Dorinda D. DeScherer on the Rights and Obligations of Returning Service Members

Dorinda D. DeScherer on the Rights and Obligations of Returning Service Members

Federal law guarantees reemployment as well as the restoration of certain tax-favored benefits, such as health care coverage and retirement plan contributions to returning service members.

When Johnny comes marching home again from military service, he may be marching straight to his former employers door asking for his old job back. And in most cases, the employer will have to accommodate that request--even if it means firing another employee. Federal law guarantees reemployment as well as the restoration of certain tax-favored benefits, such as health care coverage and retirement plan contributions to returning service members. Significantly, the law protects both employees who were called up and those who enlisted voluntarily. Moreover, unlike many other federal laws protecting employee rights, there are no exceptions for small employers: the law applies to all employers from the mega company to the one-employee shop owner.

Johnny's second stop in his march home may be right to your door for tax advice. He may have tax obligations to fulfill that were put on hold during his period of service as well as questions about upcoming tax transactions.

In this commentary, Ms. DeScherer takes a detailed look at the employment and tax rights and obligations of returning service members.

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