Compensation & Benefits

People are the Navy's most important asset. The Navy JAG Corps takes care of its lawyers and their families to ensure they are ready to meet its professional challenges.


The Navy JAG Corps offers active duty judge advocates a competitive starting salary. The total compensation includes basic pay and certain non-taxable allowances, such as those for housing and subsistence. Housing allowances vary according to the cost of living in the area to which you are assigned. Pay increases come with promotion and longevity. For more information regarding basic pay and allowances, visit Military Pay.

Health and Life Insurance

Retention Bonuses

Navy JAG Corps officers are eligible for a total of $110,000 in retention bonuses, paid over three installments are different career milestones (at approximately the five-year mark, eight-year mark, and 11-year mark). Military Justice Career Litigation Track (MJCLT) attorneys are eligible for an additional $10,000 bonus at each payment phase. JAG Corps officers can use retention bonuses for anything, including paying off any student debt.

Education Financial Assistance

  • School debt repayment: Military service in the Navy JAG Corps qualifies for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program and an income-driven repayment plan.
  • Funded Graduate Education: Navy judge advocates have the opportunity for fully funded graduate education leading to award of a Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree. Navy judge advocates have attended graduate programs at civilian law schools such as Harvard, Georgetown, Columbia, George Washington University, University of Pennsylvania, Berkeley, University of San Diego, Lewis and Clark, University of Virginia, and many others. Areas of study include military law, international law, environmental law, and trial advocacy. Post-graduate opportunities also exist at the Army Judge Advocate General’s School, Naval War College, Defense Intelligence Agency, National Defense University, and the Army War College.
  • GI Bill & Transferability: Transferability option under the Post-9/11 GI Bill allows service members to transfer all or some unused benefits to their spouse or dependent children


  • This system, called the Blended Retirement System, or BRS, blends the traditional legacy retirement pension, also known as a defined benefit, with government payments made into your individual Thrift Savings Plan, or TSP, account, also known as a defined contribution.

Time Off

  • 30 days paid vacation each year.
  • 11 paid federal holidays per year.
  • Sick leave for personal medical needs or care of family members and adoption.

Life and Work Balance

  • 18 weeks of paid parental leave for service members who give birth; 12 weeks of parental leave for service members that adopt children or whose spouse has given birth.
  • Subsidized child care, an exceptional family member program, and youth programs.
  • Department of Defense schools in some geographic locations.
  • Recreational discounts and services through Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) programs.
  • Family support services include Family Advocacy, Parenting, Personal Financial Management, Relocation Assistance, Spouse Employment Assistance, Spouse Tuition Aid, and Transition Assistance Programs.


  • Foreign duty and travel opportunities through temporary or permanent assignments.
  • Discounted travel.

Moving Assistance

The Department of Defense will contract with a commercial mover for the movement of your household goods to your first permanent duty station. Both you and your family are reimbursed for travel expenses from home directly to your first duty station. Subsequent moves to other duty stations, including your final move returning you to your home of record upon release from active duty, will be at the Government’s expense.

Of note, only the officer is entitled to travel expenses to Newport, RI for Officer Development School (ODS) and Naval Justice School (NJS) training, and household goods are not moved to Newport, RI. This is because of the short amount of time the officer will remain in this location before moving permanently to their first duty station.

Additional Privileges

  • Access to military exchanges (worldwide chain of tax-free “department stores”), which sell brand-name items at discounts.
  • Access to military commissaries (tax-free grocery stores) that save military families approximately 25% on their food bills.
  • Use of officers clubs around the world.
  • VA Guaranteed Home Loan Program.