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Frequently Asked Questions

Time to Check and Update Your Beneficiary Information


Keeping your beneficiary information for the Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) or for your Arrears of Pay (AOP) up to date is vital. Please inform DFAS of any life changes when they happen.

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

SBP provides eligible beneficiaries an annuity, a monthly payment, for the lifetime of the beneficiary. Retirees have the choice to enroll in SBP and pay premiums for SBP coverage at retirement.

How Retirees Can Check if the SBP Beneficiary is Current

If you have elected SBP coverage, it is important for you to notify us when a beneficiary change occurs. Changes can be triggered by marriage, divorce, loss of a spouse, or having a child. These changes 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 or youngest child, depending on your coverage.

If changes are needed to your Survivor Benefit Plan coverage, please note 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.

Please see our Changing or Stopping Your SBP Coverage webpage for additional information: https://www.dfas.mil/RetiredMilitary/provide/sbp/change

Arrears of Pay Beneficiary

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).

AOP is the prorated amount of your final month’s retirement pay. Entitlement to retired 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 Your 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). We now have a Form Wizard to help you fill out this form! The Form Wizard will ask you a series of questions and fill in your answers in the appropriate areas of the form. When you have finished answering the questions, you can even choose to electronically sign your form and submit it online using our online upload tool! Or click a button to generate a ready-to-print-and-sign PDF with your answers.

Get the DD 2894 Form Wizard and see more information on our Arrears of Pay webpage at: https://www.dfas.mil/retireeaop
 
Page updated Sep 28 2022