Financial Readiness for Post-Military Life

Whether you’re separating or retiring from military service, transition to civilian life can be both exciting and stressful. On the one hand, you may enjoy a wide range of new professional and personal opportunities. On the other, you must leave behind your rank or grade — and with it, a large part of your identity and the lifestyle you’ve known for years.

Stress is common — and natural — at this time. But some thoughtful planning, including careful financial planning, is a proactive approach to your transition that can help reduce stress on both you and your family.

Transition GPS

Transition Goals Plans Success (GPS) or Transition GPS, is a program designed by an interagency team with members from the Department of Defense, Department of Veterans Affairs, Department of Labor, Department of Education, Department of Homeland Security, Office of Personnel Management and the Small Business Administration. The program is designed to ease your transition to civilian life. It consists of the following modules:

  • Financial planning
  • Translation of military skills, training and experience into civilian sector skills language
  • VA Benefits Briefing
  • Individual Transition Plan development
  • Employment Workshop
  • Optional tracks: Education, career technical training and entrepreneurship.

Critical Steps to Help You on Your Transition Pathway

Download a print-friendly PDF of the graphic.

Plan financially for transition and post-military life

A number of other resources are available to help you plan for and successfully move into your post-military life., an official DOD web site for information on transitioning from military service, is an excellent resource for servicemembers leaving active duty. You can find information on eligibility for additional separation pay or unemployment compensation when you leave service; whether you may qualify for Social Security benefits such as retirement income, disability benefits, Medicare medical insurance and survivor benefits; and qualifying for a government-sponsored loan, such as a VA home loan, an SBA small-business loan, or a Farmers Home Administration loan.

Your installation’s Family Center may offer presentations and workshops on topics such as family budgets, consumer rights, credit management, debt liquidation, investments, insurance and taxes.

For assistance making the financial transition, contact a trusted First Command Financial Advisor.


Hiring Our Heroes Project Sanctuary First Command Educational Foundation Marine Corps Marathon Army FPA Alliance