014, the DOD’s policy is use Voluntary Separation Pay (VSP) in order to minimize the need for involuntary separations. The instruction mandates that all branches make every effort to utilize the voluntary programs in order to prevent the involuntary separation of service members who otherwise would have remained in service until they were eligible for retirement.

The deadline for Air Force personnel to apply for VSP was May 1st. More than 7,000 enlisted members and over 1,600 officers applied by the deadline. Of those, it is reported that 5,600 of them are eligible for VSP.

To be eligible for VSP, members must be eligible for Temporary Early Retirement Authority (TERA), which means they have accumulated more than 15 years, but less than 20, of active-duty service. Members who utilize VSP will receive all of the same benefits as members who retire at 20 years, but their retirement pay will be pro-rated.

So far, more than 380 officers and roughly 2,400 enlisted airmen have been approved for VSP.

Service members who are interested in finding out more about Voluntary Separation Pay, Temporary Early Retirement Authority can visit or read Military Instruction 1332.43. Service members and military families affected by force reduction are also urged to utilize for connections to resources, benefits and programs to help them transition into their next assignment.

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Military Connection: 8,600 USAF Opt for Early Retirement: By Debbie Gregory