H.R. 4201 Servicemember Family Protection Act

We have been working with a number of military families who, while deployed, are at risk of losing custody rights while protecting our country. A government committee is currently working on drafting a new bill that would strengthen our service members’ rights in child custody disputes. Miltary parents in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada could benefit from this potential bill.

The Servicemember Family Protection Act (H.R. 4201) would prevent family court judges from ruling against our military members in child custody cases based solely on past or future deployments. Supporters of the bill believe that the simple fact of military lifestyle should not unfairly prevent that parent from being awarded custody.

H.R. 4201 states : For servicemembers who deploy for periods between 60 days and 18 months, this bill would restrict courts from considering those absences when determining permanent child-custody arrangements. The bill also would require the reinstatement of custody orders in effect preceding any deployment or anticipated deployment of the servicemember (unless a court finds that reinstatement is not in the child’s best interest) and provide servicemembers with either the protections under this bill or applicable state law, whichever is most favorable.

Some of our military have been scrutinized for leaving their children in the custody of a grandparent, stepparent or other family member when they deploy. It is in the best interests of servicemembers to communicate regularly about the status of future deployments.  While the law would give military parents more leverage during deployment, parents should also be taking appropriate measures to ensure that, as always, the well-being of their children is a priority.

For more information about military divorce and custody actions, please call or contact our office today.