How Do I Get My Military DD-214?

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The DD-214 form is an official document that shows proof of military service. The DD-214 contains vital information, such as the service member's Social Security number, birth date, discharge date, type of discharge, awards and missions. An original DD-214 is usually issued to the service member at the time of separation or retirement from active military service. Veterans need to present a signed copy of the DD-214 to prove military service when seeking education, employment or veterans benefits. To obtain a DD-214 form, the veteran or next of kin must file an official request form with the National Archives' National Personnel Records Center (NPRC).

  • Obtain an official request form for the DD-214. Veterans and next of kin can access and customize DD-214 request forms online using the official eVetRecs site. Requesters other than the veteran or next of kin must fill out an SF-180 form.

  • Complete the request form thoroughly and accurately. Provide basic required information, such as the veteran's Social Security number, birth date, unit information and service dates. Optional information, such as the reason or purpose of your request or any deadlines you may have can help the NPRC locate and process your records request in a more timely manner.

  • Print, sign and date your DD-214 request form. You can mail or fax the signed and dated request to the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, Missouri.

  • Check the status of your request by phone or by email. You can usually expect to receive the DD-214 form within 10 days. However, requests for older records from the 1970s or earlier, which require more extensive research, may take six months or longer.

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