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SDP (Savings Deposit Program)

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Guest Gundy

Yes, I've used the search function, and I even read all about the rules and regulations and understand the basics.

What I want to know is, has anyone here used it while deployed? It seems like a good deal at first glance, but all of the stipulations they add to it sound like a pain in the ass. How easy is it to get signed up? Have you had any hassles or pay issues, either starting or at the end of participation? And it mentions that you can take out sums greater than 10k (if your account has gotten that big) in installments. But can you also elect to withdraw it in a lump sum regardless?

I'm trying to decide if I should use this while deployed or invest the extra cash through more traditional means. Any help would be appreciated.

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Guest MeowMix

Many guys in my Sq did it while we were deployed, and after 9-11 our deployments were so close their money stayed in teh accounts gaining interest rapidly.

its a GREAT deal and you should take care of it but KEEP your paperwork, they have a habit of not remembering you deposited money in their accounts.

I would do it if all your other debts (car, visa etc) are paid off. And for ease, if you deploy a lot, just leave the cash in there, sometiems persco does not notify them you are not in the combat zone while you go home for 2 months and you keep the %

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This topic has been touched on recently in at least two other threads ( and ), but my question is specific to the SDP itself, so this old thread seemed more appropriate....

I'm recently arrived in the AOR. I want to start my SDP. I know the rules call for "receiving Hostile Fire Pay and be deployed for at least 30 consecutive days" (source). My understanding of that--and my recollection of how I've seen it applied in the past--has been that one has to be on *orders* for 30+ days. The finance office here, however, is insisting that I cannot enroll until Day 30 (effectively "costing" me one month's worth of interest).

Finance Guy/anyone, any better answer...?

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This topic has been touched on recently in at least two other threads ( and ), but my question is specific to the SDP itself, so this old thread seemed more appropriate....

I'm recently arrived in the AOR. I want to start my SDP. I know the rules call for "receiving Hostile Fire Pay and be deployed for at least 30 consecutive days" (source). My understanding of that--and my recollection of how I've seen it applied in the past--has been that one has to be on *orders* for 30+ days. The finance office here, however, is insisting that I cannot enroll until Day 30 (effectively "costing" me one month's worth of interest).

Finance Guy/anyone, any better answer...?

They are correct. You have to be in country for 30 days to qualify to deposit the funds. The funds you deposit are actually labeled as the funds earned in the first 30 days. So in essence you have to "Accrue" pay in the zone and after the first 30 days of accural, you can deposit those accrued funds.

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Is it normal to not be able to see my SDP statement more than 2 months after I initially deposited money into it? I know the $10K went somewhere, because it was deducted from my bank account, but mypay says I don't have an SDP statement.

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Guest TheBull

Is it normal to not be able to see my SDP statement more than 2 months after I initially deposited money into it? I know the $10K went somewhere, because it was deducted from my bank account, but mypay says I don't have an SDP statement.

It's not unusual - that stuff didn't show up in my MyPay until I was about to redeploy 5 months after I started it, and I had to fax my forms to DFAS since the Army guys in the IZ messed up the computer side of the program. You also get to keep accruing 3 months of interest after you return. Funny thing is that finance doesn't actually turn off the interest, so it kept showing more and more interest and only it corrected when I made my withdrawal.

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I deployed this past year and did the SDP. The maturity on that is 1 Feb 2010. Now I'm being deployed again, sometime in Feb 2010. Can I just leave the money in the account and reactivate the interest accrual when I get back over there? If so, how is that done paperwork-wise? If possible, the advantage to doing that is that I wouldn't have to wait 30 days to make a deposit because the full $10,000 is already in there.

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I deployed this past year and did the SDP. The maturity on that is 1 Feb 2010. Now I'm being deployed again, sometime in Feb 2010. Can I just leave the money in the account and reactivate the interest accrual when I get back over there? If so, how is that done paperwork-wise? If possible, the advantage to doing that is that I wouldn't have to wait 30 days to make a deposit because the full $10,000 is already in there.

Since you had a break in CZTE entitlement the 1 Feb 2010 applies only to your previous deployment. A new deployment would require you deposit again the amount of pay you accrue during that deployment. Of course you should withdraw what you have in SDP after 1 Feb since it will no longer draw interest anyway.

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Guest SPO

Finance Guy -

An SDP/TSP curveball for you.

In an effort to lower my tax bracket and plan to convert my TSP to a Traditonal IRA and then on to a ROTH IRA (using the current loop hole) once I separate from the AF, I've been plugging away 90% of my pay to the TSP while deployed.

When I went to the JBB finance office to contribute the max allowable amount per month to the SDP ($2500 or so for an O-3 I think), finance said I could only contribute ~ $300. They said because 90% of my pay is going to the TSP I can only contribue the difference, or my "take home pay" and quoted me DoDFMR Vol 7A Chapter 51, Savings Programs page 51-5.

I can't find the reg so I'm not sure if this is legit or not? If so, why are TSP and SDP mutually exclusive? I get that you can't drop $10k into the SDP all at once and that you are limited to your take home pay but why should my contributions to the TSP limit my contributions to the SDP? It's not like I can bounce a check for my contribution to the SDP; I've got the money to contribute to both programs. Any advice?

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Finance Guy -

An SDP/TSP curveball for you.

I'm not FG, but I have some recent JBB experience on exactly this subject....

First of all, evidently the answer you get from them depends on who is at the counter--as you obviously know, do NOT take anything they say for gospel, they don't know their own rules. This answer that you've gotten is substantially different than what I got *and implemented* as recently as December.

In an effort to lower my tax bracket and plan to convert my TSP to a Traditonal IRA and then on to a ROTH IRA (using the current loop hole) once I separate from the AF, I've been plugging away 90% of my pay to the TSP while deployed.

When I went to the JBB finance office to contribute the max allowable amount per month to the SDP ($2500 or so for an O-3 I think), finance said I could only contribute ~ $300. They said because 90% of my pay is going to the TSP I can only contribue the difference, or my "take home pay" and quoted me DoDFMR Vol 7A Chapter 51, Savings Programs page 51-5.

I can't find the reg so I'm not sure if this is legit or not? If so, why are TSP and SDP mutually exclusive? I get that you can't drop $10k into the SDP all at once and that you are limited to your take home pay but why should my contributions to the TSP limit my contributions to the SDP? It's not like I can bounce a check for my contribution to the SDP; I've got the money to contribute to both programs. Any advice?

First, the SDP limit is related to rank only insofar that rank largely determines your pay. My understanding of the limit (the intent, if not clearly spelled out in the letter of the reg) is to make sure that you don't end up depositing more in the SDP than the government can recover from you within a month (next pay cycle) if your check bounces. Viewed that way, TSP should not affect that total. I believe (going from memory here) that the reg also doesn't refer directly to "net" pay, but rather total pay less "mandatory deductions." Those "mandatory" deductions include taxes, eg, but not TSP contributions.

Anyway, I got both answers ("TSP is irrelevant for SDP" and "TSP contributions reduce max allowable SDP deposits") from them. I had it easier in that I was able to make it up in two months instead of one (I'm an O-5, so the limit doesn't hurt me as badly), which had the same effective date for interest purposes--so I didn't fight it, I just had to make an additional trip.

Another consideration: make sure they're considering all your leave time when calculating your max contribution. I didn't know this, but apparently your leave time (# days x basic pay) is "recoverable," hence it affects the limit.

I'm sure FG can get you better specifics, but that was my experience on this. I know they gave me an utterly wrong answer and FG gave me the references I needed to straighten it out. Good luck!

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Guest SPO

Jughead -

Thanks for the info.

I applied Finance Rule # 1 (if you don't like an aswer, go back later and ask someone else) but it didn't work.

I've never heard of the "leave pay" thing wrt SDP - good to know. Any chance you have a source for this info so I can call out finance when they try to say no dice?

- SPO

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I've never heard of the "leave pay" thing wrt SDP - good to know. Any chance you have a source for this info so I can call out finance when they try to say no dice?

No, sorry. I can only tell you that that is what they (JBB Finance) used/applied when they calculated my max SDP deposit. Since it helped what I wanted to do, I didn't go looking for sources. I speculate that it's the sort of thing spelled out in a policy memo somewhere, since I know the basic reg is pretty vague. Wish I could be more help--good luck!

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Finance Guy -

An SDP/TSP curveball for you.

In an effort to lower my tax bracket and plan to convert my TSP to a Traditonal IRA and then on to a ROTH IRA (using the current loop hole) once I separate from the AF, I've been plugging away 90% of my pay to the TSP while deployed.

When I went to the JBB finance office to contribute the max allowable amount per month to the SDP ($2500 or so for an O-3 I think), finance said I could only contribute ~ $300. They said because 90% of my pay is going to the TSP I can only contribue the difference, or my "take home pay" and quoted me DoDFMR Vol 7A Chapter 51, Savings Programs page 51-5.

I can't find the reg so I'm not sure if this is legit or not? If so, why are TSP and SDP mutually exclusive? I get that you can't drop $10k into the SDP all at once and that you are limited to your take home pay but why should my contributions to the TSP limit my contributions to the SDP? It's not like I can bounce a check for my contribution to the SDP; I've got the money to contribute to both programs. Any advice?

You many only put into USSDP any remaining "unallotteed" pay--basically Net Pay. Note below..."less authorized deductions". The two programs are not related.

RE: DoD Financial Management Regulation Volume 7A, Chapter 51

http://comptroller.defense.gov/fmr/07a/07a_51.pdf

C. Unallotted Current Pay and Allowances. The amount of money a member is entitled to receive on the payday immediately before the date of deposit, less authorized deductions and allotments (e.g., for dependents or insurance). Pay and allowances include special continuation pay, reenlistment bonus, travel allowance on discharge, and pay and allowances for unused accrued leave. Advance pay and travel allowance on PCS and temporary duty may not be deposited

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On 9 Mar I filled out the form to close my SDP. I got an email from mypay saying "This email confirms that myPay has transmitted your SDPWithdrawal transaction to your payroll system on Thursday, Mar. 10, 2011. Your payroll system must process this transaction before it will become effective."

Today I look in my account and it still hasn't been deposited when it should have taken 5 business days. I called finance up and they said they can't track it, all they can do is submit a case to DFAS and try to see what's going on. So basically, they don't know where my money is. How long is this going to take to get resolved?

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On 9 Mar I filled out the form to close my SDP. I got an email from mypay saying "This email confirms that myPay has transmitted your SDPWithdrawal transaction to your payroll system on Thursday, Mar. 10, 2011. Your payroll system must process this transaction before it will become effective."

Today I look in my account and it still hasn't been deposited when it should have taken 5 business days. I called finance up and they said they can't track it, all they can do is submit a case to DFAS and try to see what's going on. So basically, they don't know where my money is. How long is this going to take to get resolved?

I'd give it about two weeks to a month unfortunately. I wrote finance a check when I initially enrolled and a few weeks later, I had a $0 SDP balance and a debt for the amount I enrolled on my LES. "WTF!" So yeah, I had to call/email the main SDP POCs and about two weeks later it was resolved. It seems to be working fine, but I'm interested to see how it works out when it comes time for me to withdraw. Good luck!

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I'd give it about two weeks to a month unfortunately. I wrote finance a check when I initially enrolled and a few weeks later, I had a $0 SDP balance and a debt for the amount I enrolled on my LES. "WTF!" So yeah, I had to call/email the main SDP POCs and about two weeks later it was resolved. It seems to be working fine, but I'm interested to see how it works out when it comes time for me to withdraw. Good luck!

I've maxed out my SDP this deployment for the first time. If you read all the official mumbo jumbo on the SDP site, it says they only update the balance on your SDP in myPay on the first of the month. So if you put money in on the second of the month, it won't show up in your balance until almost a month later. Also, any money you put in after the 10th won't begin to accrue interest until the first of the next month.

Apparently DFAS doesn't have computers that can transer money like every bank in the industrialized world, so they rely upon carrier pigeons to deliver your money from the AOR to CONUS. If the pigeons get confused and try to fly west, the jet stream can delay your deposit indefinitely.

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Just got back from a deployment. I deposited $10k and have been receiving the 10% APR. If I got back from deployment on Sept 4 when will I stop accruing interest? It says 90-days after return. So can I pull my money out on Dec 1 or Jan 1 in order to maximize the monthly interest?

Diceman

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Correct. If you do nothing then 120 days after you return from the AOR the money will be returned to your pay account. Unless you need the money you should just leave it there for the next quarter to get that last $83 in interest.

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You will pay taxes on the intersest in the year you withdraw. It may be benificial to pull it out in Dec if your going to have a lower tax bracket in 2012.

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You will pay taxes on the intersest in the year you withdraw. It may be benificial to pull it out in Dec if your going to have a lower tax bracket in 2012.

Yes, because $83 will make you part of the evil 1%.

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I've done max SDP on all 5 of my deployments and have netted $2284. That's worth the slight risk of finance holding onto my money.

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Does it make a difference if I deposit the money on the 1st or the 31st of the month? From what I can tell, the deposit doesn't actually get applied to the account until the 1st of the next month.

edit: Removed an ambien fueled remark.

Edited by sky_king

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