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Veterans 2014 Cost of Living Allowance Announced 1.5%

2014 Benefits UpdateIt’s official. The 2014 cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) for military retired pay, SBP annuities, Social Security checks, and VA disability and survivor benefits will be 1.5%, effective December 1, 2013. It will first appear in the January checks, which will be paid on December 31.

For the month, the CPI increased to 230.537. The COLA baseline for next year is 230.327. The 1.5% 2014 COLA will be the fourth lowest COLA since the turn of the century – trailing only the zero-COLA years of 2009-10 and the 1.4% of 2002. But there are two categories of military retirees who won’t receive a 1.5% COLA

Some Service members who retired during calendar year 2013 will receive a somewhat smaller, partial COLA for this year only, because they weren’t in retired status for the full year. Their partial COLA’s generally reflect the amount of inflation experienced in the calendar quarters since they retired.  Jan.-Mar. retirees will receive 1.5%; Apr.-Jun. retirees, 0.9%; and Jul.-Sept. retirees 0.4%.

Those who retire after Oct. 1, 2013, will see no COLA this year. All members who retired during 2013 will receive full-year COLA’s in future years.
REDUX Retirees: Service members who entered service on or after Aug. 1, 1986 and who elected to accept a $30,000 career retention bonus at the 15-years-of-service point agreed to accept reduced retired pay and COLA’s as a trade-off for the bonus. REDUX retirees’ COLA’s are depressed 1% below the normal COLA rate, so they’ll see a 0.5% COLA this year.

To read the entire 22 page announcement and how this will affect your payments, go to COLA 2014 Update ► Final COLA Announced

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