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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 32821
Experience:  Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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Sir, I am presently on AD USAF Lt Col who has 18 years of

Customer Question

JA: Because laws vary from state to state, could you tell me what state is this in?
Customer: Sir, I am presently on AD USAF Lt Col who has 18 years of service and maybe MEB out. Can you tell me if I am eligible for sanctuary status and what is my best course of action.
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?
Customer: no, not yet
JA: Anything else you think the lawyer should know?
Customer: no
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 2 months ago.

Hello! My name is ***** ***** I am a licensed attorney with more than 18 years of experience. I am here to assist you with your questions. Please understand that if I ask you for additional information, you are NOT charged again and our communications are NOT timed. So please see this as a relaxed conversation between friends. I am here to help

Also, if you would like to chat on the phone, let me know and I can make that happen.

Sorry....can you clarify what you mean by "sanctuary"...are you a reservist on active duty (this is typically where sanctuary applies)?

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am not a reservist on active duty, but regular air forceI had read that if you had 18 years in active federal service you could achieve sanctuary status. Is that true?
Expert:  P. Simmons replied 2 months ago.

Thank you

There is no law that will allow you to prevent the AF from running a MEB

If you have a medical issue that limits your ability to perform your duties? There is no law that would prohibit the Secretary of the Air Force from separating you (to free up space for an officer that can perform the requisite duties).

You do have rights...the MEB is required to show that you have a medical condition that limits your ability to perform your duties...if that is not the case (if you are fit for duty) you can challenge the MEB.

But there is no law that requires the Secretary of the AF to keep you on active duty to 20 years...if your injuries require separation you would be entitled to separation/retirement pay as well as VA compensation.

There are "sanctuary" rules that protect reservists who are on active duty at 18 + years...or enlisted members at 18+ years...but even in those cases, if the member is not fit for duty based on a medical condition they can be separated by a MEB.

In other words, MEB trumps "sanctuary"

This is the part of my job I don't like...when the law is not in favor of my customer. I wish I could tell you that you can claim sanctuary but I can only provide you information based on the law so that you can act on the best available information to you...I wish I had better news, but can only hope you recognize and understand my predicament and don't shoot the messenger. I'm sorry!

Please let me know if you have more questions. I am happy to help if I can. Otherwise, please rate the answer so I may get credit for my work.

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