Military Law

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Military Legal Assistance

What is Military legal assistance?

Military Lawyers are called Judge advocates (JAG). JAGs can offer help in legal and non-legal matters ranging from purchasing a car to renting an apartment, buying a home, paying taxes or writing a will. A "judge advocate is an attorney who has graduated from an accredited law school, and is licensed to practice law by the highest court of a state or by a federal court and is available for military personnel as well as their families. However many times, people in the military wonder if Military legal assistance can help them in any way. Read below a few of the questions that has been answered by the Experts.

If a wife is currently separated from her husband who has just been deployed to Iraq and their Military identification card has expired what should he/she?

Typically, the first step is to visit the Base Personnel Office and hand over the expired ID, and request that the individual’s ID be renewed. If they won’t do it, they will tell you the reason and the next step. If they tell you that he must submit a form then ask him. If he refuses, contact his commander and ask for assistance. Each unit has a “rear D” or Rear Detachment” at their base and they are for the support of the local troops and family.

Can military legal assistance help a widow of an Air Force Veteran put their assets in a trust fund?

Legal assistance offices within the military bases provide varying levels of service to the military and their families. A trust is a complex topic with many outside laws and requires significant knowledge of state law. Some military legal assistance offices will offer this service others will not. Check with your local base, they may be able to help.

If someone is the Army OneSource Community Support Coordinator for SC, and is currently searching for lawyers that support the Military with either free or reduce services in SC where could they obtain information for military lawyers.

There are several places you can get this information.

1. The LAMP committee of the ABA is a committee of the ABA specially for addressing problems of providing legal assistance to military personnel. Active duty, retired, and dependents can get free assistance from the base legal office.
2. The State AFB, SJA, usually maintain a list of local lawyers.
3. Navy Legal Service Office at Charleston, they too will have a list.
4. Check with the SC Bar Association; ask if you can be put in touch with the Chairman of the Military Law Committee.
5. Contact the Administrative Law Divisions of the Air Force and Navy, and ask them for input.

If a couple are in the process of a divorce, will the military appoint legal representative for the wife or is Military legal assistance solely for the person that is in the military?

Military legal assistance can answer any questions you may have, however they cannot represent a person that is not in the military or a soon to be ex of a military officer. Legal assistance must be sought outside of the military.

How can someone get citizenship if their husband is in the military?

The individual could go to JAG, their military legal assistance office on their base. Whereas there is not a streamlined path to citizenship for spouses the same as for active duty members, the fact that she is married to someone in the military will give her easier path to either citizenship or residency.

Each military service has specific regulations regarding the extent of legal assistance they provide Legal assistance offices are located on almost every base, ship and installation. If you have trouble locating military legal assistance, you can contact the Experts for answers.
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