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Last Updated: 5/23/2016

Credit for Military Service in a Combat Zone

You may qualify for this credit if you served in a combat zone or qualified hazardous duty area on or after Jan. 1, 2012.  This credit is based on the number of months served and is refundable, you may qualify to receive it even if you had no income or owed no tax.
 
 

 Credit for Service in a Combat Zone video

 
 
For other tax-related issues that affect service members, see Fact Sheet 5 - Military - Residency or Fact Sheet 5a - Military - Subtractions, Credits, and Extensions.
 

Am I eligible?

You are eligible to receive this credit if you meet all of the following requirements:
  • You served in a combat zone or qualified hazardous duty area anytime on or after Jan. 1, 2012.
  • The pay you received is excluded as combat pay from federal gross income under Internal Revenue Code Section 112.
  • You were a Minnesota resident.
The credit is based on the number of full and/or partial months served.
 
For more information about combat zones and qualifying hazardous duty areas:

How do I claim the credit?

To claim the credit, complete Form M99, Credit for Military Service in a Combat Zone, for the year when you served in a combat zone or qualifying duty area.  This credit is separate from your income tax and can be filed any time during the year. To receive a refund, you must:
  • file Form M99 within 3½ years from the original due date of your tax return; and
  • include documentation, as described below, with your form.

To complete Form M99, Credit for Military Service in a Combat Zone, for a previous year, go to prior year forms.

How long do I have to claim the credit?

You have 3½ years from the original due date of your tax return to claim the credit. The credit for months served in a combat zone from January 1, 2012 to December 31, 2012 will expire October 15, 2016.

Individual circumstances may exist that extend the time allowed to file for these credits. If you spent additional days in a combat zone after the filing due date of the return, you can add the number of additional days plus 180 days to the initial 3½ year statute of limitations to claim the credit on Form M99.

Example: If you served in a combat zone in 2011, you had to file your 2011 Form M99 by October 15, 2015 to meet the 3½ year statute of limitations. However, starting on June 1, 2012 you spent 60 days in a combat zone. You would have an additional 240 days to claim the credit (60 days plus 180 days). Therefore, you would have until June 10, 2016 (240 days after October 15, 2015) to file 2011 Form M99.

What documentation is needed?

To apply for the Military Credit for Service in a Combat Zone, you need the following documentation:
  • National Guard, Reservists, and retired or discharged active-duty members: For each period of qualifying service, attach a copy of your Form DD-214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty.
  • Active-duty members: For each month in qualifying status, attach a copy of your Leave and Earnings Statement.

What if I do not have copies of the required documentation?

You may order copies of the necessary records, as outlined below.  You should request the required documentation as soon as possible to avoid delays when filing for the credit.
If you cannot get your Leave and Earnings Statements through MyPay, request assistance by calling the appropriate phone number below:
 
Army (active duty):​ 1-888-332-7411
Army (Reserve):​ 1-877-462-7782​
Army (National Guard):​ 1-877-276-4729
Navy (active duty/Reserve):​ 1-888-332-7411
Air Force (active duty/Reserve/National Guard):   ​ 1-888-332-7411​
Marine Corps (active duty/Reserve):​ 1-888-332-7411​