Financial Issues

Another essential element of your pre-deployment planning is ensuring your finances are in order and that you have a trusted person (spouse, parent, friend) who can oversee your financial affairs. Even if you routinely monitor your finances online, you may not have internet access at your deployment location or a situation may arise that requires immediate attention. Once you have identified the person who will handle your finances while you are away, talk to this person about your financial wishes. Your discussion should include a military pay overview, your current financial plan, responsibilities and obligations, and how you would like the person to handle financial concerns in your absence.

Provide a Military Pay Overview

Tell this person about your LES (Leave and Earnings Statement). Describe what allowances or additional payment you will receive while deployed. Outline who the person should contact if there is a problem with your pay

Your Current Financial Situation

Take some time to sit down and create a deployment budget. What bills and obligations do you have each month? In addition to your current expenses, you may want to include additional expenses either you or your family may incur, such as postage for mailing packages, calling cards, child care, yard maintenance services, etc. Will your obligations change while you are deployed? For example, if someone else is the caregiver for your children while you are away, do they have the financial support they need to meet the needs of the children? Will you suspend any services while you are deployed, such as a cell phone? Suspended services can be removed from your deployment budget. If you will receive an additional allowance while you are deployed, have you discussed with your family member or trusted individual what you would like to do with the extra funds? Many service members take advantage of the Savings Deposit Program while they are deployed. Contact your finance office or DFAS for more information. If you do not establish a Savings Deposit Account before you deploy, your designated representative may need a special power of attorney to set up this account later.

Financial Emergencies

Even the best-prepared may face a financial hardship. Have you discussed with your family how best to handle a financial emergency? Does your family know where to go to receive financial assistance? Familiarize yourself with community and military resources that are available to you and your family. Each branch of Service has a nonprofit organization that assists service members and their families in times of need. Relief societies provide grants and interest-free loans for emergency financial assistance, including emergency transportation, vehicle repairs, medical expenses, and other unforeseen family emergencies.

 Army Emergency Relief
 Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society
 Air Force Aid Society
 Coast Guard Mutual Assistance
 Reserve Aid

*Many states have military assistance funds established for National Guard families.

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