JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas — If you’re newly married, newly divorced, have dependent children or have a child who was born out of wedlock you may be confused about military benefits.
Some family situations are complicated or even awkward, so Airmen may be reluctant to pursue benefits to which their dependents – or former dependents – are legally entitled, said Ed Yoder, AFPC Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System Project office.
“Responsibility and accountability are deeply held values for Airmen, but securing dependent benefits can seem daunting and often Airmen aren’t sure what to do or who to ask for help,” Yoder said. “AFPC and local military personnel sections are here to help people figure out what their benefits are and how to get them.”
Routinely, new Airmen wait far too long to secure benefits for their dependents, which can be a problem, he said.
“We have a number of basic training members, ROTC graduates and Academy cadets who marry and don’t have the first idea what to do to make sure their dependents are covered. If you wait until you arrive at technical school or your first duty station, your new spouse or child won’t have the coverage they’re entitled to,” said Yoder.
The first thing an Airman should do when he or she has a new dependent is contact the local military personnel section to enroll the family member in DEERS and get dependent identification cards.
Detailed guidance on a host of dependent benefits programs and situations is available on the myPers website. Go to https://mypers.af.mil, select “search all components” in the drop down menu, and enter “dependent entitlements” in the search window.