When Will the Recruits be Paid?
Your Recruit must be at RTC for at least 3 full weeks prior to a pay day in order to be paid because it takes a while for everything to get entered in the system, but be assured, your Recruit will receive the pay from the day he/she was sworn in at MEPS on the way to RTC. There have been times when the pay has been deposited on a pay day that was just over 2 full weeks after the recruit's arrival at RTC, but that is not consistently the case. If that happens, then be pleasantly surprised.
Pay days are the 1st and the 15th, but those who choose to have the pay directly deposited into a Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) account will see the deposit a day earlier—we have been seeing that direct deposits with some other institutions are also deposited a day early. The pay is directly deposited into the account of the Recruit's choice. Your recruit will have the opportunity to set up an allotment to pay a bill if he/she took the account information to do so. If pay day falls on a weekend or holiday, the deposit is made on the previous business day. Here are some examples of when others have received that first deposit in the past: arrived 8 March – deposit 31 March (this Recruit must have chosen NFCU or the 1st was on a weekend), arrived 2 December – deposit 1 January, arrived 28 May – deposit 1 July, arrived 20 May – deposit 15 June, arrived 3 September – deposit 30 September (this Recruit uses NFCU).
Recruits and Sailors don't get pay stubs. Their LES (Leave and Earning Statement) is online at https://mypay.dfas.mil/mypay.aspx. The mypay account appears to be set up by the recruit at some point during the first week or so of BC. (See Understanding The Navy LES. How to Read a Military LES gives a line-by-line guide to reading the LES.)
It will take 3-4 pay days for the pay to settle at what will be the norm for your Recruit/Sailor. Pay days are the 1st and the 15th and they will be paid half of their monthly earnings on each pay day. Remember that state and federal taxes are taken out as well as the premium for life insurance (SGLI, which is about $27 a month). The first few deposits are not the same because the first deposit is prorated from when the Recruit first arrived and that deposit and/or the next one will have deductions for the NEX card (Recruit Card) the Recruit is issued to use for the things for the Sea bag and things that are needed at BC ($150) and for uniforms. Note that they get a uniform allowance, so money is put in and then taken back out for the various uniform parts, but the uniform allowance and the charges for the uniform may not be in the same pay cycle. (http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/support/uniforms/uniformregulations/Chapter1/Pages/SeabagActive.aspx gives the cost of the items in the Sea Bag and the amount of the allowance. The 2018 info can be found in http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/allowances/clothing-allowances.html.) The pay depends on your recruit’s rate and recruits are paid at their contracted rate even though they are all referred to as SR at RTC until PIR. Some have indicated that all money on the Recruit Card needs to be used while at RTC since the card may not be able to be used at other commands.
If something happens and a Recruit is sent home, s/he will be paid for all of the time s/he was at RTC from the time that s/he was sworn in at MEPS on the way to RTC.
Medical coverage for Recruits begins as soon as they swear in at MEPS, as does life insurance. (I suggest that you continue medical coverage until your recruit has PIR because it may be difficult to add him/her back on if something happens. Check with your insurance company to see what is best in your case.) Dependents are also covered under medical from day one. The Recruit must enter them on Page 2 (NAVPERS 1070/602 - Dependency Application/Record of Emergency Data) and get them enrolled in DEERS (Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System). This happens about a week or so after arrival at boot camp. (MILITARY SPOUSE INFO gives more info.)
Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS) gives info on the "meal allowance" that your recruit/Sailor will receive. In BC the BAS is paid directly to RTC. At some Schools/commands, that amount shows up in the LES and then is deducted and paid to the galley even if the Sailor seldom or never eats there. It is important to know that because the Sailor will be paying for food s/he never eats if s/he eats at other places frequently. (There are other links on that site that you may want to check out as well.)
Military Compensation--Allowances will help you to understand each of the allowances.
Anything that ends in allowance or includes allowance in the name is non-taxable. Anything that ends in pay is taxable. BAS, BAH, and FSA are all non-taxable. Base Pay, Flight Pay, and Sea Pay are all taxable
Additional Information for Spouses
MILITARY SPOUSE INFO has information for you.
If your recruit calls and asks you to send a copy of your photo ID, driver's license, and/or marriage license, send copies, not the original. The recruiter or someone at MEPS will need to certify that the copy matches the original document so be sure to get that "stamp" and signature before sending the document/s.
BAH (Basic Allowance for Housing) does start from day one, but you may not see it in the accounts right away. Some have seen it deposited in the first or second pay and others have not received it until after the Sailor has left boot camp. It may depend on whether the dependents were listed prior to leaving for boot camp or were listed for the first time at RTC. BAH will be for where you are located while your spouse is in BC and school. Once your Sailor is out of school you are expected to move with him/her, and if you don't, BAH will be for his/her duty station.
You will get separation pay once your recruit been gone for 30 days.
You need to know your spouse's full name, social security number, DOB, rate (rank/paygrade), and contracted rating (job/specialty). It is also a good idea to keep his/her contact information with you.
Your spouse will send you a completed DEERS Form 1172-2 (https://www.pdffiller.com/jsfiller-desk4/?projectId=216358289&expId=3776&expBranch=2#a9422112716f47ff9de221695ccfc143) in the second week or so after arrival at RTC. (Look for it around day 12-20 based on reports from spouses.) It will have all the information you need to get your Military Dependent ID at the nearest military base to you (it does not have to be a Navy base). You should call ahead to verify the hours or check https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/rsl/appj/site?execution=e3s1. You may need to make an appointment online at *https://rapids-appointments.dmdc.osd.mil/. You will go to the Visitors Center at the base. They will give you a temporary pass to get onto base and will tell you which building to go to to get your ID made. You may also be able to register your car if you intend to use this base for shopping and/or services. If there is not a military base nearby, there may still be a location near you where you will be able to get your ID.
For your ID, make sure you take your marriage license, social security card, and your drivers license. (If you don't have one of those, make sure you take at least 3 government issued ID's; like passport, ID card, green card, etc.) They will take your picture and make your ID while you wait and then give it to you before you leave.
You are enrolled into Tricare Standard for medical if it is needed from the time your spouse had you entered into DEERS or from the time of his arrival at RTC if you were entered onto his Page 2 prior to arrival at RTC. There is a yearly deductible and a co-pay for each visit to an approved civilian provider. You can stay on Tricare Standard or go to Tricare Prime when you get your ID card. For Tricare Standard the policy # is your spouse's Social Security #.
When you get your Military Dependent ID card you can go and enroll in Tricare Prime, where there is no cost to you; but it does not start immediately. If you enroll prior to the 20th of the month, you will be covered as of the 1st of the next month. If you sign up after the 20th, then it doesn't start until the first of the following month. You will then be assigned a primary care manager (PCM) to go to. If there isn't a base near you then you can go to a civilian provider.
Your tan Military Dependent ID card authorizes access to commissary, exchange and certain morale, welfare and recreation (MWR) privileges on military bases. Your Military Dependent ID serves as your insurance card when seeking health care.
Defense Finance and Accounting Service may have information you need.
Protections under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act
The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA), formerly known as the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Civil Relief Act (SSCRA), is a federal law that provides protections for military members as they enter active duty. It covers issues such as rental agreements, security deposits, prepaid rent, eviction, installment contracts, credit card interest rates, mortgage interest rates, mortgage foreclosure, civil judicial proceedings, automobile leases, life insurance, health insurance and income tax payments.
You may be able to receive a lower interest rate on your mortgage and/or on credit cards effective on the date that your recruit was sworn in at MEPS and was then enlisted in the US Navy. Check with your creditors and find out what proof you need to provide--sometimes providing a copy of your Military Dependent ID or of your spouse's Military ID or his/her enlistment papers is enough. There are also protections for renters (you don't have to pay a fee if you have to break a lease due to military orders among other protections). There are other protections as well and the Supreme Court has ruled the SCRA must be read with "an eye friendly to those who dropped their affairs to answer their country's call." Military legal assistance attorneys are available to provide guidance on the SCRA. (See http://www.military.com/benefits/military-legal-matters/scra/servicemembers-civil-relief-act-overview.html.)
There is a mobile app. "New to the Navy", that may be helpful in answering questions you or your spouse has. There is more info at http://www.navy.mil/submit/display.asp?story_id=92264.
If you have a young child and would like a book to help explain about Daddy (or Mommy) being away at boot camp, then check out Hooyah Daddy!!: My Daddy's in Navy boot camp Kindle Edition available from amazon.com at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01CXIQ54G?*Version*=1&*entries*=0.
If I have used a term or abbreviation that is unclear, What does ??? mean? (A Guide to Navy Abbreviations and Terminology) should help; if not, please ask because if you have a question, someone else most likely does as well.
*If you cannot open https://rapids-appointments.dmdc.osd.mil/, click on Tools within your browser and then Internet Options, then click on the Advanced tab, then under Security, be sure that Use TLS 1.0 is checked and then click Apply. You may be able to add the exception after clicking on the link.
The above information is provided by lemonelephant, the mom of a retired Sailor.
Last updated 06/10/2019