ACTION NEEDED: Every eligible Marine must register an election decision for Blended Retirement System (BRS) by December 31, 2018. Opt-in eligible Marines who choose to enroll in BRS will begin receiving both Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) automatic and matching contributions the pay period following their BRS election (learn more about the types of contributions for TSP here). It pays, literally, to opt-in early if you are planning to enroll in BRS — you can start earning government funded TSP contributions sooner rather than later.

Step 1: Complete your BRS Opt-in training (you should have completed this already). Training is available online via MarineNet or Joint Knowledge Online, or you can visit your installation Personal Financial Management Office  to attend classroom-based training. You cannot make an election until you have completed BRS Opt-in training and the training code has been entered into your training record.

Step 2: Determine whether you want to opt-in to the BRS or decline BRS and remain in the legacy system. If you choose to enroll in BRS, your decision is irrevocable. So, be sure about your choice. If you need more information, visit the Personal Financial Management MarineNet Video channel, visit the military compensation BRS page, visit the M&RA BRS page, meet with your installation’s MCCS Personal Financial Management Specialist or your unit Command Financial Specialist, both of whom are available to provide individual counseling. Finally, MARADMIN 662/17 provides additional details about the BRS election process. (Note: The PFM MarineNet Video channel and the M&RA BRS page are both CAC enabled.)

Step 3: Register your BRS election decision by logging into Marine On-Line (MOL). Every eligible Marine must either accept or decline the BRS by December 31, 2018.

Step 4: Enroll in TSP if you have not already done so, especially if you have opted-in to BRS.

Step 5: Decide how much you want to contribute to your TSP. Marines who choose to enroll in BRS but who have not already established TSP contributions must also log in to myPay and begin TSP payroll contributions to receive TSP matching funds.

If you have opted into BRS but are not contributing to your TSP, you will only receive the Department of Defense one percent automatic contribution. If you do not contribute to your TSP, you do not receive matching contributions.

Choosing to contribute at least five percent of your base pay to your TSP account will maximize the government match to your account. You can choose whether the payroll funds you contribute go into a Traditional TSP or a Roth TSP, but all government contributions will receive traditional tax treatment.

Step 6: Decide how you want your TSP invested. TSP has a number of funds available for you to select. If you need more information, the PFM MarineNet Video channel contains a number of videos to help you navigate TSP and begin planning your financial future.

Still searching for more in-depth assistance financially preparing for your future?  Contact your installation’s Personal Financial Management staff. Learn more at the PFM MarineNet Video channel, the Marine Corps M&RA BRS page, and the Military Compensation BRS page.