Defense Department extends deadline to request adoption reimbursement

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The Defense Department temporarily extended the deadline for adoption reimbursement requests in certain cases. This extension is in response to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The DOD provides a variety of support for service members seeking to adopt children. Reimbursement for qualified expenses is part of that support. Service members can apply for reimbursement of qualified expenses of up to $2,000 per adoptive child and up to $5,000 per calendar year.

Due to the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the department has extended the period of time during which parents can apply for reimbursement. DoD may accept applications for adoption reimbursement past the two-year deadline if the following criteria are met: 

  • The adoption was finalized between March 1, 2018, and Dec. 31, 2019.
  • For the adoption of foreign children, the certificate of U.S. citizenship was issued between March 1, 2018, and Dec. 31, 2019.
  • The application for reimbursement must be provided to the designated military service point of contact no later than Feb. 28, 2022.

The exception to policy is effective immediately and will remain in effect through Feb. 28, 2022. 

“The Defense Department recognizes the impacts of COVID-19 are far-reaching,” said Stacey Young, director of the Office of Military Family Readiness Policy. “This adoption reimbursement extension addresses some of those impacts by providing adoptive parents additional time to request reimbursement.”

For questions or additional information on the adoption reimbursement eligibility extension, view the exception to policy memo. For the complete policy, view DOD Instruction 1341.09, Adoption Reimbursement Policy

The Defense Department remains steadfast in its mission to support military families. The extension for adoption reimbursement eligibility assists adoptive parents who experienced challenges that affected their ability to file for reimbursement during the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more information about military adoption support, Military OneSource offers no-cost adoption consultations, as well as online military adoption information and resources. 

About Military Community and Family Policy 

Military Community and Family Policy is directly responsible for establishing and overseeing quality-of-life policies and programs that help our service members, their families and survivors be well and mission-ready. Military OneSource is the gateway to programs and services that support the everyday needs of the 5.2 million service members and immediate family members of the military community. These DOD services can be accessed 24/7/365 around the world.