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Frequently Asked Questions
It is vital for you to notify DFAS of any changes in your beneficiaries or beneficiary information for the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) or for your Arrears of Pay (AOP).
If we do not have correct beneficiary information and updated contact information, it can cause delays and financial hardship for your loved ones.
The Survivor Benefit Plan
As you know, SBP provides eligible beneficiaries an annuity, a monthly payment for the lifetime of the beneficiary. Retirees choose whether or not to enroll in SBP and pay premiums for SBP coverage.
How Retirees Can Check if the SBP Beneficiary is Current
If you have elected SBP coverage, it is important for you to notify us as soon as possible when a beneficiary change occurs. If you get married, divorced, lose a spouse, or have a child, that change can affect SBP premium payments. In addition, some SBP changes have a one-year time limit for notifying DFAS.
Your Retiree Account Statement (RAS), available in myPay, has information on it about pay, deductions, taxes and SBP. The SBP section has information on it for members who participate in SBP.
The most important information for you to check is the type of coverage and the name and date of birth of your spouse beneficiary (if applicable).
If changes need to be made to your Survivor Benefit Plan coverage, remember that DFAS needs a copy of the official documentation (marriage license, divorce decree, death certificate or birth certificate), along with the Survivor Benefit Plan Election Change form (DD2656-6) to update your account.
Arrears of Pay Beneficiary
As you know, after a retiree passes away, a one-time payment of their final paycheck is made to a beneficiary. This is called Arrears of Pay (AOP).
The AOP is the pro-rated amount of your final month’s retirement pay. This is because entitlement to retirement pay ends on the date of your death. The amount of the payment owed is computed (based on the number of days in the month you were alive) and paid to your AOP beneficiary, along with any other money owed at the time of your death.
We suggest you limit the number of your AOP beneficiaries to avoid delays in payment. Remember that the AOP payment is usually less than one month’s pay, and this amount will be divided among all of your designated beneficiaries.
How to Check if the AOP Beneficiary Is Current
You can easily check your Retiree Account Statement (RAS) to make sure your AOP designation is current.
You can change your beneficiary or update beneficiary contact information at any time through myPay by clicking on the “Beneficiary for Arrears” link under “Pay Changes” in the menu on the left side of your account in myPay.
You can also update your Arrears of Pay beneficiary by completing a Designation of Beneficiary Information form (DD 2894).