Our research showed that many get caught out with unexpected costs of transition and life in ‘civvy street’. – even those who spend time planning and organising their finances.
“nothing prepares you for the additional cost in Civvy street”
“its challenging to make sure you are fully informed financially and that there are no nasty surprises, Its hard work and complex.”
There are, however lots of tools and services to help you, throughout your service life and for transition:
MoneyForce – is the official MOD channel for advice for UK service personnel and their families.
Joining Forces Credit Union – makes savings and loans for the armed forces community simple and straightforward via this not-for-profit financial cooperative.
There is a Benefits Calculator/app on the defence intranet, that allows you to accurately value the benefits you receive as part of your military ‘package’. You can determine how much you need to maintain your standard of living. Great for preparing for transition!
For transition specifically:
CTP – As well as their resettlement guides, CTP offer a Financial Aspects of Resettlement Brief (FAR Brief) in conjunction with the Forces Pension Society as part of resettlement – it is open to spouses and partners too and we would encourage everyone to take advantage of this. Service Leavers who responded to our survey spoke highly of the brief and many spouses and partners wished that they had attended.
Forces Pension Society – On joining for a small amount, Forces Pension Society can offer expert advice on your pension entitlement.
Veterans UK – administers the armed forces pension schemes and compensation payments. It also offers welfare and support through the Veterans Welfare Service, which provides support to “enable the seamless transition from service to civilian life” You can contact them through the Veterans UK helpline 0808 1914 218.
Some practical points:
You should note that the final payout for pension benefits can take up to 35 working days after the Service Leaver’s final date of service so don’t rely on it for short term expenditure.
National Insurance Contributions
From 6 April 2010 all Service spouses and civil partners have been able to claim National Insurance credits for time spent accompanying their spouse or partner on an overseas assignment.
These credits protect your entitlement to the basic state pension and contribution-based Social Security benefits such as job seekers Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance.