THE BAYONET: CAMP LEE, VA., FRIDAY, MAY 10, 1918 his dependents by way of compensation or by way of insurance are absolutely independent of each other. The fact that a man receives insurance will not in any degree diminish the proper compensation due him. Neither can the fact that he has endeavored on his own part to provide against the future for himself and dependents by purchasing government insurance result in any stoppage or diminuition of any portion of his proper compensation. The soldier should appreciate that it is not only his duty, but that it is also his privilege to take the fullest advantage of the provisions of this law, and, if he does, he can rest secure in the belief that no matter what happens both he and his dependents will always be provided for, and comfortably provided for, in the future. Section VII. SOLDIERS' AND SAILORS' CIVIL RELIEF ACT. BY MAJOR C. V. CHURCH, Assistant Judge Advocate. Q. & A. 1. Purpose . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 2. Persons protected . . . . . . . . . . 2 3. Manner of protection . . . . . . . 3 4. Scope: (a) Miscellaneous claims . . . . 4 (b) Rent . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 (c) Taxes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 (d) Insurance premiums . . . . . 7 (c) Indorsers, sureties, etc . . 22 (f) Crimes and offenses . . . . . 23 5. Date of obligation . . . . . . . . . . 8 6. Time of relief: (a) Before suit has begun . . 9 (b) After suit has begun . . . 11 (c) After judgment . . . . . . . . . . 13 7. Procedure . . . . . . . . . 10, 12, 14 19-20 8. Discretion of the court . . . . . 15 9. Character of relief . . . . . . . . . . 16 10. Courts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17 11. Penalty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 12. Statute of limitations . . . . . . . 21 1.-Q. What is this act? A. It is an act of Congress approved March 8, 1918, for the protection of person in the military service in relation to claims, demands, suits and other civil proceedings against such persons. 2.-Q. What persons are protected by it? A. All officers and enlisted men in the military or naval service of the United States, including members of the nurse corps, field clerks, civilian clerks on duty with military forces abroad, and all other persons in the active military or naval services of the United States. 3.-Q. How does this law give protection? A. By postponing, staying or suspending claims, demands, suits and other civil proceedings against them. 4.-Q. What sort of claims or demands may be suspended? A. Simple debts, money due on promissory notes, on mortgages, on deeds of trust, on installment contracts and all obligations generally. 5.-Q. Is house rent included in this law? A. Yes. Rent of premises to the extent of $50 a month occupied chiefly for dwelling purposes by the wife, children or other dependents of soldiers, is covered by this act. 6.-Q. Are taxes affected by it? A. Yes. All taxes and assessments on property owned or occupied for dwelling or business purposes by a person in the military service, and falling due while they are in the service, are affected by the act. 7.-Q. Are insurance premiums covered by the law? A. Yes. Premiums on certain life insurance policies and dues arising out of membership in fraternal or beneficial associations, are protected by the law. 8.-Q. To be protected by this law, when must the obligations be incurred? A. As to insurance contracts, mortgages, deeds of trust, etc., the law suspends the enforcement of such obligations if incurred prior to the passage of the act. As to other claims, demands and suits generally, the law protects the soldier when the obligations are incurred at any time. 9.-Q. May this law be invoked by a soldier before a law suit has been begun against him. A. Yes. No eviction or distress proceedings may be instituted against premises occupied by a soldier's family when the agreed rent does not exceed $50 per month, except upon the special authority of the court. 10.-Q. How may this law be invoked before such suit is begun? A. (1) By notifying the landlord or other person threatening such suit of the fact that the tenant is in the military service, and calling attention to this law; and (2) by applying to the court on behalf of the solider, asking that any such proceedings be stayed or prevented. 11.-Q. May the law be invoked after a law suit has been begun? A. Yes. 12.-Q. How? A. By notifying the court that the defendant is in the military service, and asking that the suit be suspended during his service therein. 13.-Q. May the law be used after a judgment or decree has been rendered against a soldier? A. Yes. 14.-Q. How? A. By giving the same notice to the court as stated in the answer to the preceding question. The court may thereupon vacate the judgment or decree, or it may stay the execution or other proceedings on the judgment or decree. 15.-Q. When it has been shown that the debtor or defendant is in the military service, is the court bound to suspend the proceedings or stay the execution? A. No. The matter is left with the discretion of the court. If it should appear that a soldier is well able to meet his obligations, or for any other reason he should not be protected by this law, the court may refuse to suspend or postpone the proceedings against him. It is not the intention of the law to enable soldiers with independent means, to avoid paying their debts or meeting their obligations merely because they are in the military service. 16.-Q. Do the provisions of this law cancel or wipe out a debt claim or other obligation against a soldier? A. No. The law merely authorizes the suspension of any suit or other proceedings against a soldier. 17.-Q. Do the provisions of this law apply to State courts or to Federal courts? A. The provisions of this law apply to all United States courts, all State and Territorial courts and all other civil courts in the country. 18.-Q. Is there any penalty for the violation of this law? A. Yes. If any person shall institute eviction proceedings for the possession of rented property, or shall institute proceedings for the possession of property that is being bought under and installment contract, or shall institute any other suit or action, with knowledge that the defendant is in the military service, contrary to the provisions of this act, he may be punished by imprisonment not to exceed one year, or by fine not to exceed $1,000, or both. 19.-Q. What should a soldier do who is threatened with a suit, eviction, execution, foreclosure or other proceedings against him or his property. A. He may take action to protect his rights under this law as explained above; or he may apply to the office of the division judge-advocate for advice and assistance. Such consultation is treated confidentially. 20.-Q. What should a soldier do if his insurance premium comes due? A. He should apply to the War Risk Insurance Bureau, which has authority to send the proper notice to the insurance company of the fact that he is in the military service. 21.-Q. Suppose a soldier has a claim or demand or other cause of action against another, does this law affect the running of the statute or limitation against his claim or cause of action? A. Yes. This law suspends the running of the statute of limitation against his claim or cause of action? A. Yes. This law suspends the running of the statute of limitations against him by providing that the period of his military service shall not be included in computing the period of limitation for the bringing of any action by or against any person in the military service, whether such cause of action accrued before or during his military service. 22.-Q. Suppose another person has indorsed the promissory note of a soldier, does this law protect that other person? A. Yes. The law affords the same protection to an accommodation indorser, a guarantor, or a surety of any person in the military service, as it affords such soldier himself. 23.-Q. Does this law apply to criminal actions against soldiers? A. No. This law applies to claims, demands, suits or actions of a civil nature only. It does not protect soldiers in the commission of any felony, crime, misdemeanor, or for the violation of any city ordinance or police regulation. The sole purpose of the law is to protect persons in the military service, to prevent prejudice by injury to their civil rights during their term of service, and to enable them to devote their entire energy to the military needs of the nation.