Quick Tools

Forms Library

Customer Service

M-F, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET

The SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination: What Surviving Spouses Need to Know About 2023

On February 1, 2023, surviving spouses will receive their full Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) payment from DFAS and their full Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) payment from the VA. This is because February 1, 2023 will be the first SBP annuity payday after the SBP-DIC Offset is fully eliminated, which takes effect January 1, 2023.
The Special Survivors Indemnity Allowance (SSIA) will no longer be paid after the January 3, 2023 payment, because SSIA is only paid to spouses who have their SBP payment offset by DIC.
As a reminder, the SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination only affects SBP payments issued by DFAS. The changes do NOT affect Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) payments from the VA. Eligible surviving spouses will continue to receive the full amount of DIC from the VA.
To help spouses who are entitled to both SBP and DIC in 2023 understand the effect of this change, DFAS will mail letters in December with individual estimates of 2023 SBP payments.
Check out our new Quick Reference Guide on the special focus webpage: https://www.dfas.mil/sbpdicnews

Phase Three of the SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination: Effective January 1, 2023
In the third and final phase that begins January 1, 2023, the SBP-DIC offset will be fully eliminated. That means spouses will begin to receive their full SBP monthly payments with no offset (reduction) beginning with their January 2023 entitlement, which will be paid on February 1, 2023.

Summary – 2023 – Beginning February 1, 2023

VA will continue to pay:
•    100% of the DIC payment

DoD/DFAS will pay:
•    The full SBP monthly payment with no offset (no reduction) beginning on February 1, 2023.
SSIA will no longer be paid.

What Happened During 2022 – Phase Two of the SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination
January 1, 2022 marked the start of the second phase of the SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination.
The changes affected surviving spouses who were, or who became in 2022, eligible for both Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) payments and Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) payments, and who were subject to a full or partial SBP-DIC Offset.
In Phase Two of the SBP-DIC Offset Phased Elimination the amount that was offset (deducted) from the spouse’s SBP annuity payment was one-third of the amount of the DIC payment.
DIC payments were not affected.
The SBP monthly payment was reduced by the amount of the offset (1/3 of the amount of the DIC payment).
If a spouse’s gross SBP benefit was less than one-third of the amount of the DIC they received from the VA, the spouse did not receive an SBP payment. About 12 percent of spouses (approximately 7,600) did not see a change in their SBP payment in 2022 because their gross SBP benefit was less than one-third of their DIC payment from the VA.
Spouses who had their SBP offset by DIC received the Special Survivors Indemnity Allowance (SSIA) in 2022, up to the maximum amount of $346 per month, or up to gross amount of SBP (if the gross amount of SBP was less than $346). Beginning with the February 1, 2023 payment, no SSIA will be paid.

Summary – Phase Two
VA paid:
     • 100% of the DIC payment
DoD/DFAS paid:
 • The remainder of the SBP benefit after deducting an amount equal to 1/3 of the spouse’s DIC payment from the SBP gross annuity amount (SBP gross – 1/3 of DIC = SBP net)
 • Plus the appropriate amount of SSIA up to the maximum allowable ($346).
The effective date of Phase Two was January 1, 2022. The January 2022 entitlement was paid on February 1, 2022. The last payment of Phase Two is the entitlement for December of 2022, which will be paid on January 3, 2023.

Additional Notes
You do NOT need to call to notify us you are affected by the changes in the SBP-DIC Offset.    
Spouses should receive a January 2023 Annuitant Account Statement (AAS) near the time of their February 1, 2023 payment that will show the amount of the full SBP payment.
There will be no SSIA payment for entitlements after December 2023 (paid on January 3, 2023) because the SBP-DIC Offset will be fully eliminated beginning January 1, 2023.
Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) payments are paid the first business day of the month following the entitlement, so January 2023 SBP entitlement payments are made on February 1, 2023.
Annuitant Account Statements are available in your myPay account: https://mypay.dfas.mil
Reminder: if a spouse previously received a refund of SBP premiums paid due to the SBP-DIC offset, they will NOT need to pay back that refund because of this change in the law.

Check out the full range of Frequently Asked Questions and download our new Quick Reference Guide on the SBP-DIC News webpage: https://www.dfas.mil/sbpdicnews
We also have a webpage explaining SBP, DIC and SSIA: https://www.dfas.mil/sbpdicssia
Page Updated Oct 26, 2022