How does the discharge upgrade process work?

Along with the Application for the Review of Discharge, DD Form 293, you are allowed to submit a written “brief” to the Discharge Review Board, explaining why you believe a Discharge Upgrade is warranted. Mr. Cassara will usually file a written submission, along with any supporting documents that justify the upgrade of your discharge.

There are basically two types of review. You can submit the request solely in written form (a “records review,”) or you can ask to appear in person before the Discharge Review Board. The Army and Air Force Discharge Review Boards meet in Washington, D.C., and have traveling boards that meet all over the country. The Navy Discharge Review Board only meets in Washington, D.C.

Mr. Cassara has appeared in person before the Discharge Review Boards for all services, and can advise you of the differences between them. The personal appearance is generally the best chance you will have to demonstrate to the Board why your discharge should be upgraded. However, it is important to know that you are only allowed two chances to request an upgrade. As such, it is sometimes better to file for a “records review” prior to seeking a personal appearance before the board.