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I am active duty Army. Can my chain of command make me

Customer Question
Hello, I am active...

Hello, I am active duty Army. Can my chain of command make me attend a function that takes place outside of duty hours?

Lawyer's Assistant: Are you overseas or stateside?

Overseas

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to anyone in the chain of command about this?

Yes and they have thrown out the word "mandatory". by my knowledge if they make it our place of duty then they need to provide compensatory time out of another duty day?

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

Just that I would love to know which regulations I can turn to for assistance with these matters. This has been a common occurance with our new commander and it is wearing us all thin,

Submitted: 7 months ago.Category: Military Law
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Answered in 1 hour by:
12/14/2017
Military Lawyer: Marsha411JD, Lawyer replied 7 months ago
Marsha411JD
Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 20,934
Experience: Licensed attorney and former Navy JAG serving ashore, afloat and at the OJAG
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Hello,

Thank you for your post. I am not sure where you might have gotten the idea that a Command cannot mandate attendance at a function any time during the day or night or that in order to do so they must provide "compensatory" time, but that is not the case under military regulations or law. The only exception would be if there is a local regulation at the Battalion or Command level that gives soldiers more rights than the general rule that you are soldiers 24/7 and can be directed to attend any military related function at any time.

If you do know of such a local instruction, then that would be what you would need to speak to your chain of command about. In practice, it is true that some commands will give some time off during the normal "duty day" for attendance at a special mandatory function outside of those hours, but that is completely within the discretion of the CO.

Please feel free to ask for clarification if you need it or provide the instruction you believe applies so that I can address whether or not it provides you with the relief you are seeking. If no further assistance is needed, then if you could reply to this answer and let me know that I covered your question, then the Site will give me credit for assisting you today.

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Customer reply replied 7 months ago
Can you site regulations that provide the information on what is considered an order vs strongly encouraged? Also what is there to protect a soldier from repercussions for not attending functions that are "strongly recommended"
Military Lawyer: Marsha411JD, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

There isn't a regulation that defines an "order" because it is obvious what an order versus strongly recommended is. An order is a mandate, like you must and you will, shall, etc, just like we learned in school. That is the same definition used in courts, whether civilian or military. In other words, just as the word is defined. Anything less than that is not an order but, as you mentioned, a recommendation, suggestion, urging, etc. Only a violation of an order is subject to disciplinary action. However, from an esprit d'corps standpoint, which could effect how much of a team player a CO sees a soldier, they can consider all sorts of things in terms of community involvement and behavior, whether they community is civilian or military.

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Military Lawyer: Marsha411JD, Lawyer replied 7 months ago

Hello again,

I wanted to touch base with you and make sure that you did not have any further follow up questions for me from the answers I provided to you on the 14th. For some reason, the Experts are not always getting replies, or ratings (at the top of the question/answer page you are viewing or in the pop up box for this question), which is how we get credit (paid by the Site) for our work, that the customer thinks have gone through. In your case I have not received your rating.

Please keep in mind that I cannot control the law or your circumstances, and am ethically bound to provide you with accurate information based on the facts you give me, even if the news is not good. If you are having technical difficulties with reading, replying or rating, please let me know so that I can inform the Site administrator. Please note that Site use works best while using a computer and using either Google Chrome or Firefox.

In any event, it was a pleasure assisting you and I would be glad to attempt to assist you further on this issue, or a new legal issue,if needed. You can bookmark my page at: http://www.justanswer.com/law/expert-marsha411jd/

Thank you.

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