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Military Fraternization Laws

What is fraternization in the military?

Fraternization is a term used when handling social relations between people who are not related and/or from a different rank that act as if they are siblings, family members, personal friends or lovers. Within the military, the officers and members that are enlisted in ranks are prohibited from personally associating with their professional duties. Overly familiar behavior between two officers of different ranks can be considered fraternization. Read below where many people have come to ask the Experts about many specific questions about fraternization.

Is an officer violating the fraternization rules when they have enlisted a person with no contact?

There doesn’t have to be a no contact order for an officer and an enlisted service member to be violating the fraternization rules. If there is an overly familiar relationship between these two people, then they will be considered as to violating the rules with or without a no contact order. If someone has any evidence that the officer either has violated a no contact order or that the officer has had an overly familiar relationship, then they are allowed to provide this information to his or her command.

If someone has been given an Article 15 for fraternization while deployed, and now being charged with breaking a no contact order can a E-7/SFC be charged for this?

It is possible for someone to be charged for breaking a no contact order. From what is stated this can be grounds for a chapter for misconduct or for a court marital. This can also be grounds to separate. In order to separate at a chapter, there is a requirement that military will provide with the service member a hearing and an attorney to assist the service member at the hearing.

Under the Navy and Military fraternization laws can a naval officer have a friendship status with a wife of an enlisted individual?

Fraternization rules do not apply to those who are non-military members, so a friendship status with an enlisted members spouse would be nothing more than that, and would not fall under those rules. If anything was overly familiar or prejudicial to good order and discipline would be crossing the line. One should just be aware of the difference between a friendship with a non-military member, and a relationship that involves regular social interactions with the enlisted spouse.

How long does an Army fraternization investigation take and what kind of evidence is required for conviction?

The length will all depend on how much evidence was involved. How many witnesses were there, and what the witnesses have to say. It can take up to months and sometimes even a year or they can also be done in just as short as a week. As for the evidence, there must be probable cause that this crime has been committed and the suspect is the one who has committed this crime. It’s not considered “beyond reasonable doubt” and the investigation can consider non admissible evidence such has hearsay, but there must be some sort of probable cause.

There are many reasons for anti-fraternization policies in the military and some of these can include the maintaining of discipline and chain of command, and can often prevent spreading military secrets to enemies. There are many reasons for the fraternization laws in the military ask an Expert for more information about those fraternization rules.
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