2020 Military Pay

Updated: December 24, 2022
In this Article

    The 2020 military pay increase will be 3.1% as announced by the Department of Defense on Dec. 12.

    The DoD labels this increase as “the largest in a decade” and in fact, it is the largest since a 3.4% increase in 2010.

    See the 2020 military pay charts with a 3.1% pay increase or the 2021 military pay charts with a proposed 3 percent increase based on the DOD Fiscal Year 2021 Budget Proposal.

    New pay rates are effective Jan. 1, 2020 and will be reflected on the paychecks that will be issued on Jan. 15, 2020.

    See 2024 military pay rates and charts here.

    Typical Next Steps for a Military Pay Increase

    • President Trump releases his budget proposal for 2020 – Completed March 11, 2019
    • Spring/Summer – House & Senate Armed Appropriations Committees work defense budget
    • Fall/Winter – House & Senate pass the defense budget
    • 12/20/2019: President Trump signed the defense budget  that will keep the government funded through Sept. 30, averting the possibility of a shutdown

    The annual pay increase for service members is determined by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Cost Index and growth in private-sector wages. However, by law, Title 37, Chapter 19, Section 1009, the President can set an alternate pay raise which is being proposed in the 2019 Defense Budget, and is typical of most years.

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    Historical Military Pay Raises by Year

    YearMilitary Pay RaiseYearMilitary Pay Raise
    20234.6%19924.2%
    20222.7%19914.1%
    20213%19903.6%
    20203.1%19894.1%
    20192.6%19882%
    20182.4%19873%
    20172.1%19863%
    20161.3%19854%
    20151%19844%
    20141%19834%
    20131.7%198214.3%
    20121.6%198111.7%
    20111.4%19807%
    20103.4%19795.5%
    20093.9%19787.1%
    20083.5%19774.8%
    2007 *2.7%19765.%
    20063.1%19755.52%
    20053.5%19746.2%
    2004 *4.2%19736.7%
    2003 *4.7%19727.2%
    2002 *6.9%19717.9%
    20014.1%19708.1%
    20006.2%196912.6%
    19993.6%19686.8%
    19982.8%19675.6%
    19973%19663.2%
    19962.4%1965E: 11% O: 6%
    19952.6%19642.5% - 8.5%
    19942.2%196312.6%
    19933.7%1962None

    * 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2007 are the average percentage raise as military pay raises differed for various military pay grades.

    2020 military pay increases are for all branches of the U.S. Armed Forces; Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines, Navy, Space Force and Reserve forces where applicable.

    Written by Veteran.com Team