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Active Duty/Line of Duty Survivors Spotlight


Survivors: Are You Missing Important Information About Your Benefits Because Your Contact Information is Out of Date?

As a survivor, did you know it’s important to keep your contact information updated with DFAS, DEERS, and your loved one’s service to ensure you receive important information and your benefits? If we have updated contact information for you, we can inform you when there are program or policy changes, or if you need to provide us with information to keep your benefits coming.

How to Update Your Service

To update your contact information, please contact your service’s long-term case management program:
How to Update Your Address with DFAS

There are several ways to update your address if you are receiving Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) payments for yourself or for a child. The easiest and most convenient way to update your address is by logging into myPay and updating it there: https://mypay.dfas.mil.

If you don’t have a myPay account, you can send us a letter by mail or fax (see Contact Us at the end of this newsletter) or you can upload your letter as a PDF using our askDFAS online upload tool: https://www.dfas.mil/raquicktools

Be sure to include your full name, your Social Security Number and the member’s Social Security Number, and sign and date any written correspondence.

You can also call our Customer Care Center at 800-321-1080.

How to Update Your Contact Information with the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS)

Family members can update contact information after they're registered in DEERS. Options to update your information are:
  • Log into milConnect: https://milconnect.dmdc.osd.mil/milconnect/ 
  • Call 1-800-538-9552 (TTY/TDD: 1-866-363-2883)
  • Fax updates to 1-800-336-4416 (Primary) or 1-502-335-9980 (Alternate)
  • Mail updates to:
    Defense Manpower Data Center Support Office
    Attn: COA
    400 Gigling Road
    Seaside, CA  93955-6771
Please note: If you receive VA benefits, you also need to keep your contact information updated with the Department of Veterans Affairs. Find out how:

Active Duty/Line of Duty Surviving Spouses: If You Chose the “Optional Child Annuity” and Haven’t Sent Your Paperwork, Please Take Action

This year brought big changes for surviving spouses and children of members who died on active duty or inactive duty, in the line of duty, and previously requested the Optional Annuity for Dependent Children. The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 repealed the authority for the Optional Annuity for Dependent Children as of January 1, 2023.

This means for the surviving spouse of an Active Duty/Line of Duty member who originally requested to have the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) annuity paid directly to an eligible dependent child or children, the annuity must now revert to the surviving spouse (if she or he submits documentation and is eligible).

Please check our special focus webpage for details regarding the changes: https://www.dfas.mil/sbp2023childoptrev

Surviving Spouses
If you are the surviving spouse of an Active Duty/Line of Duty member who requested to have the SBP annuity paid directly to an eligible dependent child or children and you have NOT submitted a Spouse Eligibility Packet, we need your information as soon as possible. Please download, fill out and submit the eligibility packet from our special focus webpage as soon as possible: https://www.dfas.mil/sbp2023childoptrev

Surviving Children
If you are the surviving child or the parent or guardian of a surviving child of an Active Duty/Line of Duty member whose surviving spouse requested to have the SBP annuity paid directly to the child or children at the time of the member’s passing, please see our special focus webpage for more information: https://www.dfas.mil/sbp2023childoptrev

Special Note About Eligibility Verifications for Newly Eligible Surviving Spouses
Spouse SBP annuitants under the age of 55 are required to verify each year they are not married. We realize that some of you just recently began receiving pay, so it may seem odd to need to provide eligibility verification so soon after the start of your SBP benefit payments.

However, we do need a new completed, signed eligibility verification from you by the first day of the month of your birthday each year, so if you receive a request, please promptly complete and sign your document and return it to us. Please see the article in this issue “Simplifying Eligibility Verifications for SBP Annuitants.”

Active Duty/Line of Duty Survivors Spotlight - From Our Partners: All About the Online Survivor Benefits Reports (OSBRs)
The following links connect to information about the Online Survivor Benefits Reports (OSBR) for surviving spouses, eligible adult children and guardians of surviving children. You will be able to see the various financial benefits you should be receiving from all federal resources and view projected future payment amounts, which will include any recent changes in law.

You will also learn about the Family Assistance Support Team (FAST) who can help you to access your reports, to include your initial OSBR. The interactive OSBR further allows you to input “what if” scenarios to your — and your family members’ — education, employment, disability and marital status.

Active Duty/Line of Duty Survivors Spotlight: News from Military OneSource - Free Tax Services

MilTax connects you with personalized support from tax consultants and access to     e-filing software that includes industry-recognized security safeguards. Surviving spouses or dependents of service members who die while in an active duty status may be eligible for this free resource.

Find out more: https://www.militaryonesource.mil/financial-legal/tax-resource-center/miltax-military-tax-services/

Active Duty/Line of Duty Survivors Spotlight - News from Military OneSource: New Survivor Resources Webpage
Military OneSource has a new "I am a Survivor" webpage that offers information, resources and confidential support options for our military survivor community: https://www.militaryonesource.mil/role/survivor/

​Page Updated Oct 30, 2023