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CAN I OBTAIN A LISTING OF MY AWARDS AND DECORATIONS?

Yes.

All IMAs and Unit Reservists can access personnel data, including decoration information at the virtual MPF through the AF Portal. The virtual MPF will not only provide a listing of your ribbons but will also provide a visual display on how to wear them. Non-participating reservists and retired reservists awaiting pay access myPers or call the contact center at 800-525-0102.

Keep in mind, all web sites with access to a member's personal information are only accessible from a Common Access Card-enabled computer.  

Retired Reservist Receiving pay (age 60+) need to send a request to the National Personnel Records Center, 9700 Page Blvd, St Louis MO 63132-5200. For more detailed information, visit http://www.archives.gov/veterans/military-service-records/

CAN YOU EXPLAIN HOW APPLYING FOR RETROACTIVE JOINT CREDIT WILL WORK?

An important provision in the Joint Qualification System is that members can apply for retroactive joint credit. This applies to both active and reserve forces ... however, the timeframe for reservists extends further back - to implementation of Goldwaters-Nichols Act (1986). The retroactive provision for joint experience will run from Oct. 1, 2007, to Sept. 30, 2010. After that time a reserve component Airmen may not be eligible to self-nominate their past experiences. Experience gained after Oct. 1, 2007, will need to be submitted for consideration within one year from date of return.

HAS THE AWARDS AND DECORATIONS PROCESS CHANGED?

Yes.

Individual Mobilization Augmentees, unit and participating reservists are now able to submit decoration nominations online. Decorations currently eligible for online application include the Meritorious Service Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Achievement Medal and the Aerial Achievement Medal. Unit commanders assigned to Air Force Reserve Command can also request update of the Combat Readiness Medal, revoke a pending decoration or deny an Air Reserve Forces Meritorious Service Medal on myPers and then select Awards and Decorations.

HOW DO I ACCESS THE ONLINE DECORATION APPLICATION?

Airmen can access the online decoration application via myPers. They must have an active account to access this Reserve portal.

WHERE DOES A SPECIFIC DECORATION OR AWARD FALL IN ORDER OF PRECEDENCE?

Awards and decorations are listed in order of precedence from highest to lowest online at myPers.

WHEN SHOULD I WRITE MY CONGRESSMAN IF I HAVE A REQUEST OR COMPLAINT?

It is the right of every American citizen, military or civilian to communicate with his or her elected representatives at any time on any subject. People should evaluate what it is they want. For example, ARPC receives many inquires from senators and congressmen on behalf of military members simply requesting a copy of a document from their records, and they may do that, however this is time consuming and could take a week or more to go through formal channels. A phone call can have the document on its way the same day. Allow ARPC to work the problem first. People should find that it will expedite their needs.

For more information, contact:
HQ ARPC/DPTOSF
18420 E. Silver Creek Ave, B390, MS68
Buckley AFB CO 80011

Phone: 800-525-0102

There are many avenues to obtaining a document from personal records:

myPers
vMPF through the AF Portal
eBenefits

Can I update my DD Form 93, Record of Emergency Data, online?

Yes. You can now update your DD Form 93, virtual Record of Emergency Data, online at the virtual Military Personnel Flight or through the Air Force Portal (www.my.af.mil). If you need assistance logging on, call the Air Force Customer Service Center at 800-616-3775.

Please note - the vMPF can only service the following affiliations: Air Force Reserve (traditional, individual mobilization augmentee or active guard reserve), Air National Guard and active duty.

CAN I VIEW MY E-RECORDS IN ARMS FROM HOME?

The AFPC Secure settings for ARMS makes it viewable from .mil and .gov domains or other domains with a Common Access Card and reader. This setting supports military domains overseas that do not reflect a .mil with a reverse domain lookup. It works very well to support these overseas locations, but it may not work for some users from home.

HOW DO AIRMEN LOG INTO ARMS TO VIEW THE UPRG?

Log in to the Air Force Portal, using your Common Access Card, and click on "AFPC Secure Applications" on the left side. Once logged in, they'll have an ARMS MPF/CSS button and/or an ARMS Member button. MPF/CSS personnel (indicated on access listing) will have an ARMS MPF/CSS button. Each individual will view his/her record by an ARMS Member button. Access is from .mil or .gov addresses only (unless CAC-enabled from home).

HOW DO I CHECK FOR NETWORK ISSUES PREVENTING ARMS ACCESS?

If the "ARMS Member" button doesn't appear or was there and then disappears within AFPC Secure, it is usually a DNS issue and can be easily checked using the following instructions. This typically happens from a .mil location that is having network problems.

  • Go to AFPC Secure https://w45.afpc.randolph.af.mil/afpcsecurenet40/CheckPortal.aspx
  • If you don't see the ARMS Member button, go to the upper right hand corner of the page and click on the "Contact Us" link.
  • On the next page, scroll down to the bottom of the page on the right side and click on the .mil restricted access check.
  • On the Domain Lookup page there will be a box with three lines of data in it. Line 1 and line 3 should match.
  • The middle line should identify your network, which needs to be .mil or .gov for ARMS.
  • If line 1 and line 3 are different, contact your network shop to have them flush your DNS so they will sync up. If ARMS can't recognize your .mil or .gov network, you will not get access.

HOW DO NEW DOCUMENTS GET INTO THE RECORDS?

ARPC will scan all new documents created at the MPFs to ARMS - units send in via fax to 478-327-2209 or DSN 497-2209.

Questions should be directed to 800-525-0102.

HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE TO ACCESS ARMS ON A DAILY BASIS IF EVERYONE TRIES TO ACCESS IT ALL AT ONCE?

Since access is strict, the number of users accessing ARMS should not affect/weigh down the server. However, ARMS is Web based, so if the server is down, Airmen won't be able to access ARMS.

I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH A DOCUMENT (I.E. DOCUMENT LABELED WRONG, SOMEBODY ELSE’S DOCUMENT, ETC.) IN ARMS, HOW DO I FIX THIS?

Call the Total Force Service Center-Denver 800-525-0102 and include information, type of problem, item number and document ID.

I HAVE MPF/CSS ARMS ACCESS, AND I USED TO BE ABLE TO SEE THE ENTIRE UPRG. NOW, ALL I SEE ARE PERFORMANCE REPORTS. WHAT HAPPENED TO MY ACCESS?

We've created an option that will allow MPF/CSS Airmen to pull up only performance reports. When opening the "Single SSN" window, they should have a drop down menu in the Group ID block. Either select "U" for UPRG or "S1" for performance reports.

I LOG INTO AFPC SECURE, AND I DON’T HAVE AN ARMS BUTTON. HOW CAN I FIX THIS?

If AFPC Secure cannot verify an IP address is a .mil or .gov, the ARMS buttons will not be visible.

  • Reboot the PC and try again.
  • If still no ARMS button after rebooting, click the Contact Us link at the top right hand corner of the AFPC Secure page.
  • When the next page appears, click the .mil restricted access check at the bottom of the page.
  • The next page will show your IP address, Host Resolved As, and IP Resolved From Host As.
  • If any of these show unknown or the IP address does not match, you will not be able to see any type of ARMS buttons.
  • Contact comm/network folks to have them verify IP address.

NOTE: If you've changed assignments to ANG or Reserve Unit that has been converted and your record has been converted, you will not have an ARMS button until you have been gained by your CSS in MilPDS. Once you're gained and ARMS refreshes (Mondays and Wednesdays), you'll have an ARMS button.

NOTE: Airmen only have access to ARMS when they are currently affiliated with a converted base. Member buttons are based on a PAS identifier, used to determine current location. The PAS identifier populates the access accordingly and the button self-populates through an automatic update. ALL local MPFs have access now, and can service these Airmen as needed.

I’M TRYING TO VIEW/PRINT A DOCUMENT IN THE AUTOMATED RECORDS MANAGEMENT SYSTEM. I CAN VIEW/PRINT SOME, BUT I GET BLANK PAGES ON SOME AND MISSING PAGES ON OTHERS. HOW CAN I FIX THIS?

There are two possible solutions to this problem. Removing QuickTime from the system seems to be the best solution. Currently there are major compatibility issues with QuickTime and a multitude of Air Force applications; including ARMS.

QuickTime, under the Air Force Standard Desktop Configuration (SDC), attempts to take control of the TIF File association (regardless of what's manually selected in windows) and forces users to use the QT application as the default image viewer.

This is a "known" sporadic problem with QuickTime, but doesn't have anything to do with ARMS. Among many other incompatibility issues, it also makes it to where the user is unable to see the 2nd and 3rd page of the documents.

ARPC recommends helpdesk remove QuickTime from computer immediately. QT is being removed from the SDC base implementation software as well because of its conflicts with multiple Air Force applications. Proper TIF/TIFF association for ARMS is "Microsoft Office Document Imaging." If a blue Q appears when pulling a document Airmen'll need to have QuickTime Uninstalled. If Airmen HAVE to use Quick time, they can attempt to unassociate QT with TIFs by following the instructions below....

  • Go to My Computer - or Windows Explorer
  • Click on Tools
  • Folder Options
  • File Type
  • Find TIF and TIFF
  • Click Change
  • Select Microsoft Office Document Imaging Click Okay, Click Apply, Click Okay

WHAT DO I DO IF I RECEIVE A 404 ERROR?

If you get a 404 "Page Not Found" error when you click on the ARMS Member button, it involves using a common access card from a non-.mil location. These Airmen must use the Air Force Portal to access ARMS.

WHAT DOES “NULL” MEAN?

These documents are missing for one reason or another. If Airmen have the document, contact ARPC, and it will get put on ARMS.

WHAT IF AIRMEN ARE GAINED/LOST?

If at a converted base and the Airmen has a paper record, send to ARPC clearly marked "Reserve UPRG for conversion."

If base has not been converted and they gain someone with an e-Record, forward any new documents to ARPC - DO NOT CREATE A RECORD!

WHAT IF I CAN SEE ORDERS WITH OTHER SSNS?

There are supposed to be business rules that keep these documents on the master records, and not available for users to see. Contact ARPC and that order will be redacted.

WHAT IF I HAVE SOME ENTRIES CALLED “DOF”?

These are documents on fiche that need to be converted. Contact ARPC and those documents will be converted.

WHAT IS THE “CREATE MULTIPAGE DOCUMENT” FOR?

The purpose of the link is to allow users to pull/print/download an entire record in one TIF file. There is one problem with the create multipage document. In some instances, some documents loaded into ARMS may be a PDF file. If that's the case they will not download into the multipage document because it's a TIF file. In these cases Airmen will see a document in the file explaining that a particular document did not download into the multipage document. They will need to download those documents individually.

WHAT IS THE ARMS MEMBER DEPLOYED BUTTON?

It's a feature added for Airmen whose duty status shows as deployed in MilPDS. It enables them to view their ARMS record without having access to a .mil/.gov network, because deployed personnel do not always have .mil/.gov access. Even if an individual's record hasn't been converted yet, they will still have access. However, they will only have access while they're deployed and their duty status reflects as deployed. Once they return to their home station, they'll lose their "deployed" button.

WHAT TYPE OF FUNCTIONS CAN I PERFORM OR REPORTS CAN I PULL IN THE AUTOMATED RECORDS MANAGEMENT SYSTEM (ARMS)?

ARMS is a records storing system. Its only function is to store and retrieve records.

WHEN VIEWING A RECORD IN THE ARMS, IT APPEARS AS IF SOME OF THE DOCUMENTS ARE NO LONGER THERE?

Previously, in ARMS, each individual had access to all of his/her personnel records (that are scanned into ARMS) from the master personnel record and the UPRG.

Because of Privacy Act concerns, ARPC limited members access to just the UPRG. MPF/CSS access has not changed.

Within the military personnel records system, as defined in AFI 36-2608, there are different types of personnel record groups, mainly:

  • Unit Personnel Record Group, maintained/formerly maintained at base level, which contains temporary and permanent documents.
  • Master Personnel Record Group, maintained on ARMS, which contains permanent documents.

Some documents are maintained in both groups, such as OPRs and enlistment contracts. While other documents are maintained in only one group: such as SGLI and testing RIPs maintained in the UPRG; and AF Form 133, Oath of Office, and original Articles 15, maintained in the master record group. To obtain copies of documents that are in the master records, contact the ARPC contact center at 1-800-525-0102.

WHO WILL BE THE RECORD CUSTODIAN OF THE UPRG?

Right now the MPFs are the record custodians of the Unit Personnel Record Group. Once that record is digitized, ARPC will become the record custodian.

WHY WON’T DOCUMENTS OPEN?

If you have any problems opening your documents once you get into ARMS, check to see if your TIF file type association is correct.

When Office 2007 is loaded, it wipes out the file association for TIF to Microsoft Office Document Imaging. This is not a problem with ARMS but with the local computer. It has to be reset.

To check using XP or older Operating Systems:

Go to Windows Explorer, select "Tools," "Folder Options," "File Types" and scroll down in the left column to see if you have a TIF file type.

If not, follow the instructions below to get the problem fixed.

Go to Windows Explorer, select "Tools," "Folder Options," "File Types" and "New." Put "tif" in the box and then browse to locate the application. It is in: C:\program files\common\microsoft shared\MODI\12.0\MSPView.exe

If the "New" button is grey, administrator privileges are required.

To check using Vista operating system:

From Start go to Control Panel, Default Programs and click on "Associate file type or protocol with a program." Then, scroll down to "TIF" and highlight it and it will show what program it is associated with. To change it, click on the "Change Program" button at the top of the screen.

If this doesn't work, contact your local Client Server Administrator or Network Control Center where the network or e-mail account was created.

WILL RETIRED MEMBERS HAVE ACCESS TO THEIR RECORDS?

Once a member separates and/or retires they can access their entire master personnel file (which includes DD Form 214’s, NGB 22’s and evaluation reports) without a CaC through a Department of Veterans Affairs website called eBenefits. The website is https://www.ebenefits.va.gov.

First time users will need to register by clicking on the "Register" button. Please register for the PREMUIM account.

Once the account is established, they will have continued access to the website to retrieve their master personnel file. The eBenefits help desk number is 1-800-983-0937, please contact them for further help/instructions.

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT TO KNOW?

Because the Air Reserve Personnel Center (ARPC) does not provide members with documents out of their master personnel files; they are referred to eBenefits. So before members separate your units please education them on this extremely helpful tool.

WHAT EXACTLY IS IN A MEMBERS MASTER PERSONAL FILE? 

Anything that is in a members ARMS/PRDA record is considered their master personnel file. eBenefits pulls documents directly from ARMS to provide members on the website.

WHERE CAN SEPARATED/RETIRED MEMBERS FIND THEIR MEDICAL RECORDS?

Medical records are maintained through the Department of Veterans Affairs Record Management Center in St. Louis, Missouri. They can be reached at 1-888-533-4558. 

How do I make a FOIA request?

If you want to submit a FOIA inquiry, send a written request to the FOIA office where the record is located, describe the records you want as specifically as possible and tell us the upper limit you will be willing to pay. Furnish any facts or clues about the time, place, person, event, subject or other details of the information or records you want. That will help us decide where to search and determine what records pertain to your request. It can also save you and the government time and money, and you may get what you want faster. There is no special form to complete. You may mail it, hand-carry it, fax it, or send it electronically. Mark your request and envelope "FOIA."

WHAT IS THE COST FOR A FOIA REQUEST?

The FOIA allows fee charges based on the requestor's category. There are three categories: commercial (pay search, review and reproduction fees); educational, noncommercial scientific institution and news media (pay reproduction fees -- first two hours search and 100 pages provided at no cost); and others (pay search and reproduction fees -- first two hours search and 100 pages provided at no cost). The FOIA also allows waivers or reductions in fees if disclosing the information is in the public interest.

WHAT IS THE RESPONSE TIME TO THE REQUEST?

Normally, you can expect a response to your FOIA request within 20 working days from the date the proper FOIA office receives it. If a special situation exists, the FOIA office will contact you with a estimated completion date and explain the reason for delay. The Air Force works requests on a first-in, first-out basis.
What records are not provided?

The FOIA provides access to federal agency records (or parts of those records) except those protected from release by nine specific exemptions. These are the reason some Air Force records may not be released:

  1. Classified.
  2. Internal personnel rules and practices.
  3. Exempt by other statue.
  4. Commercial information that would cause competitive harm.
  5. Predecisional, deliberative information.
  6. Invasion of personal privacy.
  7. Complied for law enforcement purposes.
  8. Contained in or related to examination, operation or condition reports prepared by, on behalf of, or for the use of an agency responsible for the regulation or supervision of financial institutions.
  9. Geological and geophysical information and data, including maps, concerning wells.

You have the right to appeal all denial decisions within 60 days. Send appeals to the secretary of the Air Force through the office that initially denied you the information.

WHERE DO I SEND A FOIA REQUEST TO?

For fastest response times, the Air Force has decentralized the Air Force FOIA program. Air Reserve Personnel Center requests are handled through the FOIA office at DSN 847-3150 or 720-847-3150 or via email at arpc.dpxopfoia@us.af.mil.

No single office handles all FOIA requests. Every Air Force base has a FOIA office that can help you direct your request to the proper FOIA office. If you don't know which Air Force activity has the records you want, send your requirements to:

11 CS/SCSR (FOIA)
1000 Air Force Pentagon
Washington DC 20330-1000

HOW DO I GET A VA HOME LOAN ELIGIBILITY LETTER?

When applying for a Veterans Affairs home loan, the VA requires a home loan guarantee eligibility letter to document that Airmen have at least six years of honorable service.

To receive an elegibility letter, call the contact center at 800-525-0102.

CAN YOU EXPLAIN HOW RETROACTIVE JOINT CREDIT WILL WORK?

An important provision in the JQS is that Airmen can apply for retroactive joint credit. This applies to both active and reserve forces ... however, the timeframe for reservists extends further back - to implementation of Goldwater-Nichols Act of 1986. The retroactive provision for joint experience will run from Oct. 1, 2007 to Sept. 30, 2013. After that time a reservist may not be eligible to self-nominate their past experiences. Experience gained after Oct. 1, 2007 will need to be submitted for consideration within one year from date of return.

COULD RESERVE COMPONENT MEMBERS PLAY IN EITHER THE STANDARD OR EXPERIENCE-BASED JOINT DUTY ASSIGNMENT?

Yes, a reserve component Airmen might apply for joint credit through either the standard or the experienced-based path. Currently, the reserve components do not have any billets on the Joint Duty Assignment List, however, sometimes a reservist is assigned to a JDAL position. Thus, a reservist might begin in a standard joint duty assignment and acquire cumulative experience that may at some point be converted to points via the experience-based path.

DO ALL JOINT JOBS COUNT AS JOINT? (DO THEY ALL COUNT IF THEY ARE AT A JOINT LOCATION OR DO THEY NOT COUNT IF THEY ARE DOING AF WORK? WHO DECIDES?)

No, not all jobs in joint agencies or activities will count as "joint." The preponderance of the duties have to relate to the definition of joint matters. An example of a job that might fit in this category would be an MEO instructor working at DEOMI. Although the agency might be joint, or staffed by individuals from the other services, it doesn't mean the work they perform is "joint."

To answer the second part of that question ... a position may be joint even if the work being performed is in a service billet (which wouldn't count now under the standard joint duty assignment), as long as those duties fit the new definition of joint matters.

Who Decides?

Well that's a tough question. The Joint Qualification System is set up to have review at successive levels. The service is responsible for reviewing self-nominations from the system and validating at their level it is joint. From there the package goes to the Joint Staff who is responsible for reviewing, validating, preparing the packages for a panel to review and approving or denying the requested joint credit.

DOES THE JQS REPLACE THE CURRENT JOINT ASSIGNMENT SYSTEM?

No, the JQS operationalizes the concepts and strategic vision for Joint Officer Development and JOM. The JQS is a total force initiative - allowing reserve component officers to gain an equivalent level of joint credit based upon an accumulation of joint experiences.

  • JQS is NOT an "express lane" to joint qualification.
  • JQS continues to require the services to maintain the Section 664 tour length average for officers serving in [traditional] Joint Duty Assignment List positions (36 months for O-6 & below; 24 months for general/flag officers)

HOW DO WE APPLY FOR JOINT DUTY CREDIT?

OSD has created a Web site which allows officers to self-nominate their experiences.

Answer several prescreening questions on this site. Based on responses, Airmen may be granted access to the self-nomination module. After gaining access, they will fill out information by filling in text blocks or selecting from drop down menus. When they've completed filling in the information, this will create their Joint Experience Summary, and they will be directed to provide documentation which shows proof of experiences. Documentation may come in the form of CED orders, awards, decorations, evaluation reports, etc.

When Airmen complete those steps, they will submit their information and a notification will be sent to the Air Force Reserve point of contact. A personnel representative will extract the information from the system and will review for points. Once the personnel rep reviews supporting documentation and validates experiences, the information will be packaged (probably quarterly) and staffed to the Joing Staff or OSD for review and approval. Once ARPC receives approval, they will send the Airman an update. Because of the MilPDS moratorium and projected DIMHRS implementation, it may be a while before the official personnel record can be updated. However, both the Air Force Reserve and the Joint Staff will maintain a record of the joint experience points/level earned.

HOW MANY OFFICERS DO WE HAVE IN JOINT POSITIONS/JOINT ACTIVITIES?

Almost 800.

HOW WILL NATIONAL WAR COLLEGE, ICAF AND ARMY AND NAVY WAR COLLEGES WORK IN THE WAY OF POINTS SINCE THEY ARE JOINT?

Points are not awarded to JPME granting schools. JPME is one facet needed to gain joint qualification. It's a "must have." The other facet is joint experience which is gained through an assignment or a deployment(s). Other education/training, and participation in exercises is a third category. Knowledge gained through this third category may also provide points, however, joint experience points (as is JPME) are mandatory.

Should this change how we assign individuals to joint jobs in the Air Force Reserve?

Absolutely! As part of a larger analysis of what this program means to the Air Force Reserve, Airmen should be careful how and when reserve component members are assigned to duty in jobs at the combatant commands, Defense Agencies, Joint Staff, etc.

Should this change how we determine who attends IDE/SDE or AJPME?

Certainly! Determining who attends IDE/SDE or AJPME as part of a larger analysis of how this program may impact other human resource programs and initiatives is something ARPC will begin to tackle. This is especially true as all in-resident Senior Service Colleges have been certified as Joint PME Level II institutions.

SINCE MANY DEPLOYMENTS ARE “JOINT” IN NATURE, HOW WILL THOSE EXPERIENCES BE WORKED INTO THE CRITERIA?

It does not matter how or where an experience occurred as long as members have documentation to prove that they participated in an activity where the preponderance of the duties pertained to joint matters. Documentation may come in the form of CED orders, awards, decorations, evaluation reports, etc.
What are the biggest challenges the JQS presents for the Air Force Reserve?

The Joint Qualification System presents many challenges for the reserve components as the tracking of joint experiences is new to them.

One issue of great importance is the updating of personnel records. Things like joint experience points, environment/intensity factor, and joint qualification levels have not been captured before. In addition, ARPC has noted several items in the current system values that need updating (JSO nomenclature, JPME, etc). They have worked with AF/A1 and AFPC to ensure Air Force Reserve specific requirements were drafted into a systems change request. They were unsuccessful in getting the MilPDS moratorium lifted, but they know what has to be done for the future DIMHRS build.

WHAT ARE THE TWO EXPERIENCE PATHS AND THE POINT ACCRUAL FORMULA?

The first path is the standard joint duty assignment (S-JDA); the other path is an experienced-based assignment (E-JDA), or a combination of assignments. The S-JDA primarily applies to the active component although a reservist might encumber a traditional joint duty assignment. Both paths require JPME II. The main difference is that a S-JDA requires a full time member (for O-6 and below) to perform three years for active component or six years for reserve componenet of duty or (for general and field grade officers) two years for active component or 4 years reserve component officers in a Joint Duty Assignment List billet. Joint experience in the E-JDA path, while dependent on months served, is actually converted to experience points (as experiences may be cumulative).

The point accrual formula represents a model used to determine E-JDA points. Basically, a joint qualification level = JPME + experience points + other points. Joint experience points = the number of months x the environment factor (3 = combat, 2 = non-combat, 1 = steady state). Other points can be derived from other education, training or participation in joint exercises. Depending on their role in an exercise, they may earn 1, 2 or 3 points (1 = participant, 2 = planner, 3 = leader). While this all seems cut and dry, ARPC is seeking clarification on this point system to help avoid confusion when they start tracking joint experience.

WHAT CONSTITUTES JOINT DUTY?

Joint experience includes any assignment or duty with direct relevance to the revised definition of joint matters IAW Title 10, Section 668. Joint Matters can be defined as follows:

Matters relating to the achievement of unified action by multiple military forces in operations conducted across domains such as land, sea or air, in space, or in the information environment, including matters relating to:

  1. National Military Strategy.
  2. Strategic planning and contingency planning.
  3. Command and control of operations under unified command.
  4. National security planning with other departments and agencies of the United States.
  5. Combined operations with military forces of allied nations.

In the context of joint matters, the term "multiple military forces" refers to forces that involve participants from the armed forces and one or more of the following:

  1. Other departments or agencies of the United States.
  2. The military forces or agencies of other countries.
  3. Nongovernmental persons or entities.

"Before Oct. 1, 2007" is the legacy definition: Matters relating to the integrated employment of land, sea and air forces, including matters relating to national military strategy, strategic and contingency planning, and command and control of combat operations under unified command.

So, what constitutes joint matters depends on timing. With the new definition, two parts are essential for determining if the experience will be considered joint: who the experience was with, and what the experience involved.

WHAT DOES GAINING JOINT CERTIFICATION DO FOR ME?

Certainly having joint experience makes Airmen more desirable ... as does command experience, HQ staff experience, experience in different commands or organizations, and so on. As we transition to a more total force environment, it will become more important for reserve component officers to have the same qualifications as their active component counterparts. Having joint experience will become one of the "whole person" discriminators in the future; it will play a role in many personnel decisions, such as assignments, training, development and yes, possibly even promotions.

WHAT IS THE JQS?

Statutory changes in the 2007 National Defense Authorization Act directed the secretary of Defense to establish different levels of joint qualification, as well as criteria for each level. The OSD, Joint Staff, U.S. Joint Forces Command and the military services collaborated to produce the new Joint Qualification System, or JQS. The JQS acknowledges joint experiences, introduces a point accrual formula (which takes into account the environment and intensity where an officer works in the joint environment), establishes four qualification levels and provides the opportunity for reserve component officers to earn joint points and qualifications.

WHAT IS THE MANAGEMENT/EXECUTION PROPOSAL?

On the surface it appears the Air Force Reserve needs a comprehensive list of all of joint billets and a determination of which ones count; it also needs to be more judicious in filling PME quotas and assignments, and it needs a plan to tie this program into human resources, and specifically, force development programs.

Overall a bulk of the work will be handled at ARPC (for O-6s and below). Additionally, ARPC sees REG playing a part in support of general officers and select O-6s. Policy and procedures will probably be split between AF/REP and AFRC/A1, with execution residing at the personnel center.

What laws, regulations or instructions can I review to learn more?

The Fiscal 2007 National Defense Authorization Act (Section 516b) provides the legal impetus for the JQS.

"The Secretary of Defense shall establish different levels of joint qualification, as well as the criteria for qualification at each level. Each level shall, as a minimum, have both joint education criteria and joint experience criteria. The purpose of establishing such qualification levels is to ensure a systematic, progressive, career-long development of officers in joint matters and to ensure that officers serving as general and flag officers have the requisite experience and education to be highly proficient in joint matters."

In March 2007, OSD published the Joint Qualification System Implementation Plan and forwarded that to Congress. The implementation plan "establishes a joint force management infrastructure as dynamic as the environment in which our joint forces operate ... this plan describes a four-level JQS that provides a path for attaining joint qualification through either a traditional joint duty assignment or by accumulating an equivalent level of joint experience, education, and training over the course of a career."

Policy is captured in Department of Defense Instruction 1300.19, DOD Joint Officer Management Program, and procedures are to be captured in Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Instruction 1330.05, Joint Officer Management Program Procedures.

WHO IS ELIGIBLE TO EARN JOINT DUTY CREDIT?

According to CJCSI 1330.05, the JQS applies to OSD, Joint Staff, Chairmand of the Joint Chiefs of Staff-controlled activities, Combatant Commands, Defense Agencies, joint activities, military departments, NATO and U.S. elements of Combined Commands.

The JQS applies to all joint positions graded O-1 thru O-6; all military officers O-1 thru O-6; and including all active component and reserve component officers, except as follows:

  • Commissioned Warrant Officers.
  • Retired Commissioned Officers.
  • Officers of the Coast Guard.
  • Officers on an inactive status list.
  • Officers in the Retired Reserve.
  • The JQS also applies to general and flag officer positions and officers; however, CJCSI 1331.01 governs the management of general and flag officers.

WILL JQS GENERATE REPORTING REQUIREMENTS FOR THE AIR FORCE RESERVE?

Yes, according to the DODI, the reserve components will be required to report the following:

  • Number of officers, by grade, who have earned full joint credit from retroactive credit.
  • Number of officers, by grade, who have completed AJPME.
  • Number of officers who have completed JPME II via JFSC, ICAF/NWC, and Service schools.
  • Number of officers designated in the previous fiscal year as Level II, III, or IV.
  • Total number of officers, holding level II, III or IV.
  • Other information, as required.

WILL JQS REQUIRE A MORE COMPLETE PROGRAM FOR THE AIR FORCE RESERVE?

ARPC is not sure at this time, but it is highly probable. With any new program, ARPC tries to anticipate what effects the program may have and how the new program might fit into current efforts. With the tracking of joint experience, ARPC will want to consider its effects on other personnel programs, such as assignments, promotions, training, force development and so on. Additionally, they must look at senior level and future requirements to understand what experiences need to be developed in reserve component officers. The effort to define an appropriate Joint Officer Management Program for the Air Force Reserve will be a collaborative and on-going effort.

DOES A CIVILIAN EMPLOYER HAVE TO GIVE RESERVISTS TIME OFF TO PERFORM MILITARY DUTY?

The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA) normally requires employers to excuse military members from work to attend to official military duty. In most cases, the employer must treat the employee as if he or she has not been absent. Unless precluded by military necessity, the employee must give prior notice to the employer.

For more information about USERRA, we recommend the following Web sites: www.dol.gov and www.esgr.mil. You may also contact the National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve by calling 800-336-4590.

HOW DOES A FEDERAL CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE, WHO IS ALSO A RESERVIST, REFLECT TRAVEL WHEN HE OR SHE PERFORMS MILITARY DUTY DURING A CIVILIAN TDY?

We recommend the Airman keep both duties separate, reflecting this on both travel vouchers. Example: In the middle of performing temporary duty in Denver in his civilian capacity, the Airman does a one-day special tour as a military reservist, at nearby Buckley AFB. In this example, the Airman would indicate on his military voucher that he was already in the local area as a result of the civilian TDY and the amount of time he performed duty. On the civilian travel voucher, the Airman should indicate that he was performing military duty for the one day at his TDY location.

I’VE BEEN SELECTED TO ATTEND AIR COMMAND AND STAFF COLLEGE IN RESIDENCE. DOES THE REQUIREMENT FOR CREDITORS TO REDUCE MY INTEREST RATES TO 6 PERCENT APPLY?

The reduction of interest to 6 percent, as provided in the Servicemembers' Civil Relief Act, applies to any entry into active duty service, including a school tour to attend PME. The reduction, however, is not automatic. The Airman must be "materially affected" by entry into active duty. An Airman is materially affected, for example, when he or she earns less money after entry into active duty than he or she did as a civilian employee. It is also important to remember that the requirement to reduce interest rates does not apply to federally-guaranteed student loans.

IF I AM A CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE IN AN AIR FORCE OFFICE, CAN I ALSO BE ATTACHED TO THAT OFFICE AS AN AIR FORCE RESERVIST?

No. Occasionally, Air Reserve Technicians (ARTs) fill the same position both as a civilian and a military reservist, but these positions are defined and authorized by statute. In other circumstances, AFI 36-2115 applies. It states, "If a member is an employee of the Department of Defense (non-ART), then do not assign the member to the same position or general area as a Federal employee. The same supervisor should not be the rating, endorsing, or reviewing official on either the military or civilian appraisal."AFI 36-2115, Table 1.1, Rule 21.

What assistance is available to Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) members subject to mobilization?

IRR members who have been notified that they are subject to mobilization are entitled to legal assistance at any Air Force legal office on a limited basis. AFI 51-504, paragraph 1.3.8, provides:

For members of the reserve components subject to federal mobilization (National Guard, Ready Reserves, Contract ROTC Cadets) in an inactive status, provide mobilization- and deployment-related legal assistance. Subject areas include wills, advance medical directives, powers of attorney, protections and responsibilities under the [Servicemembers'] Civil Relief Act and Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, and notary services. This list is not exhaustive. SJAs retain discretion to determine whether the circumstances of a reserve component member warrant the provision of legal assistance to ensure readiness for mobilization and deployment. Provide no other legal assistance to members of the reserve components until the member is on federal active duty under Title 10, United States Code[.] ... Dependants of reserve component personnel are not authorized legal assistance except during the time the reserve component member is on federal active duty under Title 10, United States Code[.]

Upon mobilization you will be entitled to full legal assistance in any Air Force legal office on the same footing as any other Airman on active duty.

WHAT ENTITLEMENT DOES A DIVORCED SPOUSE HAVE TO MILITARY RETIREMENT PAY?

The Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA) is a law Congress enacted in 1982 to provide benefits to certain former spouses of military members. Among other provisions, it allows state courts to divide disposable military retired pay as marital property upon divorce under certain circumstances. Disposable military retired pay is a servicemember's monthly retired pay minus qualified deductions.

The USFSPA does not establish a right to any specific amount of retirement pay that a former spouse may be awarded in a divorce settlement. The decision whether to award retirement pay is solely in the discretion of the state court and the amount awarded will vary. There is no required federal formula that specifies how retired pay will be divided.

WHAT MILITARY BENEFITS ARE AVAILABLE TO DIVORCED SPOUSES UNDER THE USFSPA?

The benefits available depend on the former spouse's "category."

A spouse that passes the "20/20/20 test" (Airman has completed at least 20 years of creditable service; the spouse has been married to the military member for at least 20 years at date of final decree of divorce; and the period of marriage overlaps the period of creditable service by at least 20 years) can receive commissary and Army and Air Force Exchange Service privileges and full medical benefits. These benefits will be suspended if the spouse remarries; however, they will be revived if the subsequent marriage is terminated.

A "20/20/15" spouse (same requirement for 20 years of marriage and 20 years of service and at least 15 years of overlap between the marriage and the creditable service) may be entitled to full military medical benefits for a one-year period after which the spouse may purchase a DOD-negotiated conversion health policy. These benefits will be suspended if the spouse remarries and will not be revived unless the subsequent marriage is annulled. Former spouses of Airmen or retirees may have additional benefits under the Survivor's Benefit Plan (SBP), certain separation incentive programs, and in certain domestic abuse situations.

AM I AUTOMATICALLY ELIGIBLE FOR RETIRED PAY IF I AM AGE 60?

No. An officer must have earned 20 years of satisfactory service before becoming eligible for retired pay. They do not need secretary of the Air Force waiver to be credited with points and service up to your 20th year.

CAN I CONTINUE TO SERVE PAST AGE 60 WITHOUT SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE APPROVAL?

Yes, but only for pay without secretary of the Air Force approval for accruing additional service credit.

DO I HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL I'M 62 TO DRAW RETIRED PAY?

No, the minimum age to be eligible for retired pay remains age 60. (Officers must also have 20 years of qualifying service and not be eligible, under any other provision of law, to retired pay from an armed force)

HOW DO I GET APPROVAL FROM THE SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE TO CONTINUE TO ACCRUE SERVICE CREDIT BEYOND AGE 60?

Submit a request not later than six months before turning age 60 through command channels.

HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM ELIGIBLE TO RETIRE IN GRADE WITH ONLY TWO-YEARS TIG?

The secretary of the Air Force authorized the Air Force Reserve to reduce the three-year TIG requirement to two years for certain officers. The authorization applies to Reserve lieutenant colonels who are affected by Base Realignment and Closure, Program Budget Decision 720 and other force structure changes. It also applies to all colonels, and all eligible AGR and ART personnel. The number of officers who may apply is limited to 2 percent of the strength authorized for that fiscal year for officers in an active status in that grade.

NOTE: Limitation for lieutenant colonels for BRAC, PBD 720, and other force structure changes does not apply to AGR lieutenant colonel applicants.

I AM A CHAPLAIN; HOW DOES THIS CHANGE AFFECT ME?

With this change, the mandatory separation age for chaplains is 62 unless requested and approved for an MSD extension until a date not to exceed 67th birthday.

Chaplains must also have secretary of the Air Force approval to accrue service credit beyond age 60.

I AM A MEMBER OF THE HEALTH PROFESSIONS; HOW DOES THIS CHANGE AFFECT ME?

Answer same as for chaplains.

IF I RETIRE AT AGE 60, HOW MUCH TIME IN GRADE (TIG) MUST I HAVE TO RETIRE IN GRADE?

Majors and below: To be credited with satisfactory service in an officer grade of major or below, a person must have served satisfactorily in that grade for not less than six months.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I AM PROMOTED AT AGE 59½?

If officer submits a retirement request at age 60, it is a voluntary retirement and they must have three years (or two years, if eligible and approved under secretary of the Air Force authorization described in A4) satisfactory service in grade to retire in that grade.

AS A MEMBER OF THE RESERVE, AM I SUBJECT TO THE UNIFORM CODE OF MILITARY JUSTICE WHILE IN A NONDUTY STATUS?

The UCMJ applies only to acts of misconduct committed by a reservist when in duty status. However, an off-duty reservist can be ordered to duty for purposes of facing discipline for a UCMJ violation committed when the reservist was previously on duty.

HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM ELIGIBLE FOR PROMOTION?

ENLISTED

If you meet all the basic requirements in AFI 36-2502, Chapter 4, Table 4.2, Unit Vacancy Promotion Criteria.

This includes:

  1. Occupy a higher graded position and recommendation for promotion by supervisor through unit commander.
  2. Satisfactory participation both fiscal year and R/R year.
  3. Attain the appropriate skill-level for grade.
  4. Meet the minimum time in grade/time-in-service/satisfactory service.
  5. Complete the correct level of PME.
  • Rank -- TIG (months) -- TIS (years) -- Satisfactory Service (years) -- PME Requirement
  • Amn/A1C -- 6 -- N/A -- N/A -- N/A
  • SrA -- 8 -- N/A -- 1 -- N/A
  • SSgt -- 12 -- N/A -- 4 -- NCO prep; NCO Ldrshp; Amn Ldrshp; NCO Orientation
  • TSgt -- 18 -- N/A -- 5 -- N/A
  • MSgt -- 24 -- 8 -- 8 -- Cmnd NCO Academy
  • SMSgt -- 24 -- 10 -- 11 Sr NCO Academy
  • CMSgt -- 24 -- 10 -- 14 -- Chief Leadership Course or Chief Orientation Course

For Extended Promotion Program, all the above requirements must be met except the requirement for occupying a higher graded position. Promotion to TSgt only, and satisfactory service requirement increases to 16 yrs.

For Promotion Enhancement Program - Airmen must meet all the above eligibility criteria except being in a higher graded position - you must be blocked from promotion. The eligibility cutoff date is Sept. 30 each year. If all eligibility criteria are met, your supervisor may nominate you using a letter endorsed by your commander and program manager. The board meets in September. For information, consult the PEP guidelines here.

OFFICERS

You must meet the minimum requirements found in AFI 36-2504. Primarily you are required to meet minimum time in grade. For Position Vancancy, you must be exceptionally well qualified, occupy a funded higher graded position, and receive the recommendation of your senior rater.

DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR RECORDS ARE?

We have received feedback from various conference attendees that their military records cannot be located. You can contact ARPC within 90 to 120 days after assignment to an Individual Mobilization Augmentee (IMA) position to verify that your records have been received at this headquarters. There is a possibility that records are being sent elsewhere erroneously, and we wouldn't know until we were contacted or had to review the record. The sooner we identify these missing records the faster we can trace their whereabouts and give them to the right location. Below is an overview of the records procedure.

When you are released from active duty and transferred to the Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard, your master personnel record are transferred electronically to HQ ARPC. The master personnel record contains all permanent military personnel documents such as the DD Form 214, DD Form 4, orders, officer performance reports, etc. ARPC maintains the master personnel record for all ANG and Reserve members regardless of status. The officer selection folder (OSF) is also forwarded to HQ ARPC (Promotion Secretariat Division), and ARPC maintains those for ANG and Reserve members. Field personnel records will also be transferred to this headquarters, ARPC if you are assigned to an IMA position, to a nonparticipating reserve section, or to the retired reserve section (members eligible for pay at age 60).

If you are being transferred to a Reserve or ANG unit, your field records will be sent to your unit of assignment. The field personnel record contains military personnel documents that are used at the unit level. Medical records for members assigned to the nonparticipating reserve section will be forwarded to the Veterans Affairs in St. Louis, Mo.

If you were discharged and started drawing pay at age 60 before Oct. 1, 2004, your records were forwarded to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC), St. Louis, Mo. You can contact National Personnel Records Center by calling 314-801-0800 to obtain documents from your record. If you were discharged or started drawing retired pay at 60 after Oct. 1, 2004, ARPC still maintains your field and master records.

WHERE CAN I GET COPY OF MY MILITARY PERSONNEL DOCUMENTS?

Copies of your Air Force military personnel documents can be obtained from various offices depending on your current or past Air Force military affiliation. If you are:

Discharged or retired receiving pay from active duty, AF Reserve or Air National Guard after Oct. 1, 2004 then your personnel records are located at the National Personnel Records Center, 9700 Page Ave, St. Louis MO 63132. They can be contacted by calling 314-801-0800 or fax your request to 314-801-9195. Be sure to include your name, social security number and service number (if applicable), date of birth, service dates, place of service, and requested documents or information when calling for or faxing a request.

Discharged or retired receiving pay from active duty, then contact AFPC. The preferred method for requesting information is to go to the National Personnel Records Center home page and complete the Standard Form 180.

A Mobilization Augmentee, nonparticipating reservist or retired or discharges awaiting pay at age 60, send your request to HQ ARPC/DPT, 18420 E. Silver Creek Ave, Bldg 390, MS68, Buckley AFB, CO 80011 or call 800-525-0102.

Assigned either to the Reserve or Air National Guard, contact your unit supporting Military Personnel Flight.

DOES THE ACTIVE DUTY SERVICE HAVE TO BE CONSECUTIVE?

No, the active-duty service does not have to be consecutive. Airmen just need an aggregate (cumulative) of 90 days active duty service in a fiscal year.

DOES THE LAW THAT REDUCES THE RESERVE RETIRED PAY AGE APPLY TO ACTIVE DUTY SERVICE PERFORMED BEFORE THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE LAW?

No. Only the active-duty service that is performed after Jan. 28, 2008 (the date the law was signed) is credited toward reducing the Reserve retired pay age. It does not apply to regular component active-duty service.

I AM IN THE AIR NATIONAL GUARD AND WAS CALLED UP BECAUSE OF A NATIONAL EMERGENCY. DOES THIS SERVICE COUNT?

Yes. Creditable service includes service under a call to active service authorized by the president or the secretary of Defense under section 502(f) of title 32 for purposes of responding to a national emergency declared by the president or supported by federal funds. Orders must cite the authority and circumstances of the national emergency.

I MADE AN RCSBP ELECTION WHEN I RECEIVED MY 20-YEAR LETTER. WHEN WILL THE PREMIUMS BE WITHHELD FROM MY PAY?

Airmen start paying Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan premiums as soon as retired pay begins.

IF I SERVE 180 DAYS ON ACTIVE DUTY DURING A FISCAL YEAR, I AM AUTHORIZED TO REDUCE MY RETIRED PAY AGE BELOW AGE 60 BY SIX MONTHS. DOES THE DATE HAVE TO BE EXACTLY SIX MONTHS BEFORE MY 60TH BIRTHDAY? CAN I MAKE THE EFFECTIVE DATE LATER (I.E. AGE 60 DATE IS DEC. 30; BACK THE DATE SIX MONTHS WOULD BE JUNE 30. CAN I ELECT A LATER DATE?)?

Yes. The retired pay effective date can be on or after the authorized date (in the example, the Airman could elect any date on or after June 30).

IF I WAS ON ACTIVE DUTY WHEN THE LAW WAS SIGNED JAN. 28, 2008, WILL ALL THIS ACTIVE DUTY SERVICE COUNT TOWARD THE REDUCTION?

Only the active-duty service performed after Jan. 28, 2008 can be credited toward the reduced retired pay age.

IF MY RETIRED PAY AGE IS REDUCED BELOW AGE 60, WILL I RECEIVE MEDICAL BENEFITS ON THE RETIRED PAY EFFECTIVE DATE?

No. Medical benefits are not authorized until age 60.

IS THERE ANY REDUCTION IN THE AMOUNT OF MY RETIRED PAY ANNUITY IF RETIREMENT IS TAKEN EARLY?

No. The retired pay formulas remain the same and the reduced retired pay age will not affect the annuity.

IS THERE LEGISLATION PENDING TO MAKE THE LAW RETROACTIVE BACK TO SEPT. 11, 2001?

ARPC is tracking legislation so far there has been several proposal but attempts to pass legislation to make it retroactive have been unsuccessful.

WHAT IS THE MINIMUM AGE I CAN RECEIVE RESERVE RETIRED PAY?

The reduced retired pay age cannot be reduced below age 50.

WHAT TYPE OF ACTIVE DUTY APPLIES?

Service on active duty pursuant to a call or order to active duty under a provision of law referred to in section 10 USC 101(a)(13)(B) or under section 12301(d). To clarify 10 USC 101(a)(13)(B), this is involuntary active duty performed under the following Sections: 688 (Secretarial), 12301(a) (Full Mobilization), 12302 (Partial Mobilization), 12304 (Presidential Reserve Call-up), 12305 (Stop Loss), or 12406 (domestic and federal emergencies--applies to ANG).

WILL I RECEIVE AN ID CARD ON THE RETIRED PAY EFFECTIVE DATE?

Yes. Airmen are authorized a DD Form 2 Retired (Blue) ID card. However, there will be no medical coverage authorized. Airmen will have to get a new ID when they turn age 60 that will authorize medical benefits.

ARE THERE ANY EXCEPTIONS FOR ELIGIBILITY?

If Airmen are eligible for the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program (as defined in Chapter 89 of Title 5 U.S.C) or currently covered under FEHB, either under their own eligibility or through a family member, they are excluded from purchasing the restructured TRS plan.

CAN I BE TERMINATED FROM COVERAGE DUE TO NON-PAYMENT?

Payment is due no later than the 30th day of each month. It will apply to the following month of coverage. Failure to pay monthly premiums on time will result in termination of coverage, but Airmen must still pay any overdue amounts. (This may result in up to two months of overdue premium payments.) The government pursues collection action for overdue and delinquent premiums and may notify the Airmen's commander and collect overdue and delinquent amounts from National Guard or Reserve pay. Termination of coverage due to non-payment will result in a TRS purchase lockout for one year or until overdue premiums are paid, whichever is longer.

DO I HAVE TO HAVE MY FAMILY ENROLLED IN DEERS TO PARTICIPATE IN TRS?

To participate in TRS, Airmen and their family members must be registered in Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). If not already registered, Airman can go to the nearest MPF - DEERS/RAPIDS location or call the Defense Manpower Data Center Support Office at 800-538-9552 or visit www.Tricare.osd.mil/ to update their information or register.

HOW CAN I PAY FOR MY COVERAGE?

Premiums can be paid by check, money order or cashier's check (payable to the regional contractor), or by Visa®/MasterCard®. After the initial premium payment, the regional contractor will bill the Airmen by the 10th of each month. Payments are due no later than the 30th of each month, and payments are applied to the following month of coverage. Do not miss payment; failure to pay overdue amounts by the deadline will result in termination of coverage and debt collection.

HOW DO I CHANGE MY TRS COVERAGE WHEN I HAVE A QUALIFYING CHANGE OF EVENT?

To change the TRS coverage, download a new TRS Request Form from the Guard and Reserve Web Portal, complete the form, and submit it to the regional contractor (postmarked) within 60 days of the qualifying life event. The change in coverage is effective the date the qualifying life event occurred.

HOW DO I DISENROLL WHEN I HAVE A CHANGE IN STATUS (ACTIVE DUTY)?

When Airmen are activated they and their family become eligible for Tricare (without premiums) and the TRS coverage is automatically terminated.

HOW DO I PURCHASE THE PLAN?

Once qualify, Airmen may purchase the plan at any time throughout the year, there are no tiers or open seasons. Qualifying for and purchasing TRS is a 2-step process:

Step 1: Qualify 

  1. Log on to the Guard and Reserve Web Portal. 
  2. Click on the "Tricare Reserve Select" box. 
    1. Select the type of coverage to purchase: TRS Member-Only or TRS Member-and-Family
    2. Certify that they are not eligible for or enrolled in the FEHB program 
    3. Select when they want their coverage to begin
  3. Print and sign the TRS Request Form (DD Form 2896-1).

Step 2: Purchase

Mail or fax the completed TRS Request Form along with the first month's premium payment to the regional contractor by Sept 30.

HOW DO I VOLUNTARY DISENROLL FROM TRS?

Airmen may choose to disenroll at any time but do not just stop making payments. They must take the following action to end coverage:

  1. Log onto the Guard and Reserve Web Portal.
  2. Complete the TRS Request Form.
  3. Print and mail the completed TRS Request Form to the regional contractor.

A one-year TRS purchase lockout will apply if Airmen voluntarily disenroll from TRS, which means they will not be able to purchase TRS coverage for up to one year. If they do not take action to disenroll and simply stop making premium payments, the coverage terminates. However, they are still responsible for any premium amounts that are due before the date they were officially terminated from TRS.

IS THERE ANY SURVIVOR COVERAGE IN THE EVENT OF MY PASSING AS A MEMBER OF THE SELECTIVE RESERVE?

If a National Guard and Reserve member is covered by TRS on the day of his or her death, surviving family members may purchase or continue TRS coverage for an additional six months from the date of the Airmen's death. 

  • If TRS Member-and-Family coverage is in effect at the time of death, DEERS will automatically convert the TRS Member-and-Family coverage to TRS survivor coverage.
  • If TRS Member-Only coverage is in effect at the time of death, the coverage will terminate, and survivors may purchase TRS survivor coverage within 60 days.
  • Survivors are responsible for paying appropriate monthly premiums.

ONCE ENROLLED CAN I MAKE ANY CHANGES IN COVERAGE?

Airmen may change the type of TRS coverage, TRS Member-Only or TRS Member-and-Family, with a qualifying life event:

  • Marriage.
  • Birth or adoption.
  • Placement of child in the legal custody of the member by order of the court.
  • Divorce or annulment.
  • Death of a spouse or family member.
  • Family member loses eligibility (e.g. child turns 21 or 23 if enrolled in college).

WHAT ACTION DO I HAVE TO TAKE WHEN RELEASED FROM ACTIVE DUTY AFTER BEING ACTIVATED?

When Airmen are deactivated and lose eligibility for Tricare (without premiums), they may purchase TRS with no break in coverage as long as they requalify. Submit the completed TRS Request Form with a premium payment postmarked no later than 60 days after the loss of the Tricare coverage. TRS coverage begins on the day after the loss of other Tricare coverage.

WHAT DETERMINES MY MONTHLY PREMIUMS?

Monthly premiums are determined by the type of coverage purchased:

TRS Member-Only or TRS Member-and-Family. TRS premiums are adjusted annually effective Jan 1.

  • TRS Member-Only coverage is currently $81 per month.
  • TRS Member-and-Family coverage is currently $253 per month.

WHAT DOES TRICARE RESERVE SELECT PLAN COVER?

TRS includes routine outpatient care (doctors' office visits); inpatient care (hospitalization); urgent and emergency care, including ambulance services; family health care, including preventive screenings and immunizations; maternity services; behavioral health care, including partial hospitalization and residential treatment; annual eye exams; laboratory and radiology services; durable medical equipment and supplies; and prescription drug coverage.

WHAT HAPPENS TO MY COVERAGE AND ELIGIBILITY IF I LEAVE THE SELECTED RESERVE?

TRS coverage will also be automatically terminated if Airmen leave the Selected Reserve. They may purchase TRS coverage again if they requalify.

WHAT IF I NEED TO MAKE A CHANGE AND IT’S NOT A QUALIFYING CHANGE OF EVENT?

Changes to TRS coverage that don't involve a change in family composition (e.g., eligibility for other health coverage) can be made at any time during the enrollment in TRS.

WHAT IS THE ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENT?

To be eligible to purchase coverage, an Airmen must be serving in the Selected Reserve on the first day of coverage and must remain in the Selected Reserve for the entire period covered. There is no limitation on how long they may obtain coverage as long as qualification requirements are met.

WHAT IS TRS?

TRS is a premium-based health plan that is available to members of the Selected Reserve (unit assigned and IMA members) at 28 percent of the premium cost. Previously, premiums were as much as 85 percent of the premium cost. TRS offers coverage similar to Tricare Standard (and Tricare Extra) with the active duty family member deductibles and cost shares applied to both the Selected Reserve member and family members under the TRS plan.

WHEN DOES MY COVERAGE BEGIN?

Coverage begins on the first day of the first or second month (whichever selected on the TRS Request Form) following the postmark of the TRS Request Form. For example, if the form is postmarked in August, Airmen may choose for coverage to begin on the first day of October as this is when the program begins.

WHO DO I REPORT A QUALIFYING CHANGING EVENT TO?

Sponsors must report all qualifying life events to a military personnel office and record the information in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS).