Army Discharge Review Board

Mission Statement

Reviews discharges of former soldiers, except those given by reason of a sentence of a General Court Martial or over 15 years since discharge. The purpose of the review is to determine if the discharge was granted in a proper manner, i.e. in accordance with regulatory procedures in effect at the time, and that it was equitable, i.e. giving consideration to current policy, mitigating facts, and the total record.


The objective of the Army Discharge Review Board (ADRB) is to examine an applicant's administrative discharge and to change the characterization of service and/or the reason for discharge based on standards of equity or propriety. (Exceptions: Discharge or dismissal by general court-martial and discharges over 15 years old. These issues can be addressed by the Army Board for Correction of Military Records by submitting a DD Form 149).

The ADRB is not authorized to revoke any discharge, to reinstate any person who has been separated from the Army, or to recall any person to active duty. Bad-conduct discharges given as a result of a special court-martial may be upgraded only on the basis of clemency.

The ADRB will consider applications on a records review basis only or through a personal appearance in Arlington, VA (Crystal City).

The ADRB conducts reviews in one of three ways at the applicant's option:

  1. Applicant personally appears before the Board with or without counsel.
  2. Counsel appears on the applicant's behalf.
  3. The Board evaluates the case based on documentation in the military record and additional evidence provided by the applicant.

This gives the applicant latitude in presenting evidence, witnesses, and testimony in support of his/her case.

You may engage private counsel at your own expense or you may contact one of the Veterans organizations who provide free counsel or a representative to assist in case preparation.

Application Procedures (click to learn about application procedure)

Frequently Asked Questions