445th AW Airmen must complete triennial BAH recertification this year

  • Published
  • By Amanda Dick
  • 445th Airlift Wing Public Affairs

Reserve Citizen Airmen with dependents will need to complete their triennial Basic Allowance for Housing recertification this year.

The 445th Airlift Wing Financial Management Military Pay Office is planning to begin commander notifications by the March unit training assembly, and Airmen will have until Sept. 30 to recertify their dependency status.

Per Air Force Manual 65-116V3, Financial Management, Airmen typically have a 60-day turnaround to provide a completed Department of the Air Force Form 594 with a wet signature to the pay office; however, it also states the pay office has a year to complete the recertification.

According to Andrew Dalton, 445th Airlift Wing Financial Management military pay lead, they opted to use that as the target for their deadline. He also stressed there will be no impact to pay if nothing has changed, as the recertification is only a document verification process.

Once the form is submitted, the pay office will compare the form to the Defense Joint Military Pay System-Reserve Component Housing Master Record, certifying and updating the BAH entitlement if there is a change.

Dalton said the 445th AW recertification will also cover those who are military-to-military married members even if they receive the single BAH rate due to both members being on orders. Additionally, if only one member is on orders, that member will be able to claim the with-dependent rate.

If Airmen miss the Sept. 30 deadline, the pay office will create the form with a change in dependency status on the Airman’s behalf and submit it in the system. This could create a serious financial burden for Airmen and their families.

“The biggest thing is your BAH rate is decreased from the with-dependent rate to the single rate,” Dalton explained. “Normally, it’s a couple hundred dollars, and you’ll be losing that a month basically.”

To get it changed back to a with-dependent rate, Airmen will need to complete and expeditiously submit the DAF Form 594 with supporting documents to the pay office.

However, the change will not be retroactive to the deadline, and the with-dependent rate will start on the date of late submission of the form.

While AFMAN 65-116V3 states the commander can approve an Airman for retroactive pay, it is only done if the Airman can prove they missed the deadline due to circumstances beyond their control.

While the pay office is working on ways to help make the process easier, for now, Airmen can submit their forms via email to 445aw.fm.bahrecert@us.af.mil

Airmen can help prepare themselves by getting all the documentation together now.

“All you really need is the DAF Form 594 and whatever substantiating documents you need to support that,” Dalton said. “So, if your 594 says you’re married to a civilian spouse, we need your marriage certificate. If it says you’re claiming a child as your primary dependency status – meaning you’re not married to a civilian spouse and only claiming a child – then we would need the birth certificate as well as the custody paperwork.”

The recertification is done every three years in addition to reporting a change in dependency status or when a member is reassigned to a new unit with a different servicing pay office. Airmen with dependents must re-complete the form even if done so recently due to one of the other options.

The pay office maintains the forms until they are replaced by the next triennial recertification, submitted for a change of dependent status request, or no longer needed due to an Airman’s reassignment, separation or retirement.

If a member does not receive notification from their commander and/or believes they should receive the with-dependent BAH rate, Dalton said they should complete the form and submit it during the recertification process.

Questions about how to fill out the form or any concerns can be directed to the email listed in the article.