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Pay and Compensation -- Question & Answer Listing  
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Question / Answer

Question:
How do I know if I am eligible to be reimbursed for my travel costs associated with receiving Veterans Administration (VA) medical care?

Answer:
You may be reimbursed for mileage or public transportation if you are a veteran with a service-connected disability rated at 30% or more; traveling for treatment of a service-connected condition; receiving a VA pension; traveling for scheduled compensation or pension examination; or if you are a veteran whose income does not exceed the maximum VA pension rate. Travel payments are subject to deductibles. However, deductibles do not apply if you are traveling for a compensation or pension examination.

Question:
How do I know which tax forms I need and how to prepare them?

Answer:
During the tax season military personnel and their families can take advantage of the Army's Tax Assistance program which offers free tax preparation services. They can help you identify which form you need to complete your taxes. There are a number of commercial tax preparation services, books, and software programs available to assist you in preparing your taxes. Additionally, you can visit the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website for more information on Federal Income Taxes.

Question:
How do I set up direct deposit of my pay into my bank account?

Answer:
To sign up for Direct Deposit of your paycheck, retirement check, government check, or other recurring electronic funds deposit to your bank account, you will need to complete a Direct Deposit Authorization Form that includes your name, Social Security Number, and specific bank information (account routing numbers, bank address, etc.) and submit it to your employer for processing. Attaching a voided check or deposit slip can often be helpful. It usually takes a paycheck or two before the automatic deposits begin, so follow-up with your financial institution.

Question:
How do taxes impact my take home pay?

Answer:
Your take home pay is the amount left over after Federal, State, and Local taxes (if applicable) are taken out as well as any allotments you have set up (e.g., loan payments, automatic savings account contributions, charitable donations, etc.).

Question:
How is sick leave determined for full-time and part-time employees (military and civilian)?

Answer:
"Soldiers, unlike civilian employees, do not accrue sick leave. Short-term sick leave for military personnel may be authorized by the Soldier's commanding officer on an as needed basis. Soldiers who require sick leave, maternity leave, and/or convalescent leave associated with an illness or injury will be required to obtain the appropriate documentation and approval through their Military Treatment Facility and commanding officer. For Department of the Army Civilian employees, sick leave is provided for periods of incapacitation due to illness, injury, pregnancy, or medical confinement, and should be conserved for long periods of recuperation or serious illnesses. These benefits accrue to full-time employees accrue 4 hours per pay period or 14 days per year regardless of grade or length of service. "

Question:
How often does my Soldier get paid?

Answer:
Service members can opt to receive either one payment in the beginning of each month or two payments per month with half of the month's earnings being received in the beginning of the month and the other half at mid-month.

Question:
If I adopt a child born in a foreign country, will my adoption expenses be reimbursed?

Answer:
Active duty military members can be reimbursed for documented, reasonable, and necessary "qualifying" adoption expenses up to $2000 per adoptive child, but not more than $5000 per calendar year. A "qualifying" adoption refers to a child under the age of 18, intercountry adoptions, and adoptions of children with special needs and only if they are arranged by a qualified adoption agency. The adoption must have been arranged through a state or local government agency or through a nonprofit voluntary adoption agency that is authorized by state or local law to place children for adoption. Private adoptions and adoptions of stepchildren are not covered. Check with your military legal and/or finance officer for more information.

Question:
What are Income Deduction and Income Withholding Orders and when may they be necessary?

Answer:
Income Deduction and Income Withholding Orders are court- or administratively-ordered deductions of a specified amount from a parent’s income for payment of child support.

Question:
What are military pay allotments?

Answer:
Allotments are designated amounts of a service member's pay that is authorized to be paid to a designated allotee.

Question:
What are Military Pay Deductions?

Answer:
Military Pay Deductions are charged against military pay entitlements, as indicated by type and amount and are typically used to pay the government back for monetary advances made to the Soldier.
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