There are a number of Army regulations that govern the granting of leaves and passes to Soldiers. These regulations must be followed by Soldiers in order to maintain their safety and adherence to Army rules. Those who don’t follow these rules can be subject to UCMJ action. Furthermore, passes may not be granted to Soldiers who have already used their leave or are overdue.
As a soldier, you should check your leave balance often and request time off for major events. For example, a soldier may request to take leave from duty for a scouting event if he is a member of the Boy Scouts or the Girl Scouts. As a soldier, you are entitled to 30 days of paid leave per year.
A soldier will not be allowed to leave his place of commuting prior to the start of a leave. In addition, he should be approved for leave before taking a car or plane ride that requires more than 250 miles. All leaves under 30 days must be signed by a company commander. This includes transition and PCS leaves. While a service member may request leave at any time, the command will review and approve it based on a number of different factors. Some commands will also specify a specific time when all members may take leave at once.
Army Regulation 600-8-10 governs the process for taking leave. It sets the standard for leave administration and provides guidelines for uniformity with other military services. The Army has recently improved the Army’s Form 31 (Request and Authority for Leave) and the Leave Log. The forms were last updated in 1993, but the regulations have changed a lot since then.
A Service Member can be granted a two-day leave for exceptional circumstances during his duty week. He can also be granted a Wednesday leave to accompany his children to a school physical. Another important distinction between leaves and passes is that a weekend leave does not count toward the 30-day limit. An Army Member can take a 3-day leave if he wants to.
Army regulation regarding leaves and passes states that a Soldier must be physically present at a duty site while he is on a pass. A leave and a special pass cannot be included on the same DA Form 31. Additionally, the length of a special pass depends on the local command policy. For example, a special pass period is four days during the Thanksgiving or Christmas holidays.
A Soldier may take a transition-related non-chargeable leave if he is transitioning from one duty assignment to another. This leave is often extended to the next year if he has not taken it the year before. However, a Soldier may lose the right to take leave if he does not use it within one year.