Compassionate Leave and Travel
If there is a requirement for a person serving overseas to return to the UK for compassionate reasons, for example if a close relative becomes very seriously ill (normally life threatening) or dies, then it is the role of the Joint Casualty and Compassionate Centre (JCCC) to investigate the circumstances and make a recommendation as to whether compassionate travel should be granted.
When a Service person is on operational duties overseas, any requests for them to be allowed home on compassionate grounds MUST go through the JCCC rather than the Unit.
To avoid delays, contact should be made with the JCCC first, contacting your loved one may lead to delay because they or their unit will then have to contact the JCCC in order for the appropriate investigations to be carried out.
When you telephone the JCCC you will be asked to provide the following information of the service person:
• Number, Rank and Name.
• Unit and Address of Service person.
• Name and Telephone Number of Doctor or Hospital (if applicable) who are treating the subject of the compassionate request.
• The details of the person very seriously ill (normally life threatening) or dead.
Note that Compassionate travel may be authorised for the following:
• Parents including step-parents, spouse or partner (including former relationships, if their condition affects the welfare of any children from that relationship).
• Children including stepchildren of current marriage or ‘entitled’ partnership, children outside marriage providing they are the child of the Serving person (not children by another relationship) and where the Serving person provides permanent financial support and/or the permanence of the relationship can be supported by the CO of a unit.
• Legal guardians or grandparents who have acted in loco parentis, which means the legal responsibility of a person to act in place of a parent and assume parental rights and duties for a minor, and where this can be shown to have been in effect for a significant period of time.
• For all other relatives a message only will be passed to the unit.
Compassionate leave may also be granted in the following circumstances:
• When the spouse or ‘entitled’ partner or child of a serving person is very seriously ill or has died. In the case of death, every endeavour will be made to enable the serving person to arrive in time for the funeral.
• When a Serving person’s presence is the only means of preventing the break up of his or her immediate family. Under these circumstances, a great deal of care should be taken and specialist assistance in assessing the need should be sought. For example, there may well be cases where the break up of the family is inevitable, has been an issue for some considerable time, or where the return of the individual to the family home will not contribute to the resolution of the problem.
• Where the care of young children can only be provided satisfactorily by the Serving person’s presence.
• When the death of a close relative is imminent. In these cases, every endeavour is to be made to enable the serving person to arrive before the death.
• When a close relative is very seriously ill, provided that the serving person will be of practical help and that there is no other appropriate relative who is available to help.
• The scope of JCCC support is normally limited to close relatives and either the JCCC or your Unit Welfare Officer can explain who these are.
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