• The MyRuck Team

Confused about order types? Title 10, 32, ESAD?

Updated: Apr 16, 2020

So you've been activated to deploy, engage and destroy our nation's newest threat, the invisible enemy, COVID-19. As you lie awake on your cot at the armory at night (or for the lucky ones, some other locale), you may contemplate your current situation. You may have heard the terms Title 10, Title 32, SAD or ESAD, or a number of other terms and acronyms thrown around, but aren't exactly sure what they mean. Read on, and we here are MyRuck will help you understand the differences and how the affect you.

Title 10 - Federal Active Duty

When I was a young, bright eyed private, my voicemail message alerted callers that I was busy doing something important for the President. Although meant as a joke, this was technically true, as I was on active duty under Title 10 of the U.S. Code. For Guard members, you will be on Title 10 orders for any federal mission (think deployments and certain training like AIT/BOLC). Under these orders, the President is your boss too.

Title 32 -State Specific Orders

The vast majority of you right now are on Title 32 orders. Title 32 is simply state specific missions that the federal government pays for, like the #Coronacrisis or full-time Guard positions. Although Uncle Sam is footing the bill, your state's Governor is now at the top of the chain of command.

Title 32 - Emergency State Active Duty (ESAD)

This goes by a variety of names depending on the state you're serving in. Here in California, it's known as State Active Duty (SAD) or Emergency State Active Duty (ESAD). Whatever name your state has for it, this occurs when you are called up for a state specific mission that is funded by the state. Unlike Title 10 and 32, in these situations, you become an employee of the state and receive state benefits.


For Title 10 and Title 32, you are compensated just like our active duty counterparts. You are paid based off of the standard military pay chart you all are familiar with. 1 month of continuous service will equal the pay rate for your grade and time in the table here.

For periods under a month, simply plug your details into the formula below:

(Days on Orders / Days in Month) x Pay Rate

Additionally, you will be entitled to non-taxable allowances such as BAS and BAH (you can check rates for both in the links provided). However, if you are on orders for less than 30 days, you will receive BAH II, which is, on average, less than BAH I.

- 2020 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH):

- 2020 Basic Allowance for Sustanance (BAS):

For state activation, as you are employed by the state, your pay will not be based off of the standard military pay chart. It varies substantially from state to state. I know, I know, those tax free allowances are sweet and I bet you think you'll be missing out. But states can pay well too. For example, in California, you can make over six figures on an annualized basis on State Active Duty.

Retirement Benefits

Under Titles 10 and 32, you simply earn 1 retirement point for each day served. For state activation, you most likely will accrue retirement benefits (if any) from your state's retirement fund.

Other Benefits

For Title 10 and 32, your time on orders counts towards eligibility for VA benefits (which we will dive deeper into in future blog posts). Additionally, if you serve more than 30 days on orders, you and your family members will automatically be enrolled in Tricare Prime. For those unfamiliar, Tricare Prime is a great healthcare plan that allows you and your dependents to see primary and specialty care providers at no out of pocket cost (though you will need to see network providers and receive referrals for specialists.) Alternatively, you can opt into the Tricare Select plan that will allow you to see doctors of your choice as well as specialists with no referral, though there is a cost sharing component, which is capped at $1,000 per year.

At the risk of sounding like a broken record, for state activation's, other benefits earned will be dependent entirely on what your state offers.

Hopefully this post will help you understand the differences between activation statuses and what they mean to you. In subsequent blog posts, we will be going into more details about benefits you've potentially earned. Ultimately, the MyRuck app will provide a one stop shop for you to track and apply for those benefits (yes, even those earned through state activation).

Reference Links:

2020 Military Pay Chart:

2020 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH):

2020 Basic Allowance for Sustanance (BAS):

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