Exercise Your Due Diligence

hand using a laptop computer with a virtual screen and document

Even though we may not report that the person is on active duty, you should be careful. Are you aware of other factors (besides our report) that should make you aware that the person is on active duty? Is there proximity to a military base? Have you seen the person in uniform or have you seen military gear, stickers, or ID in the car or dwelling (only if the car or house is unlocked or things visible from the outside)? Have you been told by the person or by someone that the person is in the military? Did you run the VIN of the vehicle to double-check the address you have for the person? If you are AWARE of any aliases for the person, did you run each name?

If you are otherwise on notice that a person may be in the military, be cautious. Servicemembers have rights that need to be respected and the US Department of Justice has been aggressive against towing companies, landlords, and others who take action against people, even though there were obvious indicators that the person was on active duty. Speak to your lawyer if you have any concerns.

Some settlement actions with the Department of Justice provide that the affidavit be executed no more than 2 days prior to seeking a default judgment. (See sample court order that settled one investigation).

You should have a checklist or training manual for your employees regarding SCRA compliance. For a sample and information related to the towing industry (which would have relevance to other industries and situations), see SCRA Compliance for the towing industry.

We are here to help you comply at www.ServicemembersCivilReliefAct.com.

Attorney Roy Kaufmann serves as the Director of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Centralized Verification Service, located in Washington, D.C. As a recognized authority on the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, Mr. Kaufmann has published hundreds of articles and hosted many webinars. His teachings help law firms and businesses to remain compliant with the SCRA rules and regulations so as to avoid costly fines.