Frequently Asked Questions

Defense Finance
and Accounting Service
Providing payment services of the U.S. Department of Defense

Frequently Asked Questions

With direct deposit, sometimes called electronic funds transfer or EFT, we send your payment straight to your bank account. It gives you immediate access to your money the day your payment is due. It also eliminates the risk of lost or stolen checks, forged signatures and identity theft.
If you enroll on myPay, we usually can make the change within three to seven business days. As long as you sign up two weeks prior to your next payment, your next payment should be deposited directly to your bank account.  If however you enroll by mail, it could take 30 to 60 days from the day we receive your enrollment for direct deposit to start.

If you’re a myPay user, you can see the change by reviewing your myPay account three to seven business days after enrolling.  Otherwise, you will not receive notification from DFAS when your direct deposit starts. Please check your bank statement or contact your bank on pay day to see to see if your pay was deposited.  Please do not call DFAS to ask if your payment was deposited. We cannot view your bank accounts.

Please cash or deposit your check as you normally would. Direct deposit can take one to three payment cycles to start.
Yes, direct deposit is more secure than paper check.  As of July 2012, 93 percent of Social Security recipients and nearly 99 percent of DFAS customers are enjoying being paid on time without the risks of lost or misrouted mail. Direct deposit gives them the control they want over their personal finances while increasing their financial security.
As a federal agency, we cannot endorse banks or other businesses. Find a bank or credit union in your area that is reputable and provides the services you need at little or no cost. And make sure they offer FDIC coverage of your account and accept direct deposit. It’s the best way you can take control of your finances and protect yourself at the same time.
If you've never used myPay, visit and click "Forgot or Need a Password" to have a temporary password mailed to you. Once you have received a password, return to the myPay home page and click "Create an Account" to get started. If you have trouble creating your account, please call myPay at 888-332-7411.
Please check your bank statement or contact your bank on pay day if you want to confirm that your pay was deposited.  Please do not call DFAS to ask if your payment was deposited. We cannot view your bank accounts. myPay users also can view a Leave and Earnings Statement or electronic Retiree Account Statement (eRAS) on myPay.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury established rules for DFAS and other government agencies to comply with a law that requires all federal payments to be made electronically, instead of by mailed paper check, by March 1, 2013. Electronic payments are mandated by 31 U.S.C. 3332 and Title 31, Part 208 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations. This measure provides significant savings to American taxpayers who will no longer incur the $120 million price tag associated with paper checks – a number that would have grown as tens of millions of baby boomers began to retire.

We understand that a small number of benefit recipients might not be able to open bank accounts, so we have worked with the Department of the Treasury to provide you with a debit card option similar to the one Treasury is offering to Department of Veterans Affairs and Social Security payment recipients. Find out more about the Direct Express Card option.

If you were over 90 years of age by May 1, 2011 and you currently receive your payments by mail, you will be extended an automatic waiver from the Treasury requirement. You do not have to do anything. You will automatically continue to receive your payments by check. Similarly, we have extended automatic waivers to all our beneficiaries living abroad and all our beneficiaries who have a mental impairment.

Otherwise, if you want to contiue receiving paper checks, you must apply for a waiver. Please be advised that you can only qualify for a waiver if you meet one of the following conditions:

  1. You have a mental impairment (doctor's note recommended but not required).
  2. You live in a remote location where the infrastructure does not support use of electronic payment products. For example, direct deposit is not available or there are no ATMs or point of sale locations to uitilize a debit and/or prepaid card.

Please do not apply for a waiver unless you believe you meet one of above-referenced conditions. If you do meet one of those conditions, you can find more details about the waiver application process, including a link to the request form, on our EFT waiver page.