Discharge Review Board
Discharge Review Board
US Coast Guard Stop 7907
2703 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE
Washington, DC 20593-7907
The Coast Guard Discharge Review Board under Title 10, United States Code, 1553 provides the Secretary with the authority to establish a board to review discharges or dismissals from the Service. Part 51 of Title 33, Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), established the Coast Guard Discharge Review Board (DRB) and sets forth the procedure for seeking review after a member has been separated from the Coast Guard. 33 CFR 51.3 provides "[a] former member may apply to the DRB for a change in the character of, and/or the reason for, the discharge. The Coast Guard DRB review is generally applicable only to administrative discharges, however, the DRB may review the discharge of a former member by sentence of a court-martial for the purpose of clemency. You may read past DRB decisions that have been redacted to protect the applicant’s privacy at http://boards.law.af.mil.
HOW TO APPLY TO THE DRB
Eligibility is for former members of the Coast Guard or Coast Guard Reserve discharged within the past 15 years who believe their separation was inequitable and/or lacking legal sufficiency. To apply, you must complete and submit an application form, DD 293, along with any documentary evidence to support your case. To download a DRB application, form DD 293, go to the following website:
BEFORE YOU APPLY
Before applying to the DRB, please understand the scope and authority of this Board. The DRB has authority to recommend changes to the items issued in Blocks 24-28 of the DD-214:
Character of Service
Narrative Reason for Separation
The DRB does not have the authority to:
Recommend changes based on physical disabilities
Suggest changes to other Blocks on the DD-214
Remove items from the service Record for the applicant’s likeness
Should you want to pursue these actions, your appropriate forum resides with the Board for Correction of Military Records (BCMR) by completing form DD149:
COMPLETING YOUR DD 293
You should complete every section of the application form. If you need more space in Block 6, please continue in Blocks 13 and 15 to clearly state the issues related to your discharge. Explain what error or injustice you believe the Coast Guard has committed on your discharge. In addition, list whatever evidence you have gathered in support of your case. Attach any such evidence to your application when you submit it.
It is important to submit any evidence that helps support your case. The DRB will retrieve your official Coast Guard record, review electronic records and any correspondence related to your discharge. You are encouraged to submit copies of any records, correspondence, or other documents that support your case. This evidence should be submitted with your application. The burden of proof rests with the applicant. Please note the Board will not recommend a less favorable discharge than issued at the time of separation. The DRB will carefully consider the upgrades requested, therefore all cases will either stand as issued or render relief within Blocks 24-28 of form DD-214.
Upon receiving your completed application, the DRB will review the application and submit an advisory opinion to the Office of the General Counsel for Legal review. The DRB recommendation and Legal endorsement are not the Board's final decision. The final authority lies with the Assistant Commandant for Human Resources. At any time in the process, the applicant may contact the DRB for a status of their pending case. The applicant will be notified in writing of the final decision.
Generally, most DRB applicants do not hire an attorney to represent them. However, depending upon the complexity of your case, you may wish to employ a private attorney or seek legal assistance through a veterans' organization to help you complete your application. Such assistance may help you identify legal issues, assemble evidence, and present strong arguments.
You may contact the DRB by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org; or by sending a letter to the DRB at the mailing address shown above.