Today Congresswoman Chellie Pingree welcomed a Department of Defense decision to provide retroactive special pay to service members whose contracts were extended due to stop loss during the last eight years. The Department of Defense estimates that approximately 185,000 active and former service members are eligible for the payment.
"I am very pleased with this decision," said Pingree, a member of the House Armed Services Committee. "This payment is the least we can do for the brave men and women and their families who continued to faithfully serve our country after their contracts were scheduled to end."
Service members--including members of the Reserve components, and former and retired members--are eligible if they served on active duty between September 11, 2001, and September 30, 2009, while their enlistment was extended or retirement suspended.
Eligible members will receive a payment of $500 for each month, or any portion of a month, they were retained on active duty due to stop loss.
Service members have until October 21, 2010, to file a claim for the special pay. Survivors of service members killed in combat or who died after their service can also make claims.
Each branch of the armed services has its own online filing process.