Kaine, Klobuchar, Kennedy, Cornyn, Manchin Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Ease Relocation Burdens on Military Families

Support our Military Spouses Act would reduce confusion and ensure military spouses do not have to establish new legal residency after every military reassignment

 WASHINGTON- U.S. Senators Tim Kaine (D-VA), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), John Kennedy (R-LA), John Cornyn (R-TX), Joe Manchin (D-WV) introduced the bipartisan Support our Military Spouses Act today to ease the relocation process frequently required of military families. The bill will ensure that all spouses of active duty service members do not have to establish new legal residency every time they move for a military reassignment.

“Frequent moves can present challenges for military families who already sacrifice so much,” Kaine said. “This is the latest bipartisan piece of legislation that would help relieve some of that stress by giving military spouses the option to keep their legal residency after a move to help ease the transition for their families.”

“Military families give so much to our country and ask for so little in return,” Klobuchar said. “This legislation will help cut red tape and ease the burdens associated with the frequent moves military families must make for their service. It would make everything from voting to finding employment easier.”

“One of the toughest things for military families is the constant relocation for new assignments. They usually have to move every few years,” Kennedy said. “We can make that upheaval easier and remove a burden spouses of service members currently face by not forcing them to constantly change their legal residency. This will make everything from filing taxes to buying a car much simpler.”

“Military spouses make many sacrifices alongside the service of their loved ones, including the difficulties that come from continual relocation,” Cornyn said. “This legislation would help alleviate stress by making it easier for them to establish residency for employment and voter registration so they can continue to provide for their families and cast their ballot during elections.”

“Behind so many of our brave servicemembers are loving spouses who support them. The sacrifice military spouses make for this great country often go unnoticed and we owe it to them to do anything we can to make life a little easier,” Manchin said. “I am proud to be a part of this commonsense, bipartisan bill and look forward to its passage.”

The 2017 Blue Star Families Lifestyle Survey reported 72 percent of military families lived in their communities for two years or less, and a majority of families indicated they are experiencing high levels of stress associated with moving for the military. In 2009, the Military Spouses Residency Relief Act (MSRRA) gave military spouses the right to retain their state of legal residence after a military reassignment if the couple has established the same residence at the time of their marriage. The Support our Military Spouses Act will allow military spouses to use the same residence as their spouse after a military reassignment regardless of the couple’s residency at the time of the marriage. By allowing spouses to select and keep the same state of residency as their partner, the Support our Military Spouses Act will reduce confusion and ease transitions from year to year for these families.