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Seal of Board of Corrections for Naval Records
Link to BCNR's Mission Statement

Link to BCNR's Process Description
Link to BCNR's Background History Link to Applicant Information
Link to BCNR's Frequently Asked Questions Link to BCNR Contact Information



Click on Anchor to return to the Top of PageMission

The Board for Correction of Naval Records (BCNR) was created by Congress in 1946 to provide a method for correction of errors or removal of injustices from current and former Navy and Marine Corps member’s records without the necessity for private legislation.  The statutory authority for the BCNR is codified in 10 U.S.C 1552. The Secretary of the Navy has delegated to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy  for Manpower and Reserve Affairs (ASN(M&RA)) the responsibility for the supervision of the BCNR.



 BCNR History

 BCNR is the highest echelon of administrative review within the Department of the Navy.  It consists of two parts (a) the board members appointed by the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Manpower and Reserve Affairs), who sit in panels of not less than three members to hear and adjudicate applications and (b) the BCNR  staff which administers and supports the Board Members.  BCNR's staff is designated as a shore activity under the direction and supervision of ASN(M&RA).


Applicant Information


When to Apply

The BCNR’s statue of limitations requires that applications be submitted within three years after the error or injustice is discovered.  BCNR can waive the three year time limit for filing if it would be in the interest of justice to do so.  Consequently applicants should explain the delay in submitting their applications and request a waiver of the time limit.  Additionally, if there are other administrative remedies available by which the applicant can obtain the relief he/she seeks, the applicant must pursue all such remedies before applying to BCNR.


Who may apply to BCNR

 Any current or former member of the Navy or Marine Corps.  A service member’s spouse, parent, heir or legal representative may also apply if the service member is deceased, incapacitated or his/her whereabouts is unknown.  In cases involving deceased, incapacitated or missing service members, the applicant must show that he/she is entitled to apply on behalf of the service member by submitting proper documentation e.g., marriage license, death certificate, court order or decree.


Before proceeding further you should read the "Applicant's Guide" which is enclosure (3) of SECNAVINST 5420.193.  This guide provides detailed information on how to apply and how the BCNR process works.  This guide is available for downloading/reading at:

(Adobe Acrobat Reader is Required - Click here to download)


How to Apply

You must submit a signed DD Form 149 , Application for Correction of Military Records to BCNR.   This form can be downloaded from the following site.

(Adobe Acrobat Reader is Required - Click here to download)


How to Contact Us  

  When you have completed your application you have two options, you may either fax or mail your application to the Board.

BCNR’s Voice number : 703-614-1402

BCNR's DSN: 224-1402 or 224-9857

BCNR’s Fax number : 703-614-9857

Mailing Address :
  Board for Correction of Naval Records
  2 Navy Annex, Room 2432
  Washington, DC 20370-5100



Processing of Applications

 Application processing involves multiple actions.  Upon receipt, each application is subject to a preliminary review to determine if the problem can be resolved by other administrative means.  If it cannot, the application is processed by the BCNR staff for presentation to the Board.  This entails procuring the necessary records and advisory opinions from cognizant offices,  as appropriate.  An advisory opinion that does not fully support the relief requested will be referred to  the applicant or the applicant's counsel for comment.

Except in those unusual cases where a personal appearance is granted, the Board bases its decision on the evidence contained in the application and appropriate naval records.  The burden is on the applicant to submit substantial evidence to support the existence of an error or injustice.

Unless procured by fraud, an approved decision of the Board is final and binding on all Navy/Marine Corps officials and other government agencies.



Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Can you give me some common examples of other administrative remedies that I must use before coming to BCNR? 

A: The most common situation involves applicants who seek to upgrade a discharge that is less than 15 years old and was not awarded by a general court-martial.  All such applicants must first apply to the Navy Discharge Review Board.  Another common example involves Marine Corps personnel who wish to have fitness reports removed from their records or changed.  All such requests must first be submitted to the Marine Corps' Performance Evaluation Review Board.  Similar requests for a change of Marine Corps reenlistment codes must first be submitted to Headquarters, Marine Corps.

 Q: Do I need to get a lawyer?

 A: That is a decision solely to be made by you.  Although most applicants represent themselves before BCNR, some do retain the services of an attorney.  This usually occurs when complex issues of law or fact arise.  But, please be aware that if you decide to hire an attorney it will be your responsibility to pay all legal expenses and you will not be reimbursed for these expenses even if BCNR grants your application.

*The application guide lists various service organizations that may provide counsel.

Q: How long will it take to get a decision in my case?

 A: That depends on the number and the complexity of issues raised, as well as any difficulties encountered in gathering your records.  On average it takes approximately 6 months to process a case.


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