Service members now have until March 4, 2011 to apply for Retroactive Stop Loss Special Pay (RSLSP). Since about 76,000 service members have yet to file claims for this compensation, the March 4 extension got put in place on December 21.
The Department of Defense estimated that 145,000 service members, veterans and their beneficiaries are eligible to receive this pay, which is $500 per month served during stop loss duty. A service member could have served part of the month and still receive compensation.
In 2009, $534.4 million got allocated for the Stop Loss Compensation Act. About $250 million remains for those whose retirement was suspended or who served involuntary extensions between Sept. 11, 2001 and Sept. 30, 2009.
Money is not simply sent to eligible service members. They are required to file a claim to their respective military branch. The most recent deadline extension allowing eligible service members to apply for recompense by March 4 is not the first of its kind.
When passed in 2009, the act’s deadline was Oct. 21, 2010. President Obama signed a resolution on December 4 to push the deadline to Dec. 18, 2010. Three days after that deadline, Obama put his John Hancock on another resolution to make March 4 the deadline.
So far the average payout is about $3,800. At most these repayments reach about $7,000. These stop loss compensations aren’t chump change, but it’s up to service members to file a claim. Public announcements from Obama and other officials combined with social media are expected to increase the number of claims filed.
Service members who were stop lossed but then voluntarily reenlisted—and earned a bonus for doing so—may have voided their eligibility for stop loss compensation. Regardless, the Department of Defense urges any service member who thinks they qualify for stop loss compensation to file a claim before March 4.
With the extension comes a continued effort from the Department of Defense to contact those who are eligible. Through direct mail, social media, news media, and service and veteran organizations, more service members should file claims.
Apply Here Today before the extension expires!
Photo thanks to wstera2.