Army Offering Some 15-Year Vets Early Retirement; Gerald Purcell Comments

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Some U.S. Army soldiers with between 15 and 19 years of service may be eligible for early retirement as the branch undergoes a planned drawdown of forces through 2017, the branch announced Tuesday.

David Vergun of the Army News Service writes the branch is using Temporary Early Retirement Authority as one of several tools to reduce the size of the force, going from 570,000 active-duty soldiers to about 490,000 active-duty soldiers by the end of fiscal year 2017.

Under the TERA directive, Vergun writes officers and warrant officers who have twice failed selection for promotion to the next grade and noncommissioned officers denied continued service by an approved qualitative selection board are eligible for retirement under TERA.

“Soldiers who elect to retire under TERA and are approved, will receive full retirement benefits at a slightly reduced annuity,” Gerald Purcell, the enlisted personnel policy integrator with Army G-1, said to the Army News Service.

Purcell said the qualitative selection board will identify noncommissioned officers by military occupational specialties and pay grade and determine compatibility of their skills with the Army’s future force structure mission requirements.

Soldiers will have a year to decide whether to accept TERA after being notified of selection from the board, Purcell said, according to Vergun’s piece.

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  1. Several service-members will look upon this as unfair. The early retirement should be available to every one, first come – first served, until they get the numbers. Not a good idea to put people into ‘categories’ based on performance.

  2. Mark – wait, it’s NOT a good idea to put people into categories based on performance? So what you’re saying then, is the Army needs to retain the non-performers who couldn’t advance their career/status for whatever reason and give the early-out option to the people who choose to get out of the Army because they can no longer bear being in a force now lead by people who are essentially tenured because they couldn’t advance their careers, but weren’t shown the door? This system is at least fair – it’s fair to servicemembers who have invested a significant portion of their lives to serving their country, and their country can not now discount their aggregate of service because of accounting convenience. It’s also fair to those who chose to remain in the force, and are still producing something that can be offered back to the force as they grow in rank and tenure. Those who have served 15 years (or longer) of service who are not able to continue to be front-leaning, innovative, creative thinkers should be the first to go but paying back their sacrifice is also called for. However, to think that it’s in the DoD’s best interests to allow the best/brightest (who are the most likely people to run for the door at this piont – let’s face it, everyone knows it) preference to retire early rather than suffer through another (up to) 5 years in the inflexible, inefficient, non-creative, wasteful, and mismanaged force we’re in now, is just inane. In fact, dare I say unane.

    CW2, 17 years ‘invested’. Also an undying optimist who believes things can’t possibly be worse than they are today, so I plan on 25.

  3. All,

    I am one of those fortunate officers who was offered TERA although I am qualified for sanctuary as a senior regular army Major. The situation can be highly confusing. Intially, I was targeted for a show cause board for “bad paper” from over 8 years ago, fought and won as a reduction method. This was HRCs “dity little trick” to get people to quit with no benefits or be forceablely retired especially if they are guilty because you can face a less than honorable discharge. Then I was passed over for promotion a second time for the same information from above and I was directed for involuntary separation. However, then I passed my 18th year and then it had to be retracted. Finally, i was offered TERA with one week to submit my retirement paperwork as provisions of assignment. I took the easy way out, because the US Army is being ruthless in their methods, and although I am fortunate, most will not. Knowledge is power guys. Read all updates on regulations and MILPER messages.

  4. I have 17 yrs in and I was wondering if I qualify for early retirement for my service let me know they say its ets/ rcp so its early retirement. Yes just want to know

  5. i put in 17 years of srvice.i didnt know if i was retired from the military until my 59th birthday was approaching.i found out that a person retiring with a lesser rank will not recieve a good retirement check from the goverment.or to put it more bluntly…we are screwed.17 or 15years of service you will be screwed.our goverment dosnt believe in our service people honor any freaking sad.

  6. obama and his land lizzards keep thier money whils taking money earned by people in the military away.reduce the ranks,enlarge the wondering if we are fighting on the same team? or are our leaders shifting sides to satisfie all there lobbiest lizards?why should people retiring from our military have to settle for crumbs from a goverment we protected along with the people of this nation.

  7. so how does this 15 year retirement thing work I’ve been in for 25 years but 13 of them are active but if you add the reserve time I will have about 15 to 16 years active. I just got out back in march of this year do to the fact that I could advance my career been passed over twice at the board. the bad thing about the board is if you don’t have college you might not be recommended for promotion just pass you over even if you were good at what you do. The Army just process me out without nothing. So who do I need to talk about this.

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