For several years now, the terms for Post Deployment/Mobilization Respite Absence (PDMRA) have been in effect for service members. Understanding these updates isn’t a simple task, so read on for a breakdown.
How does PDMRA leave work for service members?
First of all, PDMRA acts as the DoD’s equivalent of personal days for service sector workers. When Army, USMC or other soldiers deploy or mobilize more frequently than rotation policy goals allow, the soldiers are compensated with PDMRA, which are days of non-chargeable leave. When qualified, soldiers can accrue their 2.5 days of leave per month in addition to PDMRA.
The program breaks down like this:
-Soldiers earn one day of PDMRA leave per month after the 12th month of deployment.
-Once you’ve been deployed for 18 months, you earn two days of PDMRA leave per month.
-After the 24th month of deployment, soldiers earn four days of PDMRA leave per month.
The service must occur within a 36 months. So if you serve nine months but do not deploy again within three years, your PDMRA clock clears and you start at zero months of deployment. Reserve soldiers have 72 months to add up their service.
How is PDMRA Calculated?
Let’s look at a few examples, because a simple PDMRA calculator is not readily available.
If you serve for 16 months, you’ve earned four days of PDMRA leave. Twenty months of deployments lands you four days of leave. After 27 months, you’ve accrued 12 days of leave.
Deployment to Afghanistan, Iraq and other areas defined by the Secretary of the Army are always creditable under PDMRA. For Reserve soldiers, it gets more complicated. Involuntary mobilizations that fall under Title 10 U.S. code are creditable, as are voluntary mobilizations that are deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq. Also, for the Reserves, more than half of the mobilization in Afghanistan or Iraq must occur Boots on Ground (BOG) to qualify for PDMRA.
Soldiers can earn these days from previous deployments within the 36- or 72-month window, depending on active or Reserves status. Therefore if a soldier deployed on Sept. 1, 2010 then the creditable deployment time starts on Sept. 1, 2007. Reserves soldiers have a bigger window, thus allowing them to count all deployments within six years of being deployed on, say, Nov. 5, 2009. The start date for creditable deployment would be … Nov. 5, 2003.
PDMRA time cannot be added to R&R, but PDMRA can be used during any R&R leave period. Accrued PDMRA days can be used instead of chargeable annual leave at their home station. The days of leave can be used during Permanent Change of Station (PCS) travel, or within a year of returning from deployment. Those who are “not fit for duty” or who return from deployment because of an injury have a year to use PDMRA once they are “fit for duty.” ETS leave can be combined with PDMRA.
During transition leave and/or mobilization extension, PDMRA does not accumulate. It’s important to note that PDMRA has no cash value, thus no cash-out option like normal leave. If PDMRA is not used, it goes the way of the Dodo bird.
While on this type of leave, you’re still on active duty, so you cannot receive civilian pay during this leave of absence. However, through the 4187 process, you can receive Assignment Incentive Pay instead of taking the PDMRA days. Each day is worth $200, but the total AIP earned cannot pass $3,000 a month.