IDF Seeks to Pay Back Long-Demoblized Soldiers

IDF soldiers seen during a training drill at the Tze’elim army base. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

The IDF has a big bonus waiting for thousands of soldiers who served between 1992 and 2000. Over NIS 110 million is sitting in IDF accounts awaiting collection by soldiers who never withdrew their demobilization bonuses. According to the army, tens of thousands of soldiers are eligible for the payments.

Most of the soldiers are owed small amounts of money, Defense Ministry officials said. Some 70 percent of the soldiers are owed NIS 1,000 or less, while 20 percent are owed between NIS 1,000 and 5,000. The rest are owed between NIS 5,000 and 10,000. Officials said that in most cases the soldiers were either not aware that they were owed money, or felt that the sums were too small to worry about. With interest, the payments have in many cases grown considerably.

Soldiers who entered the IDF after December 31, 2000 receive increased payments upon demobilization – but have seven years to collect their payments. If they do not, according to the current law, the money reverts back to the Defense Ministry.