What benefits do people receive when they retire from the U.S. Air Force?


Quick Answer

Whether someone has benefits when they retire from the United States Air Force depends on how long they served and when they retired. Those who retire after 20 years of service usually receive retired pay, whereas others can receive disability pay if they left due to a medical condition.

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Full Answer

When someone retires from the U.S. Air Force following at least 20 years of service, they may receive retired base pay. This either means the basic pay they would usually receive, or the military calculates a figure using the high-36 method. The high-36 method requires the military to take the highest 36 months of pay and divide it by 36 to calculate a monthly figure. Those who entered the military before September 8, 1980 benefit from the first method, whereas others use the second. These figures then go through the retired pay multiplier, which awards amounts based on years of service.

People who have served in the U.S. Air Force may also receive disability benefits if their disability arises as a result of their time in service. In some cases, a condition that arises as a secondary effect of an injury encountered in service makes them eligible. Other benefits include mortgage life insurance, being able to pass benefits onto a spouse after dying and adapted housing grants for those with disabilities.

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