Share this: Overview Sincethe American Bar Association has had a strong, formal commitment to supporting the legal needs of America's military servicemembers and their dependents.
Getty Images Military. With the exception of those serving in combat zones or stationed outside the U.
Events leading up to America's entry into World War II in brought a new complexity of legal challenges, including proper implementation of "Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief Act of " legislation to ensure that the rights of our servicemembers and their families were not military personnel additional income by answering the call of duty.
The ABA contended that the requisite legal assistance for enforcement of these and other rights was integral to battle-readiness and troop morale.
Initially it led the way, helping to organize the bar to provide legal assistance to servicemembers. Inboth the U. Army and U. The ABA remained a steadfast advocate for the continuation of these legal protections and the need for legal assistance even at the end of hostilities.
Through American history of armed combat since, the need for such assistance is proved. Many of these matters present unique questions when applied to servicemembers who may relocate frequently military personnel additional income to whom special federal statutory regulations apply. Such work requires lawyers with expertise beyond that of the traditional civilian practitioner. Despite a steady increase in the number of military personnel and their families who qualify for legal assistance over the years, available resources for providing these services has decreased with military budget cuts.
Even for those funds allocated, they are only available for legal assistance "as resources permit. While some members of the military are more likely to secure appropriate legal counsel on their own, low-income servicemembers are at a disadvantage and should always know such assistance will be available, regardless of an inability to pay. Key Points Sincelegal assistance has been recognized as a vital part of battle-readiness and troop morale, allowing servicemembers to focus on their duties.
Legal assistance for soldiers and sailors willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for our nation and our security should not be a discretionary matter. The idea that a servicemember could fall in the line of duty intestate because they could not afford a lawyer is unconscionable. Legal assistance has traditionally been adequately funded.
One in three employees with a full-time job in held a second job, mostly to bring in more cash. A second job can bring in much-needed extra cash, provides additional job stability even in uncertain times and means plenty to do during an average workweek. The US military does provide wages and benefits, but with the rising cost of living and with families sometimes finding their expenses increasing, many military families turn to additional work to raise extra income. In addition, military spouses and family members sometimes have their own reasons for seeking extra work. They may like the idea of extra spending money or they may want to build their resume, even when stationed overseas.
Ensuring it as a matter of right would not increase funding; only require that funding never fall below a fraction of historical levels. Our servicemembers serve to protect our nation, but their focus is often on their families.
The legal needs and security of a servicemember's dependents are often inextricable from those of the servicemember. Accordingly, the guarantee of assistance should extent to the families, as well.
ABA Policy The ABA supports legislation guaranteeing for low-income military personnel, pay grade E-6 and below, and their dependents, legal assistance as a matter of right.
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