UNIFORM LAW COMMISSION
111 N. Wabash Ave., Suite 1010 , Chicago , IL 60602
312-450-6600, www.nccusl.org

Contact: Katie Robinson, ULC Communications Officer, 312-450-6616

For Immediate Release:

 

NATIONAL LAW GROUP BEGINS WORK ON NEW ACT WHICH ADDRESSES
THE PROBLEMS FACED BY MILITARY PERSONNEL INVOLVED IN CUSTODY AND VISITATION DISPUTES

UGA Law Professor Paul M. Kurtz Appointed Chair of Drafting Committee

September 9, 2009 - In response to the complex problems confronting military personnel involved in custody and visitation disputes, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) has recently appointed a drafting committee to prepare an act providing standards and procedures for resolving visitation and custody issues affecting military personnel and their families. The drafting committee on the Visitation and Custody Issues Affecting Military Personnel and their Families Act will be chaired by Prof. Paul M. Kurtz, Associate Dean and J. Alton Hosch Professor of Law at the University of Georgia School of Law. Dean Kurtz has served as a Commissioner representing Georgia since 2001 and, prior to that, served as co-Reporter for the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act, which has been adopted in each of the 50 states.

With the increased activity of our armed forces, there is a need for a state statute that will protect the rights of service members and their families. Uniformity is very important since military personnel are shipped to various bases around the country and overseas. Some of the issues that the drafting committee will address include whether a service member may delegate visitation or custody rights to another during the time when they are deployed, or whether courts can be prevented from modifying or changing an existing order or issuing a new order while the service member is deployed.

The drafting committee is expected to hold its first meeting in the spring of 2010. All drafts will be posted on the ULC website at www.nccusl.org, and will be available for public review and comment. The process for the development of a uniform law generally takes two to three years. Once the ULC approves a uniform act, it is then sent to the states for their consideration.

The Uniform Law Commission is in its 118 th year; it is comprised of more than 300 practicing lawyers, government lawyers, judges, law professors, and lawyer-legislators from every state as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Uniform law commissioners are appointed by their states to draft and promote enactment of uniform laws that are designed to solve problems common to all the states.

The ULC is the oldest state governmental association and is the source of more than 250 uniform acts seeking state law uniformity, among them such bulwarks of state statutory law as the Uniform Commercial Code, the Uniform Probate Code, the Uniform Partnership Act, and the Uniform Anatomical Gift Act. After receiving the ULC's seal of approval, a uniform act is officially promulgated for consideration by the states, and legislatures are urged to adopt it.

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