In the Navy, you could be subject to non-judicial punishment (NJP) for minor offenses. Learning more about what NJP is and how it affects you is important as you continue your career as a seaman. If you are being subjected to NJP, contact a military defense attorney right away.
Non-Judicial Punishment in the Navy
Article 15 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) authorizes NJP as a deterrence method and to punish naval members for committing certain minor offenses. If you have been subjected to NJP, that does not mean you are convicted of a crime. NJP will not necessarily impact your service record.
The problem with NJP is that it allows the commanding officer that issued it to determine your guilt in the offense solely using his or her discretion. This means that it is not necessary for the officer to prove that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Your Rights Under NJP
Even if you have been placed under non-judicial punishment, you still have rights. These rights vary depending on the circumstances surrounding your case, but can include:
- You have the right to be informed that non-judicial proceedings are being considered against you.
- You have the right to know the offense that the officer accuses you of.
- You have the right to refuse the NJP, and the right to be notified that you are able to refuse.
- You have the right to demand that a trial take place through a court martial proceeding as opposed to NJP.
- You have the right to appeal.
Possible Non-Judicial Punishments
You could face serious consequences under NJP, but the severity of your punishment will depend on your case’s unique factors. However, forfeiture of a portion of your pay, confinement to quarters, restriction to the vessel, extra duties and correctional custody are all possibilities.
How We Can Help
Garrison Wood specializes in military defense law and knows how to work closely with the UCMJ. If you have been subjected to NJP or are going through non-judicial proceedings, we can help guide and defend you. Give us a call or schedule a free consultation online to learn more.
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