Newly proposed legislation would allow service members and their families to move to a new duty station at different times while splitting their household goods shipment, giving the service member money for temporary lodging and letting the family receive a with-dependent housing allowance based on their current location, not the service member’s assigned duty station.
Military families often choose to split their moves to avoid disrupting a child’s school schedule or spouse’s job. Currently, service members and their families can do so without special permission stateside, but must ship all their goods at once, pay temporary lodging expenses out of pocket and receive basic allowance for housing (BAH) at the rate for the new duty station. If they are living in base housing, they could also be forced to move out since their service member no longer is stationed at that location. If they want to move to the new duty station ahead of their service member, they may not be able to apply for housing until the date on their military move orders. To split an overseas move, service members must request a deferred move for the family and pay some expenses out of pocket. Approval of the request is not guaranteed.
The Military Family Stability Act, proposed by Sen. Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a New York Democrat, would eliminate those extra costs and require the DoD to change PCS policies to allow families to stay behind or move ahead up to six months before or after their orders’ report dates.