Servicemembers Civil Relief Act Overview

Servicemembers who are called into active duty, are deployed, or are entering the military; most likely have major concerns beyond paying bills on time and maintaining a good credit history. The Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA), which expanded the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Civil Relief Act, helps servicemembers retain good credit and eliminate financial stress while serving in the military.

The SCRA can help with a variety of financial concerns, such as:

Housing and automobile obligations

  • Servicemembers and their families are protected from being evicted for nonpayment of rents (up to a specified level that is annually adjusted for inflation).
  • Permits servicemembers who have been permanently or temporarily relocated to a new location to end a housing lease.
  • Allows for servicemembers to end an automobile lease under certain conditions.

Debt obligations

  • A limit of an interest rate of six percent (on credit incurred prior to military service only) can accrue on debt obligations while a service member is on active duty. After the service member retires or otherwise leaves active duty, any interest that accrued over the six percent cap must be forgiven. 

Lawsuits and trial obligations

  • Servicemembers can request a stay for any civil lawsuit (does not apply to criminal lawsuits) against them if their active duty status prevents them from being able to appear in court. 

Tax obligations

  • Allows a servicemember to retain their state residency for tax purposes, even if they are relocated to another state.

The SCRA covers members of the U.S. Military who are on active duty, as well as those reservists and National Guard members who have been called to active duty. 

Jesse Campbell photo.

Jesse Campbell is the Content Manager at MMI, with over ten years of experience creating valuable educational materials that help families through everyday and extraordinary financial challenges.

  • Better Business Bureau A+ rating Better Business Bureau
    MMI is proud to have achieved an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB), a nonprofit organization focused on promoting and improving marketplace trust. The BBB investigates charges of fraud against both consumers and businesses, sets standards for truthfulness in advertising, and evaluates the trustworthiness of businesses and charities, providing a score from A+ (highest) to F (lowest).
  • Financial Counseling Association of America Financial Counseling Association of America
    MMI is a proud member of the Financial Counseling Association of America (FCAA), a national association representing financial counseling companies that provide consumer credit counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling, bankruptcy counseling, debt management, and various financial education services.
  • Trustpilot Trustpilot
    MMI is rated as “Excellent” (4.9/5) by reviewers on Trustpilot, a global, online consumer review platform dedicated to openness and transparency. Since 2007, Trustpilot has received over 116 million customer reviews for nearly 500,000 different websites and businesses. See what others are saying about the work we do.
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development - Equal Housing Opportunity Department of Housing and Urban Development
    MMI is certified by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to provide consumer housing counseling. The mission of HUD is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. HUD provides support services directly and through approved, local agencies like MMI.
  • Council on Accreditation Council On Accreditation
    MMI is proudly accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA), an international, independent, nonprofit, human service accrediting organization. COA’s thorough, peer-reviewed accreditation process is designed to ensure that organizations like MMI are providing the highest standard of service and support for clients and employees alike.
  • National Foundation for Credit Counseling National Foundation for Credit Counseling
    MMI is a longstanding member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®), the nation’s largest nonprofit financial counseling organization. Founded in 1951, the NFCC’s mission is to promote financially responsible behavior and help member organizations like MMI deliver the highest-quality financial education and counseling services.