The BCNR receives over 12,000 applications ("petitions") annually. Applications
are generally reviewed and presented to the Board in the order in which they are
received. Cases may sometimes take up to 12 months to review, and occasionally longer.
Processing time can be influenced by the volume of applications, the complexity
of the subject matter, and our commitment to a fair and complete review of every
case. However, the Board closely monitors case processing to mitigate potential
delays. The following information is provided to inform applicants ("petitioners"),
generally, about when they should expect the BCNR to issue a decision in their case:
The Board will consider applications for name changes to the DD214 to correct
an error or remove an injustice. The applicant must provide justification demonstrating
that they were a victim of an error (i.e., genuine error) or that having their former
name on their DD-214 causes an injustice (e.g., due to a divorce or their transgender
status). A signed and authenticated court order providing proof the applicant's
name was legally changed should accompany the application. As with all applications
to the Board, each application for a name change will be considered on its own merits."
If it has been less than 15 years since you were separated from the Navy or Marine
Corps, you must first apply to the Navy Discharge Review Board (NDRB), NDRB APPLICATION
(DD FORM 293)"
If it has been more than 15 years since you were separated or have already applied to the NDRB, you may apply to the Board for Correction of Naval Records (BCNR), BCNR APPLICATION((DD FORM 149))"
On September 3, 2014, the Secretary of Defense issued a memorandum providing
guidance to the Board for Correction of Naval Records
(Secretary Hagel Memo) as it considers petitions brought by veterans claiming
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) with other than honorable conditions discharge.
This includes a comprehensive review of all materials and evidence provided by the
applicant. A memo providing further clarifying guidance was issued on August 25,
2017, by the Undersecretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness
(USD P&R Memo).
This policy guidance is intended to ease the application process for veterans
who are seeking redress and assists the Board in reaching fair and consistent results
in these cases. The guidance also mandates liberal waivers of time limits, ensures
timely consideration of petitions, and allows for increased involvement of medical
personnel in Board determinations.
The guidance provides that liberal consideration will be given by the Board for
Correction of Naval Records in petitions for changes in characterization of service.
The supplemental guidance outlines specifically what type of records and evidence
will be given special and liberal consideration by the boards.
In an joint effort, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of
Defense partnered to provide step-by-step instructions on how to request a discharge
This guidance applies to veterans whose characterization of discharge was under
other than honorable conditions and who assert that they suffered PTSD or related
conditions that they believe mitigated the misconduct that led to the discharge.
This memorandum focuses on those veterans who served before PTSD was a recognized
diagnosis; however, the guidance will be applied to all veterans.
On September 20, 2011, the Under Secretary of Defense issued a policy that addresses
how service boards of correction should review applications to correction of records
of individuals discharged under DADT or a similar policy in place prior to DADT.
Boards were directed to normally grant requests to change narrative reasons of discharge,
characterization of discharges, and re-entry codes of individuals provided the following
two conditions are met:
-- The original discharge was based solely on DADT or a similar policy in place
prior to the enactment of DADT; and
-- There were no aggravating factors in the record, such as misconduct.
The policy directs that an honorable or general discharge should be considered
absent aggravating factors.
Former service members who wish to file an application with the Board under this
policy should annotate clearly on their application "DADT" or "Don't Ask, Don't
Tell" in block 5 of the DD Form 149. This will allow the Board to expedite consideration
of DADT cases.
Current and former members of the United States Navy and Marine Corps (including
Reserve personnel) may apply for a correction of an error or removal of an injustice
in their official military record. If a former service member is deceased or incompetent,
the member’s spouse, widow or widower, next of kin (parent, sibling, or child),
or legal representative can apply for the service member. An applicant must provide
legal proof of death or incompetence of the service member and proof of legal relationship.
DD149 Application and print a copy of the application form. An application may
also be obtained from BCNR by sending a request to the mailing address listed on
BCNR’s homepage. A video explaining how to complete the DD149 application is available
Records containing classified documents can only be obtained from the original
classification authority with a request to have documents reviewed for declassification.
BCNR is not a classification authority and does not receive or review classified
Please provide copies of all relevant military records in your possession and additional
evidence to support your application. Do not send original records. In addition,
you will need to provide copies of all correspondence you have with other agencies
regarding the issue for which you are applying. BCNR will only consider your application
once you have exhausted all your administrative remedies within the Department of
It depends on a number of factors. BCNR reviews applications in the order in
which they are received. Due to the large number of applications and the complexity
of cases, it may be as long as 18 months before a board considers your case. BCNR
processes over 14,000 applications annually and often must request records from
the National Personnel Records Center prior to assigning a case to an examiner.
Since BCNR is not an investigative agency, it also routinely requests advisory opinions
from other Department of Navy offices prior to hearing a case. The delays associated
with getting a case ready for a board can be lengthy depending on the workload of
these outside offices and the complexity of the issues involved. Title 10, United
States Code, Section 1557 requires BCNR to process cases in a timely manner. It
is our mission to consider all applications as soon as possible.
Yes, you will normally be provided 30 days to respond in writing to the opinion.
If you require additional time, you may request an extension provided it does not
require BCNR to exceed its statutory timeline standards.
When BCNR determines relief is required, it directs the responsible office to
make the necessary change(s) to the records. Depending on the offices involved,
these actions can take 3-4 months to complete after a BCNR decision is published.
In pay cases, the Defense Finance and Accounting System must take additional action
after a record is corrected. This often results in additional delay.
No, claims against the government for damages or compensation must be litigated
in a Federal court of appropriate jurisdiction.
No, there is no right to a hearing. The Board will determine whether to grant
a hearing based on the evidence presented in the case. If a hearing is granted,
no reimbursement of expenses will be authorized.
In accordance with Lipsman v. Secretary of the Army, 335 F. Supp. 2d 48 (D.D.C.
2204), the Board will reconsider an application if an applicant submits new evidence
not previously considered by the Board. If an application is submitted without new
evidence, the BCNR staff will administratively close the case.
BCNR will not consider cases that it does not have authority to correct. In addition,
it will not consider cases that are administrative corrections to military records.
Each application is unique and results depend on the facts and circumstances
of the case. However, many applicants fail to provide any evidence to support their
application and their contentions of error or injustice. It is important to keep
in mind that a presumption of regularity attaches to all official records. Consequently,
when applying for a correction of an official Naval record, the burden is on the
applicant to demonstrate the existence of probable material error or injustice.
Administrative corrections include a correction to a name corrected because it
was misspelled, has the wrong initial(s), reversed first or last name. Administrative
corrections also include an incorrect date of birth, incorrect social security number
(SSN), and/ or missing wards. The BCNR only processes administrative corrections
for records of veterans discharged more than 60 years ago. Requests for these types
of corrections on records less than 60 years old should be sent to:
Navy (active, reserve, retired, and veterans):
NAVY PERSONNEL COMMAND (ATTN: PERS-3E)
5720 INTEGRITY DRIVE
MILLINGTON TN 38055-3120
Records Management Marines Corps (active, reserve, retired, and veterans):
For records after 1990, write to Headquarters:
United States Marine Corps (MMMA)
3280 RUSSELL ROAD
QUANTICO, VA 22134-5103
For records before 1990, write to Headquarters:
United States Marine Corps (MMRP-10)
2008 ELLIOTT ROAD, QUANTICO, VA 22134-5103
Veterans or next-of kin of deceased veterans can obtain and fill out SF 180,
Request Pertaining To Military Records or write a letter to request replacement
awards. Each request should be filled out neatly and should include the veteran's
complete name used while in service, rank, service number, social security number,
branch of service, dates of service (date entered and date released), and it should
be signed by the veteran or the next of kin if the veteran is deceased. If using
the SF 180, check the "Other" box in section II, paragraph 1, and enter "replacement
awards". Supporting documentation such as discharge paperwork or the veteran's DD
Form 214 or other military records can help speed the process.
Refer to Page 3 of the
for the complete address list of custodians and self-service websites (where
to write/send your completed form).
If you have already submitted a request to the appropriate Navy/Marine Corps Award
Board and it was denied, then you may submit an application to the BCNR.