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AWOL Failure To Report For Duty

Failure to Report for Duty Military Lawyer

Worldwide AWOL & Desertion Attorney

Have you been accused of failing to report for duty? Depending on your charges and the length of your alleged absence, if you are convicted, you may face anything from fines to punitive discharge and a federal conviction. Don't face these allegations alone or with an inexperienced lawyer. Turn to a former Marine military judge with more than 30 years of legal experience.

Failure to report to military duty defense lawyer Patrick J. McLain offers aggressive defense to servicemen and servicewomen accused of military offenses. He is a former USMC defense attorney, court-martial judge and federal prosecutor who understands military offenses from all sides. 

Contact Attorney Patrick J. McLain today - His experience, coupled with his dedication to members of the military, makes him a strong choice to protect your future.

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We defend people deployed nationally or stationed overseas globally.

Absence Without Official Leave (AWOL)

Under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), any member of the armed forces can be punished for failure to report for duty if prosecutors can show that he or she, without authority:

  • Failed to go to his or her appointed place of duty at the time prescribed;
  • Went from his or her appointed place of duty; or
  • Absented himself/herself or remains absent from the unit, organization or required place of duty at which he or she is required to be at the time prescribed.

The military uses many different titles for these offenses, including:

  • Absence without official leave (AWOL)/Unauthorized absence (UA): These are synonyms for failure to report for duty and include temporary or prolonged absences, first offenses or repeat offenses
  • Missing movement: Missing movement is alleged failure to arrive at the time to deploy (with an Army unit, Navy ship, Air Force aircraft, etc.)
  • Desertion: If the alleged absence lasted for more than 30 days, prosecutors may attach the label “deserter” to you and issue a federal warrant for your arrest

After 30 days' absence without official leave, a member of the armed forces can be charged with the federal crime of desertion and risk dishonorable discharge and jail time. If a family member or loved one is in the service and has gone AWOL, it is extremely important to call an independent military lawyer immediately.

Patrick J. McLain will discuss the legal options in a completely confidential consultation.

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You Need a Civilian Military Lawyer


  • Former Federal Prosecutor & Military Judge
  • Over 3,500 Cases Successfully Handled
  • Our Firm is Top-Rated & Award-Winning
  • Over Two Decades in the U.S. Marine Corps

A Strong Defense From a Compassionate Military Lawyer

Prosecutors must show that you knew of the time and place where you had to be and that you did not have permission to leave or authority for your absence. If they cannot prove these elements, they cannot convict you. Even if they can prove that you intentionally did not report for duty, there may be ways to minimize your potential sentence or avoid a criminal record altogether.

Patrick McLain can represent you in Nonjudicial Punishment (NJP) hearings, courts martial or federal courts.

Call (888) 606-3385 for an initial consultation.


    "Thanks to him I am now able to get on with my life."

    It took some time to make it happen, but it did just like Patrick said, he is a hard charging guy that can help you get what you deserve, Thanks to him I am now able to get on with my life.

    - Chip
    "I won my military case due to his diligence, knowledge and experience in military law."

    I cannot recommend Patrick highly enough. I won my military case due to his diligence, knowledge and experience in military law. Had I proceeded on my own, I would have lost, for the process was simply too complex. When working with Patrick, there was never a time when I felt left in the dark on my case, nor a time when his assessments and instructions were unclear. Should you be in any difficult circumstance, Patrick will work his tail off for you and keep you clearly informed on the status of your case. Again, I highly recommend the services of Patrick McLain.

    - Dan C.
    "He is a hard worker and will fight for you the moment you choose him to be on your team!"

    My husband hired Patrick for his summary court martial and Patrick and his team were there every step of the way. They communicated everything they needed and were even there when either me or my husband had any questions. He is a hard worker and will fight for you the moment you choose him to be on your team!

    - Angela
    "Amazing strength and integrity with the combination of experience, insight, and knowledge of military law."

    I have found my lawyer Patrick McLain, to be honest, right to the point, consistently giving me realistic outcomes through the whole process of my case. He's definitely no nonsense, cut to the chase. As a client…I've never been left hanging; he makes sure all my correspondence is returned. He's got amazing strength and integrity with the combination of experience, insight, and knowledge of military law. He stands behind his words and expects the same in return. I say my blessings every day for him taking my case. With him as my attorney, I've achieved best possible outcomes.

    - Gina F.
    "Great lawyer and better person"
    Mr. McLain helped me through the most difficult experience in my life. As a Marine Officer facing an upcoming board of inquiry for conduct issues, I was fearful of losing a career that I deeply cherished. Mr. McLain not only gave me perfect legal advice throughout the process, but also reached out many times to see how I was doing on a personal level. A great lawyer and better person, Mr. McLain helped me become successful in my board of inquiry and keep moving forward in my career. His knowledge and experience are top notch, and his military experience and personal qualities make him the best lawyer out there to defend military personnel. Would highly recommend to anyone.
    - Jonathan
    "Always made me feel as though I was his most important client, and was knowledgeable on all subjects."

    He completely cared, took my case personally, always made me feel as though I was his most important client, and was knowledgeable on all subjects. I give him the highest rating possible and totally recommend him to anyone who is 

    - Mike
    "I was entirely impressed with mclain’s work on my case."

    I called McLain when the military charged me with some B.S., McLain immediately jumped into action and made things happen in my favor. Don't do it alone … your military chain of command will try to make you think that your cooperation will help you, it will NOT. I was entirely impressed with McLain's work on my 

    - Chris C.
    "Amazing lawyer who fights for you!"
    A tremendous lawyer in a time of need. After being accused of conduct unbecoming an officer for personal conduct while off duty, I hired Mr. McLain to help me through the process. He diligently worked behind the scenes to make sure my voice was being heard. Despite my inability to listen to his direction early on, Mr. Mclain was patient and continued to fight on my behalf. Mr. McLain helped me win at a board of inquiry with no other disciplinary action. A sincere man, who is dedicated to his clients. Would strongly recommend and is a great asset to military clients everywhere.
    - Former Client
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