Some service members who have opted into the new Blended Retirement System aren’t taking advantage of the system’s key benefit: Matching retirement-plan contributions.
A little more than 1 in 10 service members who’ve switched to BRS aren’t putting any money into their Thrift Savings Plan account, according to Defense Department figures. The government automatically contributes 1 percent of a service member’s basic pay into his TSP account under BRS, but “to take full advantage of BRS, the member needs to contribute from his or her own pay in order to receive the government’s matching contributions up to an additional 4 percent,” Defense Department spokesman Navy Cmdr. Michael Cody said.
The TSP is a retirement savings plan similar to a 401(k) plan in the civilian world. Under the legacy retirement system, the government doesn’t match service members’ TSP contributions. Under BRS, the government does.