Q: We sometimes have difficulty determining what constitutes active duty, and the definition in the SCRA and other laws are vague. Until recently, we relied on HUD Letter 2006-28, which referred to a website and fax and phone numbers to verify military service. Can you provide us with solid guidance on how we can determine active duty status?
A: The Department of Defense hosts the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) to assist lenders in determining if a particular borrower is currently on active military duty. The data center can be accessed at https://www.dmdc.osd.mil/appj/scra/ scraHome.do with the appropriate certificate. With the borrower’s name and Social Security number, lenders can use the DMDC to confirm the current military duty status of that individual. Because both foreclosure and repossession processes can extend over longer periods of time, banks are encouraged to incorporate into these procedures more than one assessment of the borrower’s service member status.