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Learning the military's new retirement system

Blended Retirement System starts next year

Department of Defense photo An Airman reviews the Department of Defense course content for the Blended Retirement System Opt-In training recently. Eligible service members are required to take the opt-in course to learn about their options with the ne

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JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas — The Defense Department will implement the new Blended Retirement System next year. While no one needs to make a decision until Jan. 1, all service members should take advantage of training and informational resources to research their options during the remainder of 2017.

Service members eligible for the new Blended Retirement System began receiving email notifications in February from their service component to ensure they receive correct information regarding their benefits to make the decision best suited for their individual needs.

The opt-in course, found by visiting, is designed to provide sufficient information for eligible service members to make an educated decision about their retirement system. However, service members are highly encouraged to discuss their personal situations with a personal financial counselor. The Blended Retirement System Opt-in training is available on Advanced Distributed Learning Service under the “Selected Force Training” drop down menu.

Only those active-duty service members who, as of Dec. 31, have served fewer than 12 years, or reservists who have accrued fewer than 4,320 retirement points, will have the option of electing Blended Retirement System or remaining in the legacy retirement system. These service members will be required to take the opt-in training and should provide a copy of the training certificate to their unit training manager upon completion.

Department of Defense leaders recommend Blended Retirement System training for all service members and encourages them to take the opt-in course. Many leaders may not be eligible to opt-in to Blended Retirement System themselves, but they still need to be knowledgeable about the new system to understand what their junior service members should know as they prepare to make their decisions in 2018.

The leader training course, found at, is also available to those without a Common Access Card — to include family members — via an alternate website.

Blended Retirement System information is continuously updated on from any military landing page.

In addition, a live chat feature on Blended Retirement System is available for service members. To chat live with a Total Force Service Center representative, go to the page and allow about 30 to 60 seconds to enable a representative to come online.

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