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H.R. 1010 (ih) To provide emergency relief to small businesses affected by significant increases in the prices of heating oil, natural gas, propane, and kerosene, and for other purposes. [Introduced in House] ...


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108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 100

To restate, clarify, and revise the Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief 
                              Act of 1940.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            January 7, 2003

  Mr. Smith of New Jersey (for himself and Mr. Evans) introduced the 
   following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Veterans' 
                                Affairs

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To restate, clarify, and revise the Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief 
                              Act of 1940.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. RESTATEMENT OF ACT.

    The Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief Act of 1940 (50 U.S.C. App. 
501 et seq.) is amended to read as follows:

``SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

    ``(a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the `Servicemembers 
Civil Relief Act'.
    ``(b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents of this Act is as 
follows:

``Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.
``Sec. 2. Purpose.
                     ``TITLE I--GENERAL PROVISIONS

``Sec. 101. Definitions.
``Sec. 102. Jurisdiction and applicability of Act.
``Sec. 103. Protection of persons secondarily liable.
``Sec. 104. Extension of protections to citizens serving with allied 
                            forces.
``Sec. 105. Notification of benefits.
``Sec. 106. Extension of rights and protections to Reserves ordered to 
                            report for military service and to persons 
                            ordered to report for induction.
``Sec. 107. Waiver of rights pursuant to written agreement.
``Sec. 108. Exercise of rights under Act not to affect certain future 
                            financial transactions.
``Sec. 109. Legal representatives.
                       ``TITLE II--GENERAL RELIEF

``Sec. 201. Protection of servicemembers against default judgments.
``Sec. 202. Stay of proceedings when servicemember defendant has 
                            notice.
``Sec. 203. Fines and penalties under contracts.
``Sec. 204. Stay or vacation of execution of judgments, attachments, 
                            and garnishments.
``Sec. 205. Duration and term of stays; codefendants not in service.
``Sec. 206. Statute of limitations.
``Sec. 207. Maximum rate of interest on debts incurred before military 
                            service.
``TITLE III--RENT, INSTALLMENT CONTRACTS, MORTGAGES, LIENS, ASSIGNMENT, 
                                LEASES.

``Sec. 301. Evictions and distress.
``Sec. 302. Protection under installment contracts for purchase or 
                            lease.
``Sec. 303. Mortgages and trust deeds.
``Sec. 304. Settlement of stayed cases relating to personal property.
``Sec. 305. Termination of leases by lessees.
``Sec. 306. Protection of life insurance policy.
``Sec. 307. Enforcement of storage liens.
``Sec. 308. Extension of protections to dependents.
                         ``TITLE IV--INSURANCE

``Sec. 401. Definitions.
``Sec. 402. Insurance rights and protections.
``Sec. 403. Application for insurance protection.
``Sec. 404. Policies entitled to protection and lapse of policies.
``Sec. 405. Policy restrictions.
``Sec. 406. Deduction of unpaid premiums.
``Sec. 407. Premiums and interest guaranteed by United States.
``Sec. 408. Regulations.
``Sec. 409. Review of findings of fact and conclusions of law.
                   ``TITLE V--TAXES AND PUBLIC LANDS

``Sec. 501. Taxes respecting personal property, money, credits, and 
                            real property.
``Sec. 502. Rights in public lands.
``Sec. 503. Desert-land entries.
``Sec. 504. Mining claims.
``Sec. 505. Mineral permits and leases.
``Sec. 506. Perfection or defense of rights.
``Sec. 507. Distribution of information concerning benefits of title.
``Sec. 508. Land rights of servicemembers.
``Sec. 509. Regulations.
``Sec. 510. Income taxes.
``Sec. 511. Residence for tax purposes.
                  ``TITLE VI--ADMINISTRATIVE REMEDIES

``Sec. 601. Inappropriate use of Act.
``Sec. 602. Certificates of service; persons reported missing.
``Sec. 603. Interlocutory orders.
                      ``TITLE VII--FURTHER RELIEF

``Sec. 701. Anticipatory relief.
``Sec. 702. Power of attorney.
``Sec. 703. Professional liability protection.
``Sec. 704. Health insurance reinstatement.
``Sec. 705. Guarantee of residency for military personnel.

``SEC. 2. PURPOSE.

    ``The purposes of this Act are--
            ``(1) to provide for, strengthen, and expedite the national 
        defense through protection extended by this Act to 
        servicemembers of the United States to enable such persons to 
        devote their entire energy to the defense needs of the Nation; 
        and
            ``(2) to provide for the temporary suspension of judicial 
        and administrative proceedings and transactions that may 
        adversely affect the civil rights of servicemembers during 
        their military service.

                     ``TITLE I--GENERAL PROVISIONS

``SEC. 101. DEFINITIONS.

    ``For the purposes of this Act:
            ``(1) Servicemember.--The term `servicemember' means a 
        member of the uniformed services, as that term is defined in 
        section 101(a)(5) of title 10, United States Code.
            ``(2) Military service.--
                    ``(A) With respect to a member of the Army, Navy, 
                Air Force, Marine Corps, or Coast Guard, the term 
                `military service' means active duty, as that term is 
                defined in section 101(d)(1) of title 10, United States 
                Code.
                    ``(B) Active service of commissioned officers of 
                the Public Health Service or National Oceanic and 
                Atmospheric Administration shall be deemed to be 
                `military service' for the purposes of this Act.
            ``(3) Period of military service.--The term `period of 
        military service' means the period beginning on the date on 
        which a servicemember enters military service and ending on the 
        date on which the  servicemember is released from military 
service or dies while in military service.
            ``(4) Dependent.--The term `dependent', with respect to a 
        servicemember, means--
                    ``(A) the servicemember's spouse;
                    ``(B) the servicemember's child (as defined in 
                section 101(4) of title 38, United States Code); or
                    ``(C) an individual for whom the servicemember 
                provided more than one-half of the individual's support 
                for 180 days immediately preceding an application for 
                relief under this Act.
            ``(5) Court.--The term `court' means a court or an 
        administrative agency of the United States or of any State 
        (including any political subdivision of a State), whether or 
        not a court or administrative agency of record.
            ``(6) State.--The term `State' includes--
                    ``(A) a commonwealth, territory, or possession of 
                the United States; and
                    ``(B) the District of Columbia.
            ``(7) Secretary concerned.--The term `Secretary 
        concerned'--
                    ``(A) with respect to a member of the armed forces, 
                has the meaning given that term in section 101(a)(9) of 
                title 10, United States Code;
                    ``(B) with respect to a commissioned officer of the 
                Public Health Service, means the Secretary of Health 
                and Human Services; and
                    ``(C) with respect to a commissioned officer of the 
                National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, means 
                the Secretary of Commerce.

``SEC. 102. JURISDICTION AND APPLICABILITY OF ACT.

    ``(a) Jurisdiction.--This Act applies to--
            ``(1) the United States;
            ``(2) each of the States, including the political 
        subdivisions thereof; and
            ``(3) all territory subject to the jurisdiction of the 
        United States.
    ``(b) Applicability to Proceedings.--This Act applies to any 
judicial or administrative proceeding commenced in any court or agency 
in any jurisdiction subject to this Act. This Act does not apply to 
criminal proceedings.
    ``(c) Court in Which Application May Be Made.--When under this Act 
any application is required to be made to a court in which no 
proceeding has already been commenced with respect to the matter, such 
application may be made to any court which would otherwise have 
jurisdiction over the matter.

``SEC. 103. PROTECTION OF PERSONS SECONDARILY LIABLE.

    ``(a) Extension of Protection When Actions Stayed, Postponed, or 
Suspended.--Whenever pursuant to this Act a court stays, postpones, or 
suspends (1) the enforcement of an obligation or liability, (2) the 
prosecution of a suit or proceeding, (3) the entry or enforcement of an 
order, writ, judgment, or decree, or (4) the performance of any other 
act, the court may likewise grant such a stay, postponement, or 
suspension to a surety, guarantor, endorser, accommodation maker, 
comaker, or other person who is or may be primarily or secondarily 
subject to the obligation or liability the performance or enforcement 
of which is stayed, postponed, or suspended.
    ``(b) Vacation or Set-Aside of Judgments.--When a judgment or 
decree is vacated or set aside, in whole or in part, pursuant to this 
Act, the court may also set aside or vacate, as the case may be, the 
judgment or decree as to a surety, guarantor, endorser, accommodation 
maker, comaker, or other person who is or may be primarily or 
secondarily liable on the contract or liability for the enforcement of 
the judgment or decree.
    ``(c) Bail Bond Not To Be Enforced During Period of Military 
Service.--A court may not enforce a bail bond during the period of 
military service of the principal on the bond when military service 
prevents the surety from obtaining the attendance of the principal. The 
court may discharge the surety and exonerate the bail, in accordance 
with principles of equity and justice, during or after the period of 
military service of the principal.
    ``(d) Waiver of Rights.--
            ``(1) Waivers not precluded.--This Act does not prevent a 
        waiver in writing by a surety, guarantor, endorser, 
        accommodation maker, comaker, or other person (whether 
        primarily or secondarily liable on an obligation or liability) 
        of the protections provided under subsections (a) and (b). Any 
        such waiver is effective only if it is executed as an 
        instrument separate from the obligation or liability with 
        respect to which it applies.
            ``(2) Waiver invalidated upon entrance to military 
        service.--If a waiver under paragraph (1) is executed by an 
        individual who after the execution of the waiver enters 
        military service, or by a dependent of an individual who after 
        the execution of the waiver enters military service, the waiver 
        is not valid after the beginning of the period of such military 
        service unless the waiver was executed by such individual or 
        dependent during the period specified in section 106.

``SEC. 104. EXTENSION OF PROTECTIONS TO CITIZENS SERVING WITH ALLIED 
              FORCES.

    ``A citizen of the United States who is serving with the forces of 
a nation with which the United States is allied in the prosecution of a 
war or military action is entitled to the relief and protections 
provided under this Act if that service with the allied force is 
similar to military service as defined in this Act. The relief and 
protections provided to such citizen shall terminate on the date of 
discharge or release from such service.

``SEC. 105. NOTIFICATION OF BENEFITS.

    ``The Secretary concerned shall ensure that notice of the benefits 
accorded by this Act is provided in writing to persons in military 
service and to persons entering military service.

``SEC. 106. EXTENSION OF RIGHTS AND PROTECTIONS TO RESERVES ORDERED TO 
              REPORT FOR MILITARY SERVICE AND TO PERSONS ORDERED TO 
              REPORT FOR INDUCTION.

    ``(a) Reserves Ordered To Report for Military Service.--A member of 
a reserve component who is ordered to report for military service is 
entitled to the rights and protections of this title and titles II and 
III during the period beginning on the date of the member's receipt of 
the order and ending on the date on which the member reports for 
military service (or, if the order is revoked before the member so 
reports, or the date on which the order is revoked).
    ``(b) Persons Ordered To Report for Induction.--A person who has 
been ordered to report for induction under the Military Selective 
Service Act (50 U.S.C. App. 451 et seq.) is entitled to the rights and 
protections provided a servicemember under this title and titles II and 
III during the period beginning on the date of receipt of the order for 
induction and ending on the date on which the person reports for 
induction (or, if the order to report for induction is revoked before 
the date on which the person reports for induction, on the date on 
which the order is revoked).

``SEC. 107. WAIVER OF RIGHTS PURSUANT TO WRITTEN AGREEMENT.

    ``(a) In General.--A servicemember may waive any of the rights and 
protections provided by this Act. In the case of a waiver that permits 
an action described in subsection (b), the waiver is effective only if 
made pursuant to a written agreement of the parties that is executed 

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