The National Maritime Center (NMC) is responsible for managing more than 2 million merchant mariner records that date back to the early 1900s, including American Merchant Mariners considered “active duty” for the purposes of laws administered by the Veterans Administration. The NMC is the approving official for World War II Merchant Marine separation documents.
WWII Benefit/Records Requests
WWII Veteran Eligibility Requests
United States Merchant Mariners who served in ocean going service during December 7, 1941, to December 31, 1946, are considered "active duty" under the provisions of Public Laws 95-202 and 105-368. To determine eligibility for a Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, DD Form 214, or a Report of Casualty, DD From 1300, a member must not only have served within the qualifying period, but also meet the following eligibility criteria.
Requests should be submitted using a DD Form 2168, Application for Discharge of Member or Survivor of Member of Group Certified to Have Performed Active Duty with the Armed Forces of the United States. You can save this form to your desktop then e-mail it as an attachments with all your supporting documentation.
In addition, Public Law 105-368, which applies only to service performed during the period of August 16, 1945 to December 31, 1946, requires that the Coast Guard collect a $30 processing fee for each application. If qualified ocean going service was served and you wish to have this period certified, please mail a copy of the completed DD Form 2168 along with a check or money order made payable to the U.S. Treasury.
For additional information see Reference Information Paper # 77.