From Chief of Naval Personnel
Today, the Navy released NAVADMIN 259/16 which serves as the official notification of eligibility to opt-in to the Blended Retirement System (BRS) additionally, the Navy plans to send emails to all eligible Sailors notifying them of the retirement system choices they may have to make during 2018.
Here are six things Sailors should know about opting in to BRS.
- BRS new retirement option for some Sailors.
The Fiscal Year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act created a new military retirement system that blends the traditional legacy retirement pension with a defined contribution to service members’ Thrift Savings Plan account. Some Navy members may have the choice to stay with the legacy retirement system or opt into the BRS. No service member will be automatically moved to the BRS.
- Who can opt-in to BRS.
While Sailors with a Date of Initial Entry into Military Service (DIEMS) on or before Dec. 31, 2017 are automatically grandfathered under the current retirement system, some may be eligible to choose to opt-in to BRS depending on their length of services.
Active duty Sailors are opt-in eligible if their DIEMS is on or before Dec. 31, 2017 and they have less than 12 years of service as of Dec. 31, 2017, based on their Pay Entry Base Date (PEBD).
Reserve component members, including Full Time Support members, are opt-in eligible if their DIEMS is on or before Dec. 31 2017 and they have accumulated fewer than 4,320 retirement points as of Dec. 31, 2017.
United States Naval Academy, Reserve Officer Training Corps Midshipmen and Delayed Entry Program members are opt-in eligible if their DIEMS is on or before Dec. 31, 2017.
- Opt-in enrollment window.
The enrollment window for Sailors to opt-in to BRS is Jan. 1, 2018 through Dec. 31, 2018. Opt-in eligible Sailors must be in a paid status at the time of enrollment. If Sailors meet the opt-in requirements but are not in a paid status during the election window, they will be given an opportunity to enroll during their first period of paid status. Hardship extensions to the enrollment window for opt-in eligible members who are unable to enroll in BRS during the 2018 enrollment period will be considered on a case by case basis.
- Notification of BRS opt-in eligibility.
Eligible Sailors will receive notification of opt-in eligibility via email at their email address in the Navy Standard Integrated Personnel System (NSIPS). Additionally, commands should notify all opt-in eligible members within their command. Command administration departments should contact their personnel support divisions on a regular basis to access a list of all opt-in eligible members within their command.
- Making the opt-in decision.
The decision to stay in the current retirement system or opt-in to BRS is an important and irrevocable decision that eligible Sailors must make based on their individual circumstances. That is why all Navy commands must ensure that opt-in eligible members complete the Blended Retirement System Opt-In Course. This course will be available in January 2017 on Joint Knowledge Online (JKO) and Navy E-learning. Though this course will be accessible by all service members, it is mandatory for opt-in eligible service members.
- Required training for Navy leaders and Sailors not eligible to opt-in to BRS.
In an effort to facilitate a smooth transition to BRS, Navy members not eligible to opt-in are required to complete the BRS Leader’s Training course that is now available on JKO at http://jko.jten.mil/ (course #: J3OP-US1330) and the Navy E-learning website at https://www.nel.navy.mil (course #: JKDDC-BRS-LTI-1.0).
For the most up-to-date information on BRS and links to training go to the Uniform Services Blended Retirement web page at http://militarypay.defense.gov/BlendedRetirement/
For complete information on BRS opt-in requirements and notification read NAVADMIN 259/16 at www.npc.navy.mil .