Pay At OCS

Pay at OCS

Congratulations, you scored a “paid internship.” Now, how will you receive pay at Officer Candidate School?

Pay at OCS is through the standard military pay system (DFAS). Prior to shipping to OCS, candidates will submit direct deposit forms and a voided check to their Officer Selection Office. This will be included in the pre-ship paperwork you will complete with your OSO.

Candidates are paid at the pay grade of E-5 (Sergeant pay grade), “or the highest pay grade achieved if” entering… “directly from current service at a pay grade above E-5.” This means you will be paid at least as an E-5, but current Marines¬†will not get a pay cut. Candidates,¬†being paid as a E-5 does not make you a Sergeant. Do not make that mistake.

Pay and BAH at OCS

Married candidates can receive a Basic Allowance for Housing stipend, they will need to show proof of marriage, naturally. In order to qualify, one would fill out forms with their OSO and at OCS. They may need to show proof of lease/mortgage–so talk to your OSO ahead of time to get this done in a timely manner.

OCS Pay Chart

Current Pay Chart (2020) can be found here.



I highly recommend setting up recurring bills such as rent, car payments, credit cards, etc on autopay. This will give you more peace of mind at OCS and might save you some late fees.

Gear issue¬†will be several hundred dollars. Additionally, I would recommend saving $300 as a safety cushion for OCS. It’s not unusual for pay issues to occur.

You incur leave days (2.5 a month) while at OCS, however, you will not be able to use them. When you graduate OCS, they will be “sold” and you will get the value of the days you have accrued. This ensures that if you don’t commission you will not ¬†have a leave balance on MOL. ¬†This does not apply to active duty Marines (ECP/MECEP) or those who go straight to TBS.

Tax Time

When tax time comes, create an account with DFAS and you will get leave and earnings statements.


Prior Service Marines, there have been issues with pay at OCS. Submit required paperwork with your S-1 and monitor your pay while at OCS. As usual, any issues will be routed through the Training Company First Sergeant.

Candidates, what questions do you have about pay at OCS?

7 thoughts on “Pay At OCS

  1. Do you receive any sort of pay grade after OCS while going through school during the PLC program? I’m not talking about tuition assistance, but monthly pay. Not too sure how I will pull off supporting my family while going to school full time.

    1. While you don’t receive a monthly stipend, you are paid as an E-5 at OCS. You can see the pay chart online and calculate how much you’ll make depending on which PLC program you do. Also, keep in mind that you don’t have to physically attend a school to qualify for the program. Many working adults can manage a full time online class load if they pick the right online school and program. Your OSO can help you figure out which program still qualifies for the full time requirement.

  2. Do Single Officer Candidates on a reserve contract also qualify for BAH to cover their existing mortgage or rent payments?

    1. Hi Devin! Single officer candidates, regardless of contract, will not qualify for BAH. Additionally, you will not receive BAH while at TBS because they are providing you a place to live. Let me know if you have additional questions.

      1. Thank you for the response, ma’am! I recently came across this link that states “EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY, RC MARINES WITHOUT DEPENDENTS MAY BE AUTHORIZED A BAH WHILE ATTENDING ACCESSION TRAINING.” Would this only pertain to USMC enlisted reservists? I know Army reservists qualify for BAH during their officer training.

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