Sept. 16 (UPI) -- A bipartisan group of senators has introduced legislation that would allow service members to break residential or car leases more easily should they be relocated.
The bill is an update to the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which, among other things, allows service members to break leases without penalty if they are required to be relocated or deployed for longer than 90 days.
Under the existing law, service-members must give notice of breaking the lease in writing. The update seeks to allow that notice to be given electronically.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., a co-sponsor of the bill and member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, said the ability to electronically notify landlords and car leasing companies is particularly critical for service members because they may already be in another location when they need to make the notification.
"Our service members and their families make incredible sacrifices to keep our country safe, so we should take every opportunity to make it easier for them to manage major financial transactions like residential and car leases," she said Wednesday. "Our bipartisan bill is a sensible, overdue update to the law that ensures servicemembers can deliver valid, enforceable notice of lease terminations electronically."
Sen. Robert Portman, R-Ohio, said the update to the law is especially important right now because "the COVID-19 pandemic is pushing us to reconsider the ways we conduct transactions."
The group of senators, which included Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., John Boozman, R-Ark., Jon Tester, D-Mont., and Jack Reed, D-R.I., introduced the legislation Monday and it has been referred to the Senate Committee on Veterans Affairs for consideration.