Smart, Effective Military and Criminal Defense
Correction of Military Records
The Army and the Air Force each have a Board for Correction of Military Records and the Navy and Marine Corps have a Board for Correction of Naval Records. These boards are governed by Title 10 United States Code Section 1552 and are authorized to correct any military record when "necessary to correct an error or injustice." The Secretaries of the respective military departments act through these boards and the decisions of the boards, when completed, constitute "final agency action" subject to review in federal court under the Administrative Procedure Act.
Unlike the Discharge Review Boards of the services (which have a 15-year application window), applications to a correction board should be submitted within 3 years of the discovery of the error or injustice, or within 3 years of when the error or injustice could reasonably have been discovered. The boards may, however, waive the 3-year limitation in the interest of justice for meritorious applications.
The application process is initiated using a DD Form 149 on which the applicant sets forth how and why the record should be corrected and includes his or her evidence and argument in support of the requested relief. Upon receipt of the application, the correction board will normally seek an advisory opinion from the office of primary responsibility (personnel, legal, finance, etc.) for the issues raised. The applicant is then given an opportunity to comment on any advisory opinion. Thereafter, the board considers the application in session and issues a decision. An applicant can request reconsideration of an adverse decision but only on the basis of new evidence not previously discovered and submitted.
Bruce Lennard has extensive experience with the Air Force Board for Correction of Military Records. As a Judge Advocate Lieutenant Colonel, Bruce was Chief of Miliary Personnel Litigation at Headquarters Air Force and regularly defended decisions of the AFBCMR against federal court challenges alleging that the board had been arbitrary and capricious, or acted contrary to law. In fact, Bruce briefed the assembled AFBCMR on his branch's litigation efforts on their behalf (see Lineberger Memo) and even sat in on actual deliberations of the board to become intimately familiar with their processes.
Bruce Lennard also made his own application to the Air Force Board for Correction of Military Records when he felt he had been unjustly denied the opportunity to retire in grade as a Lieutenant Colonel. In his own case, the AFBCMR sought no less than five advisory opinions as Bruce fought hard for the relief he knew he was entitled to. In the end, despite four recommendations to deny his application, Bruce won his case on the merits and his record was corrected to show that he was retired in the grade of Lieutenant Colonel. Bruce has included the relevant documents below to demonstrate how important it is to have qualified and tenacious legal counsel on your side when trying to convince the board to recognize that error or injustice has occurred and to correct the status quo.
As can be seen, the real fight often times comes in the advisory opinions and comments thereto. The services will have lawyers arguing against your application, you should have an experienced lawyer arguing back, on your behalf. Military Defense Lawyer Bruce Lennard is ready and able to assist you in your quest for correction of your military records based on error or injustice.
Bruce's Application to the AFBCMR
30Sep03 Advisory from the Air Force Personnel Center
Comment to 30Sep03 Advisory
18Dec03 Advisory from Assistant Secretary of Air Force
Comment to 18Dec03 Advisory
4May04 Advisory from Air Force Deputy General Counsel
Comment to 4May04 Advisory
28Jun04 Advisory from Assistant Secretary of Air Force
Comment to 28Jun04 Advisory
2Nov04 Advisory from Air Force Deputy General Counsel
Comment to 2Nov04 Advisory
Final Decision of the AFBCMR
Contact The Lennard Law Office as soon as possible for a free consultation on your case.