NDAA Will Provide Consistency in the Application of State Laws Regarding Custody
The FY 2015 National Defense Authorization Act (“NDAA”) was recently signed into law by President Obama. This legislation provides a uniform national standard that prohibits state courts from using past, current, or future deployment against service members when making child custody determinations.
The intent behind the passage of a uniform national standard is to provide consistency in the application of state laws regarding custody decisions as it relates to military parents facing a deployment. According to Rep. Mike Turner, R-Ohio, the sponsor of the custody provisions in the NDAA, this legislation “ensures service members will not lose custody of their children because they have served or might deploy as part of their military service.”
The provisions regarding child custody issues contained in the NDAA amend the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act and will help prevent courts from permanently altering custody orders during a parent’s deployment. Additionally, the NDAA will require pre-deployment custody to be reinstated unless it is not in the best interest of the child.