Legal Assistance Services

Air Force Reserve: Active Duty

Benefit Fact Sheet

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Air Force Legal Assistance providers are available worldwide to advise Service members, Family members and other eligible clients on legal affairs in a timely and professional manner. Providers deliver preventive law information, assist with personal legal problems, and alleviate the burden of full payment for legal services.


Air Force Reserve Service members serving on active duty are generally eligible for free Legal Assistance during the duration of their duty. Following periods of federal active duty, they may be eligible for legal assistance relating to issues that arose from their active duty.

Benefit Highlights

Military lawyers, also known as Judge Advocates, are attorneys who have graduated from an accredited law school and are licensed to practice law by the highest court of a State or Federal court. Judge Advocates and DoD civilian attorneys assigned to assist eligible individuals with personal legal problems are known as Legal Assistance Attorneys. Legal Assistance Attorneys are located on nearly every JAG Corps insigniabase, ship and installation around the world and are available to assist Service members in the following areas:

  • Serving as advocate and counsel

  • Preparing and signing correspondence on behalf of an eligible client

  • Negotiating with another party or that party's attorney

  • Referring eligible persons to a private attorney (when necessary)

  • Drafting powers of attorney

  • Drafting wills and providing estate planning advice

  • Providing advice on contracts and leases

  • Providing notarizations

  • Advising on family law and domestic relations (divorce, separation, Family support, adoption, custody, paternity and name changes); however, legal assistance attorneys are not authorized to prepare or review separation agreements, divorce decrees, or related documents.

  • Providing tax preparation and electronic filing (e-filing) for Gold Star Families

  • Providing advice on landlord-tenant issues

  • Providing advice on immigration and naturalization issues

  • Providing advice on special education issues to Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) families

  • Drafting advance medical directives

  • Consumer law to include bankruptcy, consumer fraud, identify theft, illegal lending practices and vehicle leases.

If a Legal Assistance Attorney is unable to resolve the case or a specialized attorney is needed, the Legal Assistance Attorney will advise the client to seek out a civilian attorney who can handle the case. Additionally, if the client is financially eligible, the Legal Assistance Attorney may refer the Service member to a pro bono (free of charge) attorney.

While Legal Assistance Offices provide numerous services to Service members and their Families, there are a number of things that they are not able to do. These include:

  • Provide legal assistance to parties not eligible to receive such assistance

  • Provide legal assistance via a third party; the attorney must deal directly with the client, not a friend or relative of the person

  • Provide assistance or counsel regarding legal problems arising from the Service member's outside business or commercial interests

  • Provide assistance or counsel regarding legal problems arising from employment issues

  • Provide in-court representation for an individual (except in limited cases)

  • Give advice over the telephone (under normal circumstances)

  • Represent both parties in a dispute

At a small number of installations, the state courts have approved Legal Assistance Attorneys to appear in local courts. In such cases, a Legal Assistance Attorney may represent certain military members in civil court.

Additional Information

U.S. Air Force Legal Assistance Website:

For specific details of Air Force Legal Assistance, please visit Air Force Instruction 51-304:

DoD Instruction 1350.04, Legal Assistance Matters

Additional information on the location of the closest Legal office on an Air Force installation may be located on the Military Resource Locator Library on MyAirForceBenefits:

Or on the Legal Services Locator. In some cases, the closest Legal Assistance office might be operated by another military service. Call their office to determine

Document Review Date: 08 September 2023