A – Before you receive your posting instruction
COVID-19 and the Defence Team
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Before continuing, review the notes on the main page.
Video: Part A - Preparation
Get ready: update your budget
Updating your budget by completing the SISIP Financial's budget sheet is an excellent way to get ready for your posting.
Consider using your completed budget sheet as a starting point for discussing your financial situation with a financial advisor during a SISIP Financial counselling session. You can schedule your session on line or by calling 1-800-267-6681.
If you are already struggling financially due to the challenges of serving in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), you or your family can apply for financial help through Support Our Troops. Learn more at www.cafconnection.ca.
When completing your budget sheet, be sure to include gains or losses that are the results of Environmental Allowances. Allowance rates vary considerably according to posting location. For example, the Post Living Differential (PLD) Compensation and Benefits Instructions (CBI) 205.45 allowance may not be available where you plan to reside at your new place of duty. Check with your unit or base orderly room staff.
Be aware of the impact of tax rates on your income when you move to another province.
You can find more taxation information by consulting the Tax implications guide on relocation benefits for military personnel website.
You and every other eligible member of your family should consider getting a CF One card for access to the Canadian Forces Appreciation Program. You and each member of your family can have one. This official rebate program may help you reduce some of your daily expenses costs.
If your posting involves a move
Two distinct relocation policies govern military moves:
- the Compensation and Benefits Instructions (CBI) Chapter 208, and
- the CAF Relocation Directive (CAFRD).
To find out which directive applies to your situation, consult the CAFRD FAQ.
CBI Chapter 208 Moves
This directive covers untrained members (i.e. members not yet qualified) and members whose moves are prohibited. Learn more by referring to the Compensation and Benefits Instructions (CBI) Chapter 208 and by contacting your orderly room staff.
On 1 April 2021 the Canadian Armed Forces Relocation Directive (CAFRD) came into effect. This Directive replaced the Canadian Forces Integrated Relocation Program (CFIRP) Directive that was in effect from 19 April 2018 to 31 March 2021.
Both the current and former directives describe Treasury Board’s policy on the relocation of dependents and household goods and effects (HG and E) for CAF members. Learn more by contacting your base or wing relocation coordinators. This link is available only through the Defense Information Network (DIN) intranet. If you do not have access to the DIN, your orderly room staff may provide you with a list of relocation coordinators.
Section 2.2 of the CAFRD describes the responsibilities of the various parties who must work cooperatively to relocate military personnel and their families. This includes relocation coordinators and CAF members themselves.
You should note that the new CAFRD allows service couples to split their HG and E and to relocate independently when they are posted to two different places of duty. For more information, contact your BGRS service provider and review CAFRD Part 3 – Special Circumstances – Chapter 10 – Service Couples.
Moving outside Canada (OUTCAN) and Military Foreign Service Instructions
If you are moving outside of Canada (OUTCAN), the OUTCAN page on our website provides information on topics such as operations, education and training, spousal employment, and the CAF community. The CAFconnection.ca web site has information on moving to Europe or to the United States.
If you have children, review our web page on Children's Education outside Canada and the related screening process.
Things you should consider before you move
- Consult the CAF Relocation Directive (CAFRD) as soon as possible.
- Be prepared for your first meeting with BGRS by noting your questions.
- Review the following two DIN links:
- the Relocation Assistance Document (RAD), and
- the “Relocation management” tab in the “Benefits – Generic” section of the Chief of Military Personnel web site.
- Start thinking about possible moving dates. Do you or your family have commitments or events that you need to consider before you relocate? Examples include an upcoming child birth or adoption, a scheduled surgery, or a child’s graduation. You can discuss the possibility of a reporting date change with your chain of command, if necessary.
- Make an inventory of your belongings. Are there things such as a pool table, for example, that you cannot or do not wish to move to your new home?
- Think about the things like a children’s play structure that you may have to disassemble yourself.
- Ask about the dangerous goods that your moving company may refuse to move.
Explore the state of the real estate market. Compare your current house or rental prices with those of your new place of duty. Housing Market Information and Canadian Real Estate Magazine can provide useful information.
Keep in mind the following factors:
- Some financial institutions will consider your family to be a single income family if your spouse or partner does not have proof of employment at the new place of duty.
- Comparing house prices on the Canadian Real Estate Association's web sitemay give you an indication of a potential financial gain or loss if you sell your home.
- The Homebuying Calculatorsprovided by the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) include mortgage, affordability, and debt service calculators.
- Canadian Defence Community Banking (CDCB) offers exclusive mortgage rates for military members, including portable mortgages and the possibility of a mortgage break without penalty, if you are relocated under the CAF Relocation Directive.
Keep in mind the following factors:
- Determine if military housingis available at your new location.
- Compare the price of rentacross Canada.
- Check the CMHCweb site, an excellent source of information on the rights and responsibilities of tenants and landlords as well as on rental practices across the country.
- Find out about the province and territory specific information for tenants.
Services and resources available to you and your family
Whatever your relationship and parental status, consult the list of Military Family Resource Centres (MFRCs). These Centres are available to help every member of the Defence community. The MFRC web page offers links to useful information on employment opportunities, schools, special needs, childcare as well as a variety of social and community activities.
Your parents can also obtain support from Military Family Services (MFS).
Children’s Education and Well-Being
Some MFRCs offer activities to better prepare children for a possible move. Check your local MFRC website for more information.
Moving after separation or divorce? – Since 1 Mar 2021, if you are married or divorced and have children, you must tell your spouse or former spouse if you are moving, even if you are moving without the children. Learn more by consulting the Information for families page of the Department of Justice Canada web site. This page offers three user-friendly forms you can complete for giving notice about relocations and for objecting to a child’s relocation:
- Notice of Relocation Form,
- Objection to Relocation Form, and
- Notice of change in place of residence: Person with Contact.
Other web sites offer resources for children and youth such as Crisis Texting Service for Kids of CAF Families, helpful ideas on how to make a move easier for your children or what to do if your child is upset about your relocation.
Helpful information about children’s education includes the following four web sites:
- The Starting Kindergarten Mapprovides information on the provincial and territorial regulations for pre-kindergarten and kindergarten enrollment in Canada.
- The Graduation Requirements Mapidentifies graduation requirements as well as the requirements for getting a Secondary School Diploma in every Canadian province and territory.
- The Children's Education outside Canadaoutlines the steps for completing Children’s Education Screening if you are planning for an OUTCAN posting.
- The School Transition Portfoliotracks your child’s educational progress.
The Support Our Troops assistance program will also help you and your family face the challenges of military service.
Notify your child’s school or daycare about your move as soon as possible and request a copy of their school records. You should make this request before starting your house hunting trip (HHT). This will be useful when the time comes to register your children at their future school. If your child has special needs, ask what services will be available at the destination. Need some assistance? The Family Information Line (FIL) 24/7 can help.
Spousal and partner employment
Look for job opportunities listed in the Help for Employment page or the Employment Opportunities at Bases/Wings page of the CAFConnection.ca web site. You can also find information and resources on our web page on Military Spousal/Partner Employment. Check with provincial or territorial agencies about Professional Accreditation.
If you are moving outside Canada and the United States, your spouse or partner may not qualify for regular employment insurance. Learn more by consulting the Employment and Social Development Canada web page on Employment Insurance and workers and residents outside Canada. You can also review our web page on Employment Insurance available to Military Families.
Health care (medical and dental)
Review the CAFConnection.ca web page on Access to medical care for military families as well as our web page on Military Families' Access to Health Care to learn about health care services available at your new location.
Ask your current medical care provider for copies of your family’s medical, vaccination, and dental records, as well as any current prescriptions. Confirm how to transfer their files to your new care providers.
- Use the Family Information Line (FIL)to obtain support for you and your family in areas such as finances, logistics, and special needs counselling. The FIL can be reached 24/7 at 1-800-866-4546 (North America), 00-800-771-17722 (international), 1-613-995-5234 (collect calls) or by e-mail at FIL@connexionFAC.ca.
- Learn about military life by consulting A Family Guide to the Military Experience.
- Join MyVoice, a forum open to all military families where your input can help improve programs and services for you and your family.
- Military Family Services also provides information about their available resources and services via Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.
Date modified : 2021-05-28
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