By Master Sgt. Brian HamiltonMay 21, 2018
Active Duty and Army Reserve soldiers who have not provided proof for basic housing allowance (BAH) at the 'with-dependent' rate will see a drop in pay in June.
In June 2013 the Army began requiring supporting documentation for BAH. Documents must be filed in the Army's personnel records management system, iPERMS.
As of September 2016, around 315,000 Active Duty and Army Reserve soldiers were drawing BAH at the 'with-dependent' rate. Nearly 45%, or 140,000, were missing documents in their files.
Since then, the U.S. Army Human Resources Command and the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) have been working together with units to identify Soldiers who are missing documents and make sure those records get updated.
To date, approximately 4,200 soldiers who had previously been drawing the full BAH rate, still need to submit documents.
"The Army must prove that every soldier is entitled to all the payments they receive," said Mike Mensch, policy proponent for HRC's Army Soldier Records Branch.
An All Army Activities message released Jan. 2, 2018, provided instructions for BAH supporting documents. That guidance included a March 1, 2018 deadline. That deadline has been extended to Jun. 5. Soldiers who, at that time, still have not submitted their documents will see a rate reduction on their June mid-month Leave and Earnings Statement.
Soldiers can restore their BAH by providing an updated DA Form 5960 and dependency supporting documents to their unit's personnel actions office (S1) or human resources professional. The S1 or HR professional must upload the documents to iPERMS and submit the documents to DFAS.
Once the pay transaction is received, and all supporting documents are loaded into iPERMS, soldiers will once again receive BAH at the 'with-dependent' rate. They will also receive any back-pay they lost.
Every year, Soldiers must submit a new DA form 5960 to their S1 or HR professional. The form is then scanned into iPERMS. During annual records reviews, Soldiers acknowledge that they may lose pay if their file is missing required documents.
Mensch said, "These reviews are needed to confirm current pay entitlements and help ensure Soldiers personnel records are complete.
"Missing records can have a major impact on Soldiers' benefits and pay when they separate or retire from service."
An exception has been made for currently deployed soldiers. They will need to comply with the policy 60 days after any post-deployment leave, or risk having their pay reduced.
Soldiers can address BAH specific questions to their local servicing S1 or HR professional. For information about military personnel records, including BAH-supporting documents or record reviews, visit the Army Soldiers Records Branch web page at www.hrc.army.mil/content/12343 or www.facebook.com/iPERMS.