Servicemembers Civil Relief Act

Those that know me know I am for the Veteran and those serving in the military.

I was doing a little exploring on the Internet this morning and ended up finding out about the many benefits available to active duty Servicemembers.   As you know, being sent to a foreign country and being put in harms way puts an enormous stress on their lives and those of their families.  It’s nice to know that “Uncle Sam has your back” here at home.  But I wonder how many people know about this?? Especially those actually serving or those who have recently returned.

Here are some of the protections afforded to active duty military members via the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act:

  • In the midst of a car lease?  Deploying for over 180 days? Just turn it back in to the leasing company and your lease is up. Without any penalties, interest, fees, charges, etc.  (Section 535)
  • Can’t use that cell phone in Iraq? Suspend or cancel your cell phone service.  NO early termination charges or fees apply.  (Section 535a)
  • All legal and court proceedings stayed (Sections 521-526)
  • Credit Card or Mortgage Interest rate too high?  Not any more. They can’t charge you more that 6% interest while serving.  It’s a federal law!  Did they?  Did it cost you penalties, over-limit charges?  You get them all REFUNDED.  (Section 527)
  • Renting? No evictions or imposition of distress on those remaining at home. (Section 531)
  • Leasing a home/apartment?  Need to relocate because of military orders? No problem. Your lease is up. No penalties. (Section 535)
  • No foreclosure during your military service and within 180 days after you return home. (Section 533)
  • Got something in storage?  They can’t repossess it and sell your stuff. (Section 537)
  • Can’t pay the life insurance?  No problem. Uncle Sam might pay it. It cannot be canceled.  (Section 536, 541-549)
  • Property Taxes? They’re tolled too! (Section 561)

Now, before you get the wrong idea, this is NOT a free ride for Service members.To that end, Section 581 provides for those who would seek to abuse and make a mockery out of these benefits and provisions.

It’s meant so that they don’t have to worry about taking care of their normal lives back home.  It’s so that they can focus and concentrate on staying alive without having to deal with “bullshit” back home.

I don’t know about you – but if I was in a foreign country and the “bad guys” could be anywhere and they want me dead – the last thing I would want to be worrying about is “Holy Shit.. I think I forgot the car payment.” There’s far more pressing things to worry about. Like my surroundings and staying alive.

So, pass the word to your friends and family who may have people in military service.  They need to know about this!

Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Full text of the law taken from Title 50 United States Code Appendix.  Learn about your rights so you can use them.

VFW_110thCongressBrochure A brochure from the VFW showing legislation passed by the 100th Congress to the benefit of Veterans