Miscellaneous Expense Allowance
Miscellaneous Expense Allowance (MEA)
Joint Travel Regulation (JTR), Chapter 5, paras. C5300-C5310
A Miscellaneous Expense Allowance (MEA) is payable to you when a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) is authorized or approved, provided an appropriate transportation agreement has been signed. You must have discontinued and established a residence in connection with such change of station, regardless of where the old or new duty station is located. You are required to certify on the voucher that you have discontinued your residence at the old permanent duty station (PDS) and have established a residence at the new PDS in connection with the PCS.
When you report to the new PDS but your dependent(s) remain at the old PDS or other location without discontinuing the residence, reimbursement is limited to that for an employee without dependents until such time as the old residence is discontinued and relocation of residence is accomplished by the dependents.
Reimbursable Items (include but are not limited to):
1. Disconnecting/connecting appliances, equipment, and utilities involved in relocation; and cost of converting appliances for operation on available utilities. (Does not include purchasing new appliances in lieu of conversion.)
2. Cutting and fitting rugs, drapes and curtains moved from one residence to another.
3. Utility fees and deposits that are not offset by eventual refunds.
4. Forfeiture losses on medical, dental, and food locker contracts that are not transferable; and contracts for private institutional care, such as that provided for handicapped or invalid dependents only, which are not transferable or refundable.
5. Automobile registration, driver's license and use taxes imposed when bringing automobiles into some jurisdictions, cost of reinstalling a catalytic converter upon re-entry of vehicle into the United States.
6. Rental agent fees customarily charged for securing housing in foreign countries.
7. Charges for pet quarantine excluding medicine and medical care, grooming, and similar fees for services that are part of routine pet care.
8. Transportation of house pets.
9. Required removal or installation by host country law of automobile parts.
10. Re-assembly, set up and tuning of a piano moved incident to relocation.
11. A post office box rental fee when rented to provide a constant mailing address between the time an employee departs the old residence and occupies a residence at the new PDS.
12. Miscellaneous expenses connected with cancellation of a contract to purchase a house due to transfer in the government's interest.
13. Similar costs.
Items that are Not Reimburseable
1. Costs/expenses that exceed authorized maximums.
2. Costs/expenses incurred but disallowed elsewhere in the regulations.
3. Costs reimbursed under other provisions of law or regulations.
4. Costs/expenses incurred for reasons of personal taste or preference and not required because of the move.
5. Losses covered by insurance.
6. Fines or other penalties imposed upon employee or his/her dependents.
7. Judgments, court costs, and similar expenses growing out of civil actions.
8. Any other expenses brought about by circumstances, factors, or actions in which the move to a new duty station was not the cause.
9. Losses/costs due to selling/buying homes and personal property.
10. Duplicate payments for reimbursable expenses.
11. Additional insurance costs on HHG in transit to the new PDS, or cost of loss/damage to that property.
12. Additional costs caused by the employee shipping HHG that exceed the maximum weight allowance provided by law or this volume.
13. Higher income, real estate, sales or other taxes due to establishing a residence in the new locality.
14. Fines imposed for traffic infractions while en route to the new PDS.
15. Accident insurance premiums or liability costs incurred while traveling to the new PDS, or liability for uninsured damage caused by accidents for which the employee or dependents are responsible.
16. Losses due to the sale/disposal of HHG items that are not convenient or practicable to move.
17. Damage to/loss of clothing, luggage, or other personal items while traveling to the new PDS.
18. Subsistence, transportation, or travel expense in excess of the amounts reimbursed as per diem or other allowances.
19. Medical expenses due to illness/injuries of the employee or dependents while en route to the new PDS or while living in temporary quarters.
20. Costs due to structural alterations; remodeling or modernizing of living quarters, garages, or buildings, to accommodate POVs, appliances, or equipment; or the cost for replacing/repairing worn out or defective appliances/equipment shipped to the new PDS.
21. Costs of purchasing clothing, appliances (including delivery cost), and equipment due to relocation.
22. Costs of newly purchased items, such as rugs or draperies.
23. Fees for boarding pets while preparing to move and during the move to new PDS.
Without receipts (Moves with effective dates of transfer on/after July 18, 2011):
1. $650 or the equivalent of one week's basic compensation, whichever is the lesser amount, for an employee without dependents;
2. $1,300 or the equivalent of two week's basic compensation, whichever is the lesser amount, for an employee with dependents;
Maximum with receipts:
1. Employee's basic salary rate of one week (without dependents)
2. Employee's basic salary rate for two weeks (with dependents)
Note: The basic salary rate refers to the rate in effect at the time the employee reports for duty at the new duty station. In no instance can the allowable amount exceed the maximum rate of grade GS-13.
*If a claim is made with receipts, paid bills or other acceptable evidence justifying the entire amount claimed must support it. The travel-approving official must sign the voucher in block 21a.
Where to submit your Miscellaneous Expense Allowance (MEA) claim
After relocation of the employee and/or dependents submit the following by fax to one of these numbers:
1. DD Form 1351-2: Include appropriate signatures and dates.
a. Indicate in Block 12 of the DD Form 1351-2 who actually relocated.
b. You must include the following statement in block 18 of DD Form 1351-2.
"I certify that I (or "We" if you are claiming family MEA with dependents) have discontinued my (or "our" if you are claiming family MEA) residence at the old PDS and have established a residence at the new PDS."
c. Include the dollar amount being claimed in block 18 of the DD form 1351-2.
2. DD Form 1614, Travel Authorization, including any amendments.
3. Receipts if itemizing.
4. Travel approving official signature in approving official signature block, if itemizing.
5. Any advance payment paperwork, DD Form 1351-2
How to complete a DD Form 1351-2 for Miscellaneous Expense Allowance (MEA)
Block 1: PAYMENT
Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) is mandatory absent a waiver from your agency. You may submit a DD 2762, or other documentation as long as it contains the following to ensure payment is properly transferred to your account:
a. The Traveler's name
b. The Traveler's SSN
c. The Traveler's address
d. The routing number
e. The account number
f. Whether the account is Checking or Savings
SPLIT DISBURSMENT when available requires an "x" in the block requesting it and the dollar amount to be sent to the Government Travel Card. If reimbursement is less than the amount requested, then the whole reimbursement would be sent to the Government Travel Card.
Block 2: Last name, first name, and middle initial of employee.
Block 3: Grade of the employee.
Block 4: Social Security Number of employee.
Block 5: Indicate "PCS" and "Member/Employee" - for employee only.
Indicate "PCS," "Member/Employee," Dependent(s) - for employee and dependents.
Indicate "PCS" and "TDY' - for TDY enroute.
Indicate "PCS," "Dependent(s)" - for dependent(s) travel only.
Blocks 6a-6d: Valid mailing address for receipt of advice of payment.
Block 6e: Valid e-mail address.
Block 7: Daytime telephone number in the event DFAS Rome should need to make contact.
Block 8: Order number which is listed on the orders or amendments, (See DD Form 1614 Block 25), provided to the employee.
Block 9: List any and all previous payments paid from any finance office pertaining to the travel period being claimed. List "0.00" if you have not received any payments and "?" if you are not certain.
Block 10: Do Not Use - Leave Blank.
Block 11: Employee's new duty station address where employee is being assigned. (See DD Form 1614 Block 8).
Blocks 12 through 17: Do not require completion with the Miscellaneous Expense Allowance (MEA)
Block 18: Reimbursable Expenses:
a: List the date MEA is being claimed; date should be consistent with MEA Statement.
b: List "MEA" or "Miscellaneous Expense Allowance". If claiming "Itemized MEA", then after that statement list each expense to be considered.
c: List the amount being claimed for MEA:
(1) $ 650 single
(2) $1,300 family
(3) When itemizing list each individual amount for each expense listed in (b.) above
Block 19: Does not apply to this Civilian Permanent Change of Station claim.
Block 20: Claimant Signature and Date: (a & b): Physical signature of traveler and date the voucher was signed. Both must be complete. The member signs all PCS claims.
Block 20: Supervisor/Reviewer and Date: (c & d): Supervisory Chain of Command signature. All parts (20c, 20d, 20e, & 20f) must be completed. Check with your order issuing agency in case your claim is to be forwarded for review before submission to DFAS Rome.
Block 21: (If applicable) Handwritten name and signature of approving officer if authorizing expenses not listed on original order.
Note: Approving officer must list additional expenses authorized in block 29 and must include date signed in Block 21d.
Block 22: Leave Blank - Finance Office use only.
Blocks 23-28: Leave Blank - Finance Office use only.
Block 29: Used to clarify anything out of the ordinary, such as:
a. Indicate any and all leave periods during TDY.
b. Clarify any additional travel-related issues.
d. Reflect exchange rates when working with foreign currency.
e. List/explain any additional expense authorized after the Fact by the AO.
May I receive an advance of funds for MEA?
No, your agency must not authorize an advance of funds for MEA.
Are there any restrictions to the types of costs we may cover?
Yes, a MEA cannot be used to reimburse:
(a) Costs or expenses incurred that exceed maximums provided by statute or in this subtitle;
(b) Costs or expenses incurred but disallowed elsewhere in this subtitle;
(c) Costs reimbursed under other provisions of law or regulations;
(d) Costs or expenses incurred for reasons of personal taste or preference and not required because of the move;
(e) Losses covered by insurance;
(f) Fines or other penalties imposed upon the employee or members of his/her immediate family;
(g) Judgements, court costs, and similar expenses growing out of civil actions; or
(h) Any other expenses brought about by circumstances, factors, or actions in which the move to a new duty station was not the proximate cause.
Federal Travel Regulation (FTR)
Joint Travel Regulation (JTR)
Financial Management Regulation, Volume 9: Travel Policy and Procedures
Government Sponsored Travel Card