BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colorado –
Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard members who have completed 20 years of total active federal military service, or TAFMS, are eligible for immediate pay and benefits upon retirement.
However, for AFR or ANG members who further their careers in a traditional status and possibly accept a higher grade, these service members have the option to convert their active duty retirement to an AF Reserve retirement (applies to both AFR and ANG) in accordance with Title 10 USC 12731.
In order to convert to an AF Reserve retirement at the highest grade/rank, members will have to complete a minimum of two years of satisfactory Air Reserve Component service, excluding active duty, after completion of 20 years of TAFMS. The excluded active duty service includes annual training, RPA, MPA, schools, and deployments.
Additionally, ANG members are eligible to convert their active duty retirements to an AF Reserve retirement by completing one year of service in the position of adjutant general or assistant adjutant general. Note that just one year makes you eligible if your appointment is terminated in accordance with Title 32, Section 324(b).
This is not an automatic application; members with enough active duty in their highest-held grade will need to apply for this benefit. HQ ARPC recommends service members who are approaching age 60 to apply three months ahead of their birthdays to convert to an ARC retirement and obtain a higher grade.
Service members must apply in writing for the conversion of their active duty retirement to an Air Force Reserve retirement by submitting the following request to HQ ARPC/DPTTR via myPers approximately three months prior to their 60th birthday or Reduced Retired Pay Age, or RRPA:
“I___________________, do hereby apply to convert my Active Duty retired pay to Reserve retired pay under provision of Title 10, United States Code (U.S.C.), Section 12741, to be effective on____________, in the grade of _____________. I understand that my Active Duty retired pay will be terminated the day prior to the Reserve retired pay effective date.”
HQ ARPC/DPTTR will audit the service member’s point credit summary to verify eligibility. If eligibility is confirmed, DPTTR will publish an AF Reserve (EL) retirement order. Finally, HQ ARPC/DPTTR will forward the appropriate pay package to DFAS New Accounts for pay adjustment.
Medical coverage will begin on the anniversary of the service member’s 60th birthday. Members are responsible for ensuring they have adequate medical coverage for themselves and their families after the conversion. A service member who is eligible for medical benefits under their active duty retirement will no longer be eligible for the same benefits upon conversion to an ARC retirement until age 60. Eligibility for the TRICARE Prime medical benefits is age 60 under an ARC retirement regardless of RRPA date.
RESERVE COMPONENT SURVIVOR BENEFIT PLAN (RCSBP)
Service members eligible for an active duty retirement must make a Survivor Benefit Program election upon retirement. The RCSBP election on file in the service member’s personnel record will remain “as is”. Service members will not be afforded another opportunity to change that election upon conversion from an active duty retirement to an ARC retirement.