Category Archives: Discharges & Separation

Updated Memo: Military Medical Policies

This is an January 2014 update that replaces the 2007 memo titled Medical Discharge and Retirement. The revision was done by Alison Carter, Kathleen Gilberd, Jeff Matus, and Katie Tastrom, with helpful comments from Kit Anderton and Lenore Yarger.

Update to these documents (8/8/2014):

Our documents linked here do not yet incorporate the following updates. When they do, this message will be deleted. As always, if you are using older hard copy documents, check our site for more recent versions and/or DoD updates. 

DoD has reissued DoD Instruction1332.18, canceling both the older version and DoD Instruction 1332.38., along with Memoranda and Directive-Type Memoranda. At the same time, DoD has published two volumes of a DoD Manual 1332.18.


Memo Update: Representing Servicemembers in Involuntary Discharge Proceedings

MLTF’s memo “Representing Servicemembers in Involuntary Discharge Proceedings”  has been updated as of October 2013. It gives an overview of administrative discharges and procedures for challenging them. Written for attorneys and counselors, it is also helpful for servicemembers who are facing involuntary discharge.

Parts I and II were written by Kathleen Gilberd, a legal worker in San Diego who works in the areas of discharges and discharge review, and is executive director of the MLTF. Part III was written by Bridget Wilson, who practices military law in San Diego and is a volunteer attorney with the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network.

This replaces the 2007 edition of the memo by the same title.

Marines implement new standards for conscientious objectors

By Bill Galvin

In a new version of Marine Corps Order (MCO) 1306.16, issued in June of this year, the Department of the Navy, Marine Corps Headquarters, heightened the evidentiary standard a conscientious objector (CO) must meet. This reissue rescinds the previous version, which dates back to 1986.

MCO 1306.16F (2013) Download PDF    MLTF was unable to find any web page where there was public access to the new regs, so we are hosting this copy of the order, until such time that an official version is found. 

For the most part, the new MCO is the same. Some sections have been reworded, but essentially say the same thing. In some such cases the tone of the new wording favors the CO, while in others it seems to favor the command.

However, there are two important substantive changes.

Navigating the VA

A basic guide to how the VA system works and how to get earned benefits, along with practice pointers for vets and their advocates.

By Becca von Behren

Whether a service member wants to stay in the military or is fighting to get out, eventually, that person will be a veteran, and the Department of Veterans Affairs may play a significant role in the transition from active duty to veteran status.

This article gives a very basic overview of some of the more relevant principles of VA benefits, how the VA system works and some common myths about benefit entitlement. A few “practice pointers” are included to help avoid mistakes that newly discharged people often make in their encounters with the VA.

CLE: Military Discharge Upgrading & Discharge Review

MLTF will offer a CLE on Military Discharge Upgrading & Discharge Review at the NLG 2012 ‘Law for the People’ Convention in Pasadena, CA. The presenters will be Teresa Panepinto, Jim Klimaski, Bridgit Wilson and Kathy Gilberd.

Date & Time: Thursday, Oct. 11, 8:30a – 12:30a

Cost: Guild attorneys $75; other attorneys $100; law students and legal workers $25; scholarships available.

Download flyer and registration form. For further info, contact us.