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Review Your Finances before Deploying

Deployment: It’s a basic fact of military life. It’s also one of the most challenging situations a military family can face. Lives and living situations change. Family routines are interrupted. Finances may be altered.

Before you’re deployed, you need to prepare for any possible life scenario. In short, you need to be ready for anything. This means making sure that your financial and legal matters are settled and your wishes are clearly understood.

Review your financial situation with your spouse or a trusted individual you have chosen to manage your finances during deployment.

  • Review your financial obligations, monthly expenses and bill due dates to ensure commitments will be met while you are deployed.
  • Establish direct deposit, automatic bill payment and electronic document delivery.
  • Ask your bank if they offer mobile banking to manage your accounts while you are deployed.
  • Establish joint accounts for your spouse and deliver copies of your power of attorney to your financial institutions so your spouse or the individual handling your affairs can manage situations as they arise.
  • Establish an emergency fund of at least 3 to 6 months of basic living expenses. Place this fund in a safe and accessible account to be used for financial emergencies only.

While you are deployed, routinely monitor your financial statements and credit report to check for charges to your accounts that you did not make. If you are unable to access your accounts, consider sharing passwords and personal identification numbers (PINs) with the trusted individual you have chosen to monitor your accounts. To help minimize the risk of identity theft, use caution when sharing this information.