It is not uncommon for a veteran or surviving family member to discover what they perceive to be an error or injustice in a military service record. The correction of military records can be a complex, frustrating process. In the hands of an experienced legal professional, however, you might have a better chance at a beneficial resolution.
The Board for Correction of Military Records (BCMR) exists to help individuals resolve mistakes or injustices. Any request must be submitted to the BCMR within three years from the date that the mistake or injustice was discovered - or should have been discovered.
While a three year time limit might seem like an adequate duration, there is a significant amount of work that must be completed to present your case in the best light possible. For example, work to be completed can include:
- Comprehensive review of military record
- Signed statements of witnesses
- Arguments supporting the requested correction
- Collection of evidence supporting the requested correction
- Investigating records that support your claim
To justify any correction, the applicant must provide strong, comprehensive evidence to bolster his or her position. An experienced lawyer can help collect the appropriate evidence and put together the best case possible.
It is worth noting, however, that the board can excuse the failure to file within three years if the applicant can demonstrate why it is in the interest of justice to consider the correction despite the delay. No matter your specific situation, an attorney experienced in the correction of military records can provide the effective guidance you need.