Must ReadHow Do I Get My Discharge Papers From The...

How Do I Get My Discharge Papers From The Army


Is A Dd214 The Same As Discharge Papers

How And Why Can A Military Discharge Be Upgraded

The DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, generally referred to as a DD 214, is a document of the United States Department of Defense, issued upon a military service members retirement, separation, or discharge from active duty in the Armed Forces of the United States (i.e. U.S. Army.

Where Can I Find My Vfw Discharge Papers

VFW applications include a copy of the discharge papers form DD-214. A local post of the association is more likely to have applications and other records than the national headquarters. Look in the telephone book for phone numbers or the Internet for address directories.

If the Veteran was discharged more than 62 years ago, you can order a copy of their military records. The National Archives opens all records to the public 62 years after discharge. If the Veteran was discharged less than 62 years ago, you may be able to request limited information from their Military Personnel File.

Will My Discharge Classification Show Up On My Dd

Yes, an official discharge classification is included on a service members DD-214.

Many potential employers, especially those in the federal government, will request a copy of the service members DD-214.

In the cases of punitive discharges, such as bad conduct or dishonorable discharges, the service member may be required by law to disclose the fact that they were convicted of a felony or served time in prison.

In addition to discharge classification, the DD-214 provides the following information:

  • Date and place of entry into active duty
  • Home address at time of entry
  • Date and place of release of active duty
  • Home address after separation
  • Last duty assignment and rank
  • Military job specialty
  • Total creditable service
  • Foreign service credited
  • Separation information This is the section where discharge information is included.

All of this information is included to make sure that the military members service is classified and quantified correctly. It is important to review this document for accuracy prior to separating, as making changes later can be a tedious, drawn-out process.

The DD-214 is used to determine eligibility for other veterans benefits, such as the GI Bill education benefit, which requires a certain length of active duty service for full benefits on top of requiring an honorable discharge.


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What Are The Consequences Of A Dishonorable Discharge

Those receiving a bad conduct discharge are not able to use any veterans programs this includes medical and dental benefits, VA housing programs, and the option to serve in the military in the future.

A dishonorable discharge also comes with a loss of personal civilian rights, such as the right to own a firearm.

to read more about the consequences and reasons for dishonorable discharge.

Reasons For Delays In Receiving A Dd214

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In some cases, receipt of a DD214 copy can be delayed, even if you pay for a research service. A common delay is associated with a fire that occurred in 1973. That fire destroyed many records associated with Airforce and Army vets, and the loss of those records can make getting a copy of your form more difficult. The National Archives recommends that you provide additional information, including last unit of assignment, place of discharge and where you entered the service, if you believe your records might have been compromised by that fire.

Another common reason for delay is that the vet never registered with the VA. That means that the records might not be on file with the VA and federal employees may have to search other locations. If you were recently discharged from the military and you apply in the wrong location, you might have to reapply for a copy of your DD214.

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What Is A General Discharge

Another type of military discharge you may hear about is whats known as a General Discharge.

A general discharge may or may not mean that the service member did something wrong. It is not punitive but does mean that some particular condition or circumstance warranted the members separation from the military.

A general discharge would not be considered bad, but its also not ideal.

The exception to this would be a General Under Honorable Conditions, which is considered ideal.

What Will The Hearing Be Like

A hearing will often last about an hour, but possibly longer. Usually the Discharge Review Board consists of five officers and other senior members of the active military. You have a choice about whether to testify or not. If you testify under oath, the members of the board can ask you questions. Some vets prefer to make a statement to avoid this.

Each person gets one vote, and you will be awarded a discharge upgrade if the majority of the board members cast a vote in your favor.

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Required Information To Request Replacement Dd Form :

  • Veterans complete name used while in service.
  • Service number or Social security number.
  • Branch of service.
  • Dates of service.
  • Date and place of birth .
  • Recommended information : Purpose for request , deadline, additional forms or information required.

If you believe your records may have been destroyed in the 1973 fire, then you should have the following information available:

  • Place of discharge.
  • Last unit of assignment.
  • Place of entry into the service, if known.

The Privacy Act of 1974 requires all military records requests be submitted in writing. The veteran or next-of-kin must sign and date each DD Form 214 request.

Receipt Of The Dd: Who Gets One Who Doesnt And When

How to get a copy of a DD 214

Every veteran is supposed to receive both a short and long copy of their form when they are discharged from the military. Copies of the form are also sent to federal and state agencies, including the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs. The original copy of the form is typically housed with the military branch for which the veteran served temporarily. After a certain amount of time, its moved to a permanent federal archive.

Not every person associated with military service will have a DD214. If youre in the active or inactive reserves, you are technically not fully separated from your service. The same is true for anyone in the National Guard or those who havent completed their service or been formerly discharged.

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The Dd: A Vital Document For Those Discharged From The Military

The DD214 is a vital document and should be treated with the same care Social Security cards, marriage licenses, and birth certificates are. If you do lose your DD214, a copy can be requested. Since the form is so critical in accessing benefits, its a good idea to check now: do you have the form? If not, consider requesting it now before it becomes an emergency for yourself or your loved ones.

Interested in more information on Veteran death benefits and memorialization? Click the button below to download our complete guide.

How To Apply To A Discharge Review Board

Discharge Review Board. Complete an Application for Review of Discharge From the Armed Services of the United States. You can complete it online, or get it from a local Department of Defense installation or the regional office of the Department of Veterans Affairs . Either submit the application online or mail it to the address below for your branch of the service. Be very thorough in your application about all the reasons you believe you are entitled to an upgrade. Any issues you neglect to list will not be considered by the board, even if you or your lawyer raise them later on.


Attn: Office of Military PersonnelUS Coast Guard2100 2nd Street S.W., Stop 7801Washington, DC 20593-7801

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How To Get A Dd214 For A Deceased Relative

If a veteran is deceased, the surviving next-of-kin may request a copy of the DD214 using the online order form that can be filled out on the National Archives Website. The form must bear the signature of the next of kin and mailed in along with any other required documents.

Below are the step-by-step instructions on how to obtain a deceased relatives DD214:

National Personnel Records Center

Alternatively, you can fax it to the National Personnel Records Center at 801-9195.

Request Recent Military Records


If You Are a Veteran or Next-of-Kin

To get a copy of the vets military records, you can:

Most requests are free.

If You Are Not the Veteran or Next-of-Kin

You can only get limited information about non-archival records without the consent of the veteran or next-of-kin. Non-archival records are those from 62 years ago to the present. Learn about access to non-archival military records by the general public and researchers.

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Cost: Most Basic Requests Are Free But It Depends On The Discharge Date

Free if Discharge Date is LESS than 62 years ago:

Generally there is no charge for basic military personnel and medical record information provided to veterans, next of kin and authorized representatives from Federal records.

Some companies advertise DD Form 214 research services and will charge a fee for obtaining copies. This is provided as a free service by the National Archives and Records Administration.

Costs for Discharge Dates MORE than 62 years ago:

There is a fee for records that are considered “Archival,” which depends on the discharge date. If the request is made 62 years after the service member’s separation from the military, the records are now open to the public and subject to the public fee schedule . This is a rolling date, the current year minus 62 years. Learn more.

These archival requests require the purchase of the COMPLETE photocopy of the Official Military Personnel File :

If your request involves a service fee, you will be notified as soon as that determination is made.

Response times from NPRC vary depending on the complexity of your request, the availability of the records, and our workload.

We work actively to respond to each request in a timely fashion, keep in mind we receive approximately 4,000 – 5,000 requests per day.

You may request military service records if you are:

Dd Form 214 And Veteran Funeral Cremation And Burial Benefits

The VA provides a number of funeral benefits for vets, but you need the DD214 to access them. In some cases, you might need to expedite a copy of the form to receive the benefits in time, though its still possible you could wait six to eight weeks. One way around the issue is to work with your provider to schedule a memorial service following a cremation or burial. Memorial services are less time-sensitive, allowing families to include appropriate vet-related benefits in a service after the form is received.

In some cases, vets might have an equivalent form that provides the same information as the DD214. This is especially true for service members who were discharged before 1950 even after 1950, other forms were in circulation that detailed discharge status and military service, such as the War Department Adjutant General Office Form 53-55.

If youre planning ahead for end-of-life matters and you havent been discharged from the military yet, you obviously wont have a DD214. You can provide a copy of your military ID or other proof that you are active-duty military to the funeral provider youre working with.

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Who Needs A Dd214 Form

VA Mortgage Loans

Before you can obtain a Certificate of Eligibility foryour VA Home Loan, you must first provide a DD-214 to the VA.

Background Checks

The DD Form 214 is commonly requested by employers to provemilitary service and confirm discharge status, and routinelyrequired for jobs requiring security clearance.

Military Funeral Honors

Eligible veterans are entitled to an honor guard, free ofcharge. Funeral directors generally handle these arrangementswith the appropriate military service. Obtaining the veteran’sDD-214 without delay is important in these time-sensitivesituations. Expedited service is often requested for thispurpose.

Burial At Sea

The US Navy offers sea burial for veterans, active dutymembers, and some family and civilians. A copy of DD Form 214 is required in the Burial at Sea Request package.

VA Benefits

VA Benefits From the GI Bill to VA mortgage loans, fromdisability compensation to home improvement grants, the VArequires a DD-214 to prove military service and apply forbenefits.

Job Promotions

Some government jobs offer a points-based preference systemfor hiring veterans. A DD-214 is required to establish yourpreference level.

Burial Benefits

The National Cemetery Administration through the Department ofVeterans Affairs offers an array of burial benefits. A DD-214is required to determine eligibility.

License Plate

Who Can Make The Request

Types of Army discharges

Veterans and next-of-kin of deceased veterans have the same access rights to the record. The next-of-kin is defined as any of the following:

  • the un-remarried widow or widower
  • son
  • mother
  • brother or sister

In the event a next-of-kin is making the request, proof of death of the veteran must be provided. Acceptable proof include: a death certificate, a letter from the funeral home, or a published obituary.

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Consider Registering It With Your County Or Town Hall

Your DD Form 214 can be registered with many town halls or county registrars, just like a land deed or vehicle title. You can consider doing this to maintain a record of your service because it will make document retrieval quick and easy.

Make sure state or local laws do not permit public access to your DD Form 214 before registering your DD Form 214 with any office.

Because it has your SSN, you may be exposing your private information to the world, making you an easy target for identity theft.

You may also consider getting your DD Form 214 registered or notarized with your town registrar to keep it on file for certain veterans benefits, such as property tax assessments.

Some counties offer veterans with disability ratings discounted property taxes. However, they usually require a copy of both your DD From 214 and your award letter from the VA stating your service-connected disability rating.

This is well worth the hassle if it saves you a significant amount of money on your property taxes.

What Are The Benefits Of An Honorable Discharge

Those who separate or retire under an honorable discharge will receive all of the benefits available to veterans.

Depending on their length of service, this can include retirement pay, GI bill benefits, medical and dental coverage, and home loan assistance.

Other benefits include disability compensation , employment assistance, and federal hiring preferences.

There are also numerous private organizations that offer assistance to veterans with an honorable discharge.

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What Is A Dd 214 Document

in: DD Form 214. The DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, generally referred to as a DD 214, is a document of the United States Department of Defense, issued upon a military service members retirement, separation, or discharge from active-duty military. History and usage.

What Is A Medical Separation

Military Service: Military Service Number On Dd214

A medical separation is a type of military discharge that stems from a soldier, sailor, or Marine having a physical or mental condition that affects their ability to serve.

This discharge is determined via the 2 medical review boards: Medical Evaluation Board and Physical Evaluation Board .

Typically, a Soldier, Sailor, Marine, or Airmen will present themselves to the board seeking a medical separation.

With that said, the commanding officer of the persons unit can also initiate this process without the input of the person serving.

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Request Military Service Records

Recent military service and medical records are not online. However, most veterans and their next of kin can obtain free copies of their DD Form 214 and the following military service records any of the ways listed below.

Looking for records?

How can I check on the status of my request?

Allow about 10 days for us to receive and process your request before checking your request status.

Please indicate whether you know your request number using the buttons below:

Yes, I know my request number No, I don’t know my request number

You may also telephone the NPRC Customer Service Line : 314-801-0800. Note: Our peak calling times are weekdays between 10:00 a.m. CT and 3:00 p.m. CT. Staff is available to take your call as early as 7:00 a.m. and as late as 5:00 p.m. CT.

What Are The Consequences Of An Entry

As mentioned earlier, an entry-level separation is really a neutral type of discharge.

Its nowhere near the severity of a bad conduct or dishonorable discharge, but its also not even close to an honorable or general discharge.

Probably the biggest consequence of getting an entry-level separation is future employment.

While it isnt likely to have a negative impact on future employment opportunities, some potential employers may look at this type of discharge in a negative light.

For example, they may think that, because you couldnt conform to military procedures or life, that you may not conform to their business.

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Veterans Military Discharge Documents

The documents listed below may be used to establish honorable active military service. NCA will accept the following documents, with some exceptions, to verify eligibility when requesting a headstone or marker.

* A DD Form 256 or DD Form 257 must indicate a period of active duty service dates to be a valid document for eligibility determination purposes.

** Valid only if active duty service dates are indicated.

*** The DD Form 214 has been issued by all military services since January 1, 1950. Before January 1, 1950, several similar forms were used by the military services.

**** NGB Form 22 can be used to verify eligibility if it indicates prior active federal service other than for training or a minimum of 20 years total service for pay.


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