Service members enter into the military with a strict obligation to complete their enlistment. An honorable discharge can be granted in certain circumstances, but if your child and spouse are healthy, you won’t be granted a discharge to spend more time with the kids.
But, there are certain circumstances where you’ll be able to be discharged honorably.
Entering the military, you sign a contract with a specified number of years that you agree to serve. Most enlistments are 2 years in length, but they can expand up to 6 years in length. Completing your enlistment allows you to be discharged, but you’ll only be honorably discharged if you meet the following requirements:
- You exceed the required standards for performance and conduct
- You maintain a good to excellent rating
Any service member that is coming to his or her end of enlistment will receive an honorable discharge if this criteria is met.
You must be able to perform your duties to the utmost degree. When a service member cannot complete their enlistment due to a psychological impairment, they’ll be discharged in a non-voluntary manner.
In this case, you won’t have any real say as pertains to your discharge.
Physical or Medical Discharge
Any service member that has a debilitating illness, injury or other medical ailment may be discharged honorably. This is done at the administrative level, and the military must determine that it is now impossible to fulfill your duties and obligations sufficiently.
You will need to maintain a good to excellent rating for an honorable discharge under these circumstances.
In most cases, you’ll want to file for a dependency discharge in an attempt to be with your family. This is a discharge that is granted to a solider before enlistment has been completed. There are strict criteria for a dependency discharge, including:
- Your family needs immediate financial assistance
- Your family needs emotional or physical assistance
For example, if your son or daughter has an illness that requires care, you may file for a dependency discharge. However, there are rules and regulations that must be met for the discharge to be granted.
The military will need to determine the following:
- Your presence will improve your child’s situation
- No one else can provide the care or assistance your child needs
You’ll need to prove that you can effectively help maintain your child’s health at this time.
In the event that your spouse has become severely ill, you may also be granted a discharge. As a household member and a parent, you’ll need to prove that your spouse can no longer fulfill his or her parental duties to your child. If your spouse dies, you’ll be granted a discharge if there are no other persons that are able to care for your children.
For an honorable discharge to be granted in any circumstance, you’ll need to maintain a good to excellent rating during your enlistment.
In most circumstances, there must be a viable, substantial reason for a discharge of any kind to be granted.
The Micklin Law Group, LLC is a New Jersey law firm specializing in family law and estates. Attorney Brad Micklin was recently named to The National Advocates list of Top 100 attorneys from each state. To set up a consultation, call 973-562-0100.