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statutory  requirements  for  permanent  Regular officers  may  be  found  in  the  Naval   Military Personnel Manual, NAVPERS 15560A. Statutory requirements  require  no  application  from  the officer   concerned. Disability  Retirement Members  of  the  armed  services  who  retire because of physical disability may receive certain tax  benefits.  If  an  officer  retires  for  other  than physical  reasons,  the  entire  amount  of  retired  pay is  taxable.  If  an  officer  is  retired  for  physical reasons,  however,  and  elects  retired  pay  on  the basis of percentage of disability, such pay is tax exempt. RETIREMENT  BENEFITS In  addition  to  retirement  pay,  many  other benefits are offered upon retirement. The follow- ing  section  describes  some  of  these  added  bonuses. Social  Security  Benefits Active-duty   military   personnel   are   placed under  full  Social  Security  coverage  immediately upon entering service. Credits based on military service  are  not  lost  regardless  of  retirement  or release  from  the  service.  A  service  person  may receive retirement pay or any form of compensa- tion or pension from the Veterans Administration plus Social Security insurance payments at the age of 65 (or optionally at age 62), If totally disabled a  person  may  apply  for  Social  Security  benefits immediately. Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) This program assures financial protection for survivors of retired uniformed service members. The  Survivor  Benefit  Plan  (SBP)  provides  an income  of  up  to  55  percent  of  a  retiree’s  pay  to the  retiree’s  widow  or  widower  and  dependent children. In the past, surviving members of a retiree’s family  often  found  themselves  with  little  or  no income  following  the  retiree’s  death.  SBP  fills  that gap in the area of service benefits. Until passage of the SBP law, the retired pay of retired members oft he uniformed services ended with their death, unless they had elected voluntarily to participate in  the  Retired  Serviceman’s  Family  Protection Plan   (RSFPP)—known   originally   as   the   Con- tingency  Option  Act. Under  the  Survivor  Benefit  Plan,  members  are automatically  enrolled  in  the  plan  with  maximum coverage when they retire if they have spouses or dependent  children,  unless  they  elect  a  lesser coverage or decline participation before becoming entitled to retired pay. The retiree must elect the lesser coverage at least 30 days before the first day for  which  he  or  she  can  receive  retired  pay. Since the federal government pays a substan- tial part of the SBP cost, retirees give up only a small  part  of  their  retired  pay  to  provide maximum  coverage  for  their  dependents. Miscellaneous Benefits of Retirement In  time  of  peace  retired  officers  may  not  be ordered  to  active  duty  without  their  consent. Although they may be ordered to active duty in time of war or national emergency, they are not required   to   hold   themselves   in   readiness   for active service. Officers  may  use  their  military  title  in commercial enterprises provided the use of that title does not bring discredit to the Navy Depart- ment or the Department of Defense. Retirees are entitled to wear the uniform of the grade held on the retired list when the wearing of the uniform is  appropriate. Retired   officers   and   their   dependents   are entitled  for  life  to  the  same  medical  and  dental services provided their active-duty counterparts, provided  funding,  staffing,  and  facilities  are available.  They  are  also  entitled  for  life  to  the privilege  of  making  purchases  in  commissaries, exchanges,  and  ship’s  service  stores. Retired,   as   well   as   active-duty,   personnel should  remember  they  may  have  acquired  veteran status  and  are  thus  entitled  to  many  benefits available from the Veterans Administration (VA) and from the state in which they reside. These may include  employment  counseling,  home  and  farm loans,  unemployment  compensation,  burial  rights, and  VA  benefits  for  veterans  with  disabilities. SURVIVOR’S  BENEFITS Younger people usually are so busy living and making  a  living  that  they  put  off  systematic planning  for  their  families  until  they  approach middle age and maximum earnings. Before that time, in most cases, they cannot afford adequate protection anyhow. If they choose a Navy career, that  is  one  worry  they  can  forget.  Provision  for their dependents begins the moment they enter the naval  service  and  continues  into  retirement. 3-21

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