Military Status Verification
Plaintiffs conduct military status verifications to determine if a person is on active military duty. Courts require these verifications in connection with the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). The SCRA affords certain protections to people who are
- On active military duty
- Called up for military duty, or
- Recently retired.
The Court wants to know if the person being sued is entitled to those protections or not.
The goal of the SCRA is to allow the men and women serving their country to do so without worries of default judgments, evictions, foreclosures or some other legal actions. The SCRA requires plaintiffs to conduct military status verifications in certain situations to ensure the protection of the servicemembers’ rights.
Before a court will enter a default judgment, the judge will almost always require that the plaintiff (the lender, landlord or whoever is trying to get a judgment) submit a military affidavit. Other names for military affidavits include
- Nonmilitary affidavits
- Affidavits of military service or
- Affidavits in compliance with the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act.
In an affidavit, the plaintiff swears they have done a military status verification showing whether the individual is on active military duty.
Get Required Verification
The plaintiff has to be thorough. This is necessary because the SCRA is a federal statute carrying severe penalties. Plaintiffs who cavalierly execute an affidavit without conducting the required military status verification may be in violation of this statute.
The courts generally require that the military affidavit, resulting from the verification, be dispositive, meaning the judge usually wants a yes-or-no answer. He/She doesn’t want any ambiguous statements or disclaimers.
Judges may reject military affidavits that say the results are not guaranteed because the Social Security number is unavailable. This illustrates why it is important to use the SCRACVS, rather than the DMDC, if the social security number is unknown. Thus, the SCRACVS becomes the one-stop solution for all SCRA verifications.
Comparing the DMDC with SCRACVS
Experienced lenders, servicers, attorneys, debt collectors and business owners use the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Centralized Verification Service (SCRACVS). It’s a one-stop resource for securing military status verifications. The SCRACVS, based in Washington, D.C., accesses the United States Department of Defense DMDC SEERS database. And we can usually perform the SCRA military status verifications even if the Social Security number is unavailable.
Frequently Asked Questions
Military Status is what determines if a person is eligible for the benefits of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act. The SCRA at 50 U.S.C. 3911 defines a servicemember as “a member of the uniformed services, as that term is defined in section 101(a)(5) of title 10.”
To obtain proof of military service on a person (to determine whether the person is eligible for SCRA protections, the best, one-stop resource is the SCRACVS at www.ServicemembersCivilReliefAct.com. As opposed to the DMDC resource, the SCRACVS allows you to verify service even if you do not have a social security number or date of birth and you can obtain notarized affidavits, all at a very low cost.
Certain, limited records are public. The SCRACVS redacts social security numbers and dates of birth.
At www.ServicemembersCivilReliefAct.com, after registration.