What is an LES?
The LES is a monthly statement showing all pay changes and information for the month including entitlements (pay and allowances), deductions and allotments, and pay-related remarks. The LES contains the following summary:
Section A - (Personal Information): Contains information that specifically identifies you, such as you full name, Secial Security Number (SSN), pay grade, pay base date, years of service, and ETS.
Section B,C,D,E - (Entitlements/Deductions/Allotments/Summary): Lists the compensation that makes up your monthly pay, such a pay, allowances, taxes, deductions, garnishments (if any), and allotments. This section allows you to see exactly how your take home pay is calculated. Date of initial entry into military service (DIEMS) is the date you signed your contract committing to the military. The type of military retirement plan for which you are eligible is shown in "RETPLAN".
Section F - (Leave Summary): This is your beginning leave balance, the leave you have earned from the beginning of the fiscal year (1 Oct), and the leave you have used, cashed in or lost as a result of exceeding the maximum balance. Be certain to check "leave used" to make sure it is correct. Also check the "use/lose" block so you do not exceed the maximum allowable accrued leave.
Section G,H,I - (Tax Summary): This is the tax paid for the period and for the year. It shows the number of exemptions you claim for tax withholding. It is important to keep you December LES as a backup for other IRS documents (like a W-2) to use when doing your income tax preparation. Also, check the M/S and EX block listed in section G and I. This shows the marital status and number of exemptions you are surrently claiming. Most military members enter the service "S 00" (single claiming 0), and many forget to change this once they marry or have children. Changing this to the correct status can have a big effect on the amount of pay you receive. Many members find a significant increase in their monthly check when these items are correctly adjusted.
Section J - (Pay Data Summary): The specific information used to determine the allowances you are entitled to receive. The data includes dependent information, the zip code of your duty statiom, the amount you pay in rent if living "out-in-town" and unit identification numbers. Verify the zip code information to ensure that you are receiving the proper BAH for the area in which you are living.
Section K - (Thrift Savings Plan Summary): Information on TSP contributions. The rate boxes show percentage of pay specified for contribution. The current boxes show percentage of pay specified for contributed this pay period while the YTD shows the amount for the year. You can also view your TSP account at www.TSP.gov.
Section L - (Remarks): Notes from DFAS regarding your mmonthly statement or other information, such as the starting or stopping of allotments.