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State and territorial laws are diverse. If your military defense lawyer is uncertain where you may reside, carry on a vocation, or go to school, he will likely (and justifiably) be very cautious when giving advice that an offense is not covered or the exact procedures to register other than “check with local authorities for registration requirements.”

If the sex offense is not listed on the enclosure to the sexual offender registration advice form, a State or territory may still require sex offender registration. Your court martial defense lawyer will likely not guarantee what a state law requires because some requirements are unpublished and the potential registrant must check with state authorities first. In United States v. Molina, 68 MJ 532 (C.G.C.C.A. 2009), the court explained the dangers of telling a client he would not have to register as a sex offender only to later discover a state had registration requirements that were not generally known despite counsel’s researching the issue.

We have found the following article helpful: Sex Offender Laws and the Uniform Code of Military Justice: A Primer, The Army Lawyer, August 2009, which our office can provide a copy of should you like to review it on your own.

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