THE LEGAL EAGLE
FAMILY MEMBER PRE-MOVEMENT CHECKLIST
INTRODUCTION: As a service to our legal assistance clients, we have prepared this handout with frequently asked questions on issues involving pre-movement checklists and information to use prior to deployment. It is, of course, very general in nature since no handout can answer your specific questions. We do ask, however, that you read over these questions and answers carefully in connection with your visit to our legal assistance attorneys so that you may have the fullest information available to help you with your family law problem. Comments, corrections and suggestions regarding this pamphlet should be sent to the address at the end of the last page.
This checklist should be reviewed periodically and ALWAYS prior to a TDY or deployment
1. Are all the immunizations for myself and my family members up-to-date?
2. Do I know where my medical and dental records are kept?
3. Do I know where these records for my family members are kept?
4. Do I know how to get medical assistance if it is needed?
5. Do I have one or more reliable sitters for absences or emergencies?
1. Will I have my money available to me on a continuing basis during my sponsor's absence?
2. Has my sponsor initiated an allotment to be sent to me or directly to the bank monthly?
3. Will the allotment provide me with enough money to buy all the necessities needed to maintain a household?
4. If we are planning to leave the installation area, have we been saving for the move? [Neither Army Emergency Relief nor American Red Cross is authorized to lend money for such a move.]
5. Do I know the address of banks where we have money?
6. Do I know the account numbers and types of accounts that we have?
7. Do I know the location of our bank books (checking and savings)?
8. Do we have a safe deposit box? Do I know where the key is?
9. Do I know where each of our credit cards is? Are their numbers logged and kept in a safe place? Do I know the company address for each so I can notify them immediately of any loss?
10. Am I prepared to take complete control over our checking accounts, know the balance at all times, and never write a check unless I am certain of sufficient funds in the bank?
11. Do I know how to change the address to which an allotment is mailed? [Contact your servicing finance office or personnel office for help.]
12. Do I know all payments that must be made-to whom (account numbers, addresses, phone numbers) and when for the following:
e. Trash Collection
f. Insurance (life, property, auto, etc.)
i. Credit Cards
j. Other debts
13. Do I know whom to contact if my allotment check does not arrive?
a. Give the check three or four days after normal arrival time; then,
b. Contact Army Community Service if check still has not arrived.
1. If the vehicle is financed, do I know the name and address of the loan company?
2. Do I have the title or know its location?
3. Do I have the vehicle's registration?
4. Do I have the vehicle's insurance policy?
5. Do I know the renewal date for the license plate?
6. Do I know when to renew the inspection sticker?
7. Am I insured to drive?
8. Do I have a valid car or truck state driver's license? When does it expire?
9. Is our car or truck in good operating condition and do I know where to go for repairs?
1O. Do I have a duplicate set of all keys?
11. Can I make emergency repairs on the car if the situation arises (such as overheating, flat tire, dead battery)?
12. If I am not licensed to drive, have I made arrangements to have transportation available?
1. Are my family's identification cards up-to-date and valid until after the sponsor's return?
2. Do I know where and how to obtain new identification cards?
3. Has my sponsor executed a general power of attorney so I can take necessary action on important family matters during his or her absence?
4. Has my sponsor executed a special power of attorney so that I can cash his or her monthly check (if the check will continue to be sent to my address)?
5. Do I know where the general/special powers of attorney are kept?
6. Do I have birth certificates for myself and my family?
7. Do I have a copy of our marriage certificate?
8. Do I have copies of any adoption papers? Do I know where they are kept?
9. Do I have a Social Security card?
10. Do I have copies of our federal and state tax records?
11. Do I know where all of our insurance policies are kept?
12. Do I know where any stocks, bonds or other securities that we own are kept?
13. Do I know where any deeds are kept?
14. Have I safeguarded all of our important papers?
15. Do my sponsor and I have up-to-date wills? Do I know where the originals are kept?
IMPORTANT DOCUMENT FILE
It is very important for the military family to keep copies of important documents and other valuable information in a safe place. It is equally important that the wife and husband jointly organize this file so that each knows how and where to find the documents when they are needed.
Your sponsor should have most of this information...PLEASE SIT DOWN WITH HIM OR HER AND GATHER THIS INFORMATION AND THESE DOCUMENTS. THE HOUR YOU SPEND GOING OVER THIS WILL SAVE YOU TIME LATER ON. KEEP THE FOLLOWING DOCUMENTS IN A SPECIAL CONTAINER THAT YOU CAN DEFINITELY FIND IMMEDIATELY. At a minimum, the following documents should be included:
1. Marriage certificate.
2. Birth Certificates for all family members.
3. Citizenship papers, if any.
4. Adoption papers, if any.
5. Passports, if any.
6. List of Social Security Numbers of family members.
7. Shot records (up-to-date) for all family members.
8. Powers of attorney, if any.
10. Insurance policies (both government and civilian)-with a list of companies, policy numbers, types of insurance coverage, addresses and phone numbers of agents or companies.
11. Vehicle titles, if any.
12. List of all members of immediate families with current addresses and phone numbers.
13. List of all credit cards and account numbers.
14. List of all bonds and stocks and where certificates are located.
15. Court orders relating to divorce, child support, custody, alimony or property division, if any.
16. Real estate documents-leases, deeds, mortgages and promissory notes, closing papers.
17. Copies of any sales or installment contracts and finance agreements.
18. List of bank accounts with types of accounts and account numbers.
19. Armed Forces' identification cards for all family members 10 years of age or older.
20. Nine (9) copies of your spouse's TDY and/or PCS orders. [If you must move by yourself, you will need extra copies of these orders. However, with these copies, you can have other made without cost to you by going to your sponsor's unit.]
21. Current addresses and telephone numbers of all members of immediate families of both you and your spouse. [Immediate family includes father, mother, children, brother(s), sister(s). You should have all other important telephone numbers you may need in case of emergency.]
22. A completed current copy of DD Form 1543, "Annual Legal Checkup," showing summary of the above information.
Q. IF I HAVE OTHER QUESTIONS, WHAT SHOULD I DO?
A. See a legal assistance attorney as soon as possible. Our legal assistance office stands ready, willing and able to help you in these matters. Be sure to bring along with you to the interview a copy of any documents or court papers that might be helpful to your attorney.
Location and hours of your Legal Assistance Office: ________________
Information on local agencies, offices and resources: ___________________
THE LEGAL EAGLE SERIES OF CLIENT HANDOUTS IS PREPARED BY MARK E. SULLIVAN, CHAIR OF THE MILITARY COMMITTEE, ABA FAMILY LAW SECTION AND AUTHOR OF THE MILITARY DIVORCE HANDBOOK (AM. BAR ASSN. 2006). COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS SHOULD BE SENT TO HIM AT: 2626 GLENWOOD AVENUE, RALEIGH, N.C. 27608 [919-832-8507]; E-MAIL— MARK.SULLIVAN@NCFAMILYLAW.COM
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