Bonus Repayment

Background: I enlisted for 3 years, active duty, Infantry. I did not receive a bonus for my enlistment. In 2006, I reenlisted for a term of 6 years and received a SRB Bonus (lump sum) of $17,500.00. Within the first year of my reenlistment, I was Chaptered out under 5-8. I went from being in the Army to not being in the Army in less than 30 days. I was told multiple times I would not have to pay back my bonus (of course never once receiving this in writing). I cleared Finance, got that stamp, I was told I owed nothing. I was Chaptered out on 31 JAN 2007.

March 31 2009- I am finally eligible for reenlistment (my chapter paperwork told me I was ineligible to join for a period of 2 years). Active Duty Army will not take me so I try the next best thing- National Guard. I enlist for 3 years. March 31, 2012 I get honorably discharged. Life is good.

Fast forward to today: DFAS and the IRS have garnished all of my tax returns since 2012. I have been in a constant battle with them over my bonus repayment. In the past few years, they’ve taken about $11,000.00 back from me. They continue to insist I have to repay this money. I continue to tell them I don’t and demand they give back all the money they took in my tax returns.

I have referenced to them: AR 635-200, DoD 7000.14-R 020303 (current reg.), and DoD 7000.14-R 090403 EXCEPTIONS (archived reg.).

My questions: Who is right? Do I actually have to repay them this money? If I don't, How do I make this go away and get my money back?
Original Post
Do you still have the SRB contract and separation paperwork in your possession? And who was the person that stated you can keep your bonus? Did you go to JAG before separating from AD and ask them this question?

You received a bonus based on a contract of six years of active service and you think you earned that whole bonus due to a chapter 5-8 parenthood separation?

Serving subsequently for 3 years in the Guard does not equate to the 6 active duty years asked of you by the US Army in a legally binding contract.

You can call or e-mail based on this link.

https://www.hrc.army.mil/Enlis...nt%20Bonus%20Program

Selective Reenlistment Bonus Program

The Selective Reenlistment Bonus (SRB) Program is a monetary incentive offered to qualified Soldiers who reenlist in the Regular Army for continued duty in certain military occupational specialties (MOSs).

HRC conducts periodic analysis of each MOS in the inventory to ensure the SRB program is supporting its objective and adjusts the list of bonus MOSs, as appropriate.

The SRB is designed to increase the number of reenlistments in critical MOSs and is paid by specialty and time in service. Soldiers must have between 17 months and 14 years of active service paid out to no more than 20 years.

The amount awarded for an SRB is calculated based upon the amount of Additional Obligated Service and Tier level, as outlined in current SRB Message.

The eligibility criteria for awarding the SRB and other program features are outlined in AR 601-280, Army Retention Program, Chapter 5. Click here for the most current MILPER message.

Soldiers with questions pertaining to bonuses and eligibility requirements addressed herein should contact their servicing Career Counselors prior to contacting HRC.

For questions forward grade, full name, last four of SSN, and MOS with all e-mail requests to Retention Branch or call DSN 983-5966
********************************************

Also, here is a link based on the Navy's SRB but the same rules fall under federal title so please see how that could also apply to the US Army.

http://www.public.navy.mil/bup...nav2014/nav14081.txt

12. REPAYMENT. REPAYMENT POLICY IS GOVERNED BY SECTION 373 OF TITLE 37,
U.S. CODE, AND REFS (F) THROUGH (I), WHICH COLLECTIVELY DETERMINE WHEN
REPAYMENT OF THE UNEARNED PORTION OF A BONUS IS REQUIRED, NOT REQUIRED BUT
LEFT TO SECRETARIAL DISCRETION, OR PROHIBITED. SECTION
373 OF TITLE 37, U.S. CODE REQUIRES REPAYMENT WITH CERTAIN EXCEPTIONS.
AS A GENERAL RULE, REPAYMENT OF ANY UNEARNED PORTION OF A BONUS WILL BE
SOUGHT.
A. REPAYMENT WILL NOT BE SOUGHT WHEN A MEMBER FAILS TO COMPLETE AN SRB
CONTRACT IAW WITH THE COMPLETE POLICY CITED FOR EACH OF THE FOLLOWING
CIRCUMSTANCE:
1. DEATH, NOT DUE TO MISCONDUCT, IAW REF (F).
2. INCURS AN INJURY OR ILLNESS, NOT DUE TO MISCONDUCT, UNDER
SPECIFIED CONDITIONS, RESULTING IN SEPARATION OR RETIREMENT FOR DISABILITY
UNDER TITLE 10 U.S. CODE, CHAPTER 61, IAW REF (F).
3. SEPARATION UNDER A HARDSHIP OR SOLE SURVIVOR DISCHARGE IAW REF
(F).
4. COMPLETION OF THE CONTRACT IS PREVENTED BY THE NAVY DUE TO
SPECIFIED MANAGEMENT ACTIONS IAW REF (F).
B. REPAYMENT IS AT DISCRETION OF SECRETARIAL PROCESS WHEN A MEMBER FAILS
TO COMPLETE AN SRB CONTRACT IAW THE COMPLETE POLICY CITED FOR EACH OF THE
FOLLOWING CIRCUMSTANCES. REPAYMENT ACTION WILL BE INITIATED FOR THESE
CIRCUMSTANCES, UNTIL AND UNLESS THE SECRETARIAL PROCESS WAIVES OR REMITS
RECOUPMENT:
1. SEPARATION FOR MEDICAL REASONS NOT COVERED BY PARAGRAPH

12.A.2, IAW REF (F);
2. MEDICAL REASONS PRECLUDE COMPLETION OF SRB CONTRACT, BUT MEMBER
IS NOT SEPARATED AND CONTINUES IN ANOTHER CAPACITY IAW REF (F);
3. THE SECRETARIAL PROCESS DETERMINES THAT RECOUPMENT IS CONTRARY TO
A PERSONNEL POLICY OR MANAGEMENT OBJECTIVE, AGAINST EQUITY OR GOOD
CONSCIENCE, OR CONTRARY TO THE BEST INTEREST OF THE UNITED STATES IAW REF
(F);


C. REPAYMENT IS REQUIRED FOR THE FOLLOWING CIRCUMSTANCES:
1. AN APPROVED REQUEST FOR VOLUNTARY RELEASE FROM THE WRITTEN
AGREEMENT SPECIFYING THE CONDITION FOR RECEIPT OF THE BONUS OR VOLUNTARY
SEPARATION FROM THE NAVAL SERVICE;
2. AN APPROVED VOLUNTARY REQUEST FOR RELIEF FROM A QUALIFYING
ASSIGNMENT;
3. FAILURE TO EXECUTE ORDERS TO A BILLET COMMENSURATE WITH THE
INDIVIDUAL'S SPECIALTY OR SKILL, GRADE, OR CAREER PROGRESSION;
4. DISABILITY OR PHYSICAL DISQUALIFICATION RESULTING FROM QQQQ
MISCONDUCT, WILLFUL NEGLECT, OR INCURRED DURING A PERIOD OF UNAUTHORIZED
ABSENCE;
5. SEPARATION FOR CAUSE, INCLUDING MISCONDUCT;
6. AN APPROVED DETACHMENT FOR CAUSE; AND
7. SEPARATION BY REASON OF WEIGHT CONTROL AND/OR PHYSICAL READINESS
TEST FAILURE.
8. ANY OTHER SITUATION NOT COVERED BY PARAGRAPH 12.C.



Also, here at this link

http://themilitarywallet.com/e...istment-bonus-guide/

Note on repaying a bonus due to early separation: Voluntary early separation often requires you to repay a portion of your bonus, but it may depend on why you separate. Repayment of bonuses has been waived at times during Reduction in Force (RIF) measures, but only in cases when the branch of service specifically waived the requirement. In other words, don’t take it for granted! Be sure to read the contract you signed when you received your bonus, and the contract you will sign to separate early. The terms will spell out whether or not you will need to repay your bonus.


I will get your SRB contract and go visit a tax lawyer and ask for a free consultation based on your financial situation.

Also, did you receive that whole 17K in lump sum or were you taxed and received a reduced amount? If you were taxed and lets say you received 14K instead; that will be the amount that you owe. Also, you should receive credit for the months you did serve under the SRB contract. 17K divide by 6 years = 2k plus something for each year.
I have a copy of all of the paperwork. I was told by my unit commander, JAG, and Army Finance at the time I wouldn't have to pay back the money. Nothing in writing of course.

I know I didn't earn the full 6 years worth of bonus have only served just under 1 year. I didn't voluntarily leave active duty. I spent a good 2 weeks with JAG off and on trying to stay in.

I did pay about $3500.00 in taxes at the time when I received the lump sum payment.


I have seen other cases identical to mine where the SM didn't have to repay a SRB bonus. If I had known I was going to be forced out, I never would have taken the bonus.
Well, did you provide them a copy of that contract?

Also, the AR you provided really does not provide any information unless you are also giving your DD 214 to them.

Here are some pertinent regs for you to read.

http://www.apd.army.mil/jw2/xmldemo/r601_280/main.asp

http://www.apd.army.mil/jw2/xmldemo/r601_210/head.asp

http://www.prim.osd.mil/Docume...FReports/FAES258.PDF

Also, what is the exact amount of money did you receive from the bonus?
quote:
Originally posted by dash516:
I'm waiting on a response from DFAS. It can take up to 60 days to complete.

My separation was entirely involuntary.


Good luck. I did find this thread and it may or may not help your situation. Read it.

http://community.armystudyguid...1024141/m/4001003671

and here is the current DoD reg Chapter 7a applies to you. 0903 – SELECTIVE REENLISTMENT BONUS (SRB) and 0904 – CRITICAL SKILL RETENTION BONUS (CSRB) on page 9-11, pdf page 178

http://comptroller.defense.gov...s/fmr/Volume_07a.pdf
Got a response today. They don't even acknowledge my original message to them. I know JDG is for Parenthood. I don't know what other options I have now. I've tried the BCMR, it was denied. DFAS won't recognize their own regulations.

This is in response to your recent inquiry on account number XXXXXXXX, regarding the recoupment of the unearned portion of your Selective Reenlistment Bonus (SRB).

The bonus recoupment is based on your separation code of JDG. If your DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, shows a different separation code, please forward a copy to this office for further review of your account.

If you disagree with the debt, a possible avenue of relief is to petition the Board for Correction of Military Records (BCMR) by completing the enclosed DD Form 149, Application for Correction of Military Records. You should submit the application, along with supporting documentation, to the appropriate address on the reverse side. Applying to the BCMR does not suspend the collection of the debt. If you receive a favorable decision from the BCMR, any money over collected will be refunded.
What was the story that you told/wrote to the BCMR? Also, as a male Soldier, how did you get a Parenthood involuntary discharge compared to Dependency? Were you a single parent after a divorce?

From what I read, parenthood has to pay it back while a dependency discharge does not. Did you try to have the BCMR change your discharge to that instead?

http://comptroller.defense.gov...rch/07a_09_Oct06.pdf

Page 9-20 states Parenthood has to pay it back but then read below to EXCEPTIONS.

10.
Parenthood.

EXCEPTIONS
: Hardship and dependency separations are considered involuntary for the purposes of this paragraph and do not require recoupment of unearned portions of a bonus

http://girightshotline.org/en/...r-hardship-discharge

Go to that website and call that number for assistance.

And if you seen other cases like yours, I will seek those individuals out and see if they have the same type of discharge on their DD214. If that is the case, then you can use that as a precedent.

Here are the differences between Parenthood and Hardship

Parenthood
5–8. Involuntary separation due to parenthood
a.
Soldiers will be considered for involuntary separation when parental obligations interfere with fulfillment of
military responsibilities. (See AR 600–20, chapter 5, concerning Soldiers’ responsibilities for care of family members
as related to military responsibilities.) Specific reasons for separation because of parenthood include—
(1) Inability to perform prescribed duties satisfactorily.
(2) Repeated absenteeism.
(3) Repeated tardiness.
(4) Inability to participate in field training exercises or perform special duties such as CQ and staff duty noncom-
missioned officer (NCO).
(5) Non-availability for worldwide assignment or deployment according to the needs of the Army.
b.
Separation processing may not be initiated under this paragraph until the Soldier has been adequately counseled
concerning deficiencies and has been afforded the opportunity to overcome them. (See para 1–16 and AR 600–20.)
c.
The notification procedure (see chap 2, sec I) will be used for separation under this paragraph.
53
AR 635–200 • 6 June 2005
d.
For characterization of service or description of separation, see paragraph 5–1.
e.
Commanders specified in paragraph 1–19 are authorized to order separation under this paragraph. See paragraph
1–11 for additional instructions for ARNGUS and USAR Soldiers. The criteria in chapter 1, section VII, will govern
whether the Soldier will be released from AD or ADT with transfer to the IRR, or whether he/she will be discharged.

Hardship/Dependency

6–3. Criteria
Soldiers on active duty may be discharged or released (see para 6–10) because of genuine dependency or hardship.
a. Dependency.
Dependency exists when death or disability of a member of a Soldier’s (or spouse’s) immediate
family causes that member to rely upon the Soldier for principal care or support. (See para 6–5 for definition of
Soldier’s “immediate family.”)
b. Hardship.
Hardship exists when in circumstances not involving death or disability of a member of the Soldier’s
60 AR 635–200 • 6 June 2005
(or spouse’s) immediate family, separation from the Service will materially affect the care or support of the family by
alleviating undue and genuine hardship. (See para 6–5 for definition of Soldier’s “immediate family.”)
(1)
Parenthood of married Soldiers.
A married Soldier who becomes a parent by birth, adoption, or marriage
(stepparent) and whose child (or children) is less than 18 years of age and resides within the household, may apply for
separation under hardship. The Soldier must submit evidence (see para 6–7
b
(5)) that the roles of parent and Soldier are
incompatible and that the Soldier cannot fulfill his/her military obligation without neglecting the child or children.
(2)
Sole parents.
Soldiers who are sole parents and whose children are under 18 years of age and reside within the
household, may apply for separation under hardship. A“sole parent” is defined as a parent who is single by reason of
never having been married, or who is divorced or legally separated and has been awarded child custody by judicial
decree or court order, or who is a widow/widower.

If dependency applies to you, I will get it change to that type of chapter.

Good luck.

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