Command Sponsorship is not required for Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) status. Dependents on an accompanied tour with U.S. Forces personnel in Japan enjoy SOFA status without Command Sponsorship. However, without command sponsorship, the service member and dependents are not entitled to the benefits listed below:
- Overseas Housing Allowance (OHA) with dependent(s) rate
- Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) with dependent(s) rate
- Reside in on-base housing
- Environmental and Morale Leave (EML)
- Department of Defense Dependant School (DoDDS)
- Government transportation to sponsor’s next duty station
- Departure Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA)
- It is strongly discouraged that members bring family members to Japan at own expense prior to requesting and receiving preliminary command sponsorship approval.
There are three ways to get command sponsorship:
1. By member’s transferring command initiating a request for dependent entry approval and concurrent/non-concurrent travel, per OPNAVINST 1300.14 and COMNAVFORJAPANINST 4060.6 prior to member and dependents commencing travel to the overseas permanent duty station.
2. By member’s application for non-concurrent travel of dependents per Joint Federal Travel Regulations (JFTR) Vol. 1, and Diary Message Reporting Systems Users’ Manual (DMRSMAN) after member reports to the overseas PDS.
3. By member’s who acquire dependents during their tour of duty at the overseas PDS per the instruction.
Command Sponsorship Eligibility Requirements:
- Have sufficient contractual obligated service to complete the accompanied-by-dependent tour and have at least 12 months remaining on tour; whichever is later.
- Be E-4 or above. E-3 and below will only be assigned an accompanied overseas tour if unusual circumstances exist.
- Request a PRD extension, if needed, to complete the appropriate (normally 36 months) accompanied-by-dependent tour, plus have at least 12 months remaining on the current tour (or 24 months remaining for returning dependents who have previously left the country).
- Have all family members meet overseas suitability screening requirements.
- Ensure that all family members either possess Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) status, or are eligible for and have obtained permanent resident status in Japan.
- Any family member who is not eligible for TRICARE benefits, as defined by TRICARE Policy Manual 6010.47 Series, must possess proof of current health care insurance. In addition, the sponsor must sign a Page 13 stating that sponsor is responsible for any unpaid medical charges and that sponsor will provide proof of renewal of insurance on and annual bases to the Health Guidance Department at US Naval Hospital Okinawa, Japan.
- Copy of NAVPERS 1070/602, updated Record of Emergency Data.
- Copy of NAV COMPT 3072, Dependency Status Action, for secondary (dependents only).
- Copy of Administrative Remarks, NAVPERS 1070/613 for non TRICARE (eligible dependent only).
- Copy of proof of current healthcare insurance for non-TRICARE (eligible dependents).
- Copy of PRD extension request (NAVPERS 1306/7 of message.
- Copy of NAVPERS 1070/621, Agreement to Extend Enlistment, or NAVPERS 1070/622, Assignment to and Extension of active duty.
- Copy of NAVPERS 1300-16, Report of Suitability of or Overseas Assignment, on family members seeking command sponsorship.
- Copy of Authorization to Marry form he applicable area commander of designatedrepresentative as required.
- Copy of dependent’s passport showing the page with the individual’s picture an identifying information as well as the passport page that contains the most recent date of entry into Japan.
- Copy of NAVPERS 1740/6, Navy Family Care Plan Certificate.
- A statement incorporated in the request, signed by the servicemember, attesting the fact that the non-command sponsored family member is not residing in government quarters in violation of COMNAVFOR JAPAN 11101.12 Series.
- The Child Development Centers on Okinawa are offered through MCCS and Kadena FSS. For information regarding hours, locations and forms to fill out, visit the Child Development Centers page of the MCCS website. To find childcare through Kadena Force Support Squadron on Kadena, click on the link.
- If you prefer to find childcare off-base, please keep in mind that childcare in Japan is often expensive and difficult to find, especially due to language and cultural differences with our host country. Service members are not always able to find suitable or affordable childcare on the economy.
Most Child Development Centers in Japan have waiting lists ranging from one to several months. This situation may pose a personal problem to servicemembers who are single parents or servicemembers with children who are married to another servicemember. Counseling is required on these members prior to transfer to Japan.
All family entry approval granting authorities must ensure family entry approval messages for single parents of service members married to another service member with children contain the following statements:
***Family entry approval or command sponsorship is granted contengent upon the command's counseling of the member regarding the difficulties that may be anticipated in monetary and difficulties in cultural differences, including language barriers. Servicemembers must be readily available to begin work upon reporting for duty and also have current NAVPERS 1740 (Navy Care Plan Certificate) and NAVPERS 1740/7 (Navy Family Care Plan Arrangements) on file.***
Are you Command Sponsored already?
- Military members married to other military members—Children born in a military family are not command sponsored at birth. After the first child is command sponsored, any additional children born of that marriage shall be command sponsored at birth without submission of a request, provided the same parent is claming the first born and subsequent births.
- Children born when spouse is command sponsored—Children born to command sponsored depended spouses are command sponsored at birth.
- Children born to command sponsored dependent—Children born to command sponsored dependents that are not the spouse of the member are not eligible for command sponsorship unless they become legal dependents of the service member through separate action.
- Children born to single parent—Children born to a single military parent will be command sponsored as of the date of birth provided the member submits a request no later than 30 days after the child is born and the member meets all eligibility requirements for an accompanied tour. It is not required to have 12 months remaining on the current tour from the date the child is born. Requests submitted after 30 days will be effective the date of the determination and n no case prior to the member’s request provided the member is eligible in all respects.