EFMP Policy Changes to Stabilize Families – Military Families with Special Needs

As all parents of special needs children know, a PCS is even more complicated when dealing with continuity of care (or lack thereof).  We also know that a PCS is part of the military life and we cannot put it off permanently.  However, recent changes in military policy for families with special medical or education needs aim to help out a bit.

The policy changes, released 8/22/13,
clarify the guidelines for the stabilization process involving EFMP families.

Military Families with Special Needs

The message states “The Army is committed to the health, safety and well-being of its Soldiers and their Family members with special needs. Army policy allows for military Families with special needs to be stabilized for four years so medical or education services, which cannot be immediately replicated elsewhere, are not disrupted. The stabilization for the exceptional Family member does NOT apply to the Soldier.

Let’s Break it Down:

  • Soldiers with exceptional Family members may still be required to travel on TDY for  combat or operational deployments, training exercises, for personnel manager or professional development 
  • Four-year stabilization period starts on the day the Family member began receiving the required services

How Do YOU Qualify?

One or more of these criteria MUST be met to establish eligibility for stabilization

  1. A permanent change of station move (PCS) would disrupt access to necessary medical or education services that would place the exceptional Family member’s health, safety or development in jeopardy.
  2. The Family member has a diagnosis that requires extensive support from TRICARE and/or state and local resources that would be difficult to replicate or reacquire in a timely manner.
  3. The Family has multiple exceptional Family members receiving a combination of Tricare, state and local services that would be difficult to replicate or reacquire in a timely manner.

Steps to Qualify?

  • Soldiers must complete a Department of the Army form 4187
  • Solider must submit the form routed through the chain of command to request stabilization.

For more information on the stabilization process please contact your local EFMP office.


Raven Green
Raven is a military spouse and mom of two. She is a freelance writer and advocates for special needs military families. Her oldest is diagnosed with ADHD, SPD, speech & language delays, adjustment disorder and is on the Autism Spectrum. Raven is the author and editor of Ms. MommyHH6, a contributor at Mom-Spot and has been featured on NextGen MilSpouse, Homefront United, Military OneSource and more. She was named to the Top 25 Military Mom Blogs of 2012 by Circle of Moms and 2013 Fort Lee Military Spouse of the Year by Military Spouse Magazine. She resides in Virginia where she is a wife, mom, blogger, writer and advocate. You can reach Raven through Facebook, Twitter or email.
Raven Green
Raven Green

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