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ARLINGTON, Va. — The Army’s doubling of the bonus it offers to people who persuade someone to join the service, from $1,000 to $2,000, went into effect Nov. 13.

The referral bonus pilot program, which began Jan. 18, 2006, is open to soldiers, regardless of component or rank, and retirees.

People who make referrals will get their payout in two payments, according to Lt. Col. Bryan Hilferty, an Army personnel spokesman: $1,000 after the referral candidate completes basic training; and the second $1,000 after the soldier graduates from either One Station Unit Training or Advanced Individual Training.

The enlistment can be with either the active Army, the National Guard or the Army Reserves.

People making referrals, including retirees, can’t refer members of their immediate family, which the Army defines to include children (natural and step- or adopted), spouses, parents or stepparents, and brothers and sisters.

Cousins, uncles and aunts, and other extended family are eligible for referral.

Retired soldiers do not qualify for the bonus if they are serving in a recruiting or retention assignment or as a Junior ROTC [Reserve Officer Training Corps] instructor, Hilferty said.

The doubled bonus was authorized under the 2007 Defense Authorization bill, which President Bush signed into law in October.

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