|On January 19, 1988, the Secretary of the Air Force, Edward C. Aldridge, Jr., determined that the service of the "American Merchant Marine in Oceangoing Service during the Period of Armed Conflict, December 7, 1941, to August 15, 1945," shall be considered "active duty" under the provisions of Public Law 95-202 for the purposes of laws administered by the Veterans Administration. Although technically not part of the United States Merchant Marine, Civil Service vessels in ocean going service or foreign waters are also included as part of this approved group.|
|On Veterans Day, 1998, President Clinton signed Public Law 105-368. A provision of this law states that service during the period, August 16, 1945, to December 31, 1946, shall be considered active duty for the purpose of eligibility for certain limited veterans benefits. This law also requires that the Coast Guard collect a $30 processing fee for each application.|
To qualify and become eligible for veterans benefits, a member must not only have served within either of the two qualifying periods mentioned above, but also meet the following eligibility criteria:
Before you can receive veterans benefits, you must first submit a DD Form 2168. This form is available from Veterans Administration Offices, Merchant Marine veterans organizations, and from the offices listed below. A copy of DD Form 2168 can also be downloaded from this web site.
Completed forms should be sent to the appropriate office:
For Merchant Marine:
Army Transport Service:
Naval Transportation Service: