Information on Military Discharges

The Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty, DD Form 214, is one of the most important documents the Service will ever give you. It is your key to participation in all Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) programs as well as several state and federal programs. Other programs that require DD Form 214’s include:

  • Disability compensation and pension
  • Vocational services
  • Education and training
  • Insurance services
  • Home loans
  • Burial at VA cemeteries
  • Loan guaranty services

There is never a fee for recording a military discharge.

In Ohio, the DD Form 214 can be registered or recorded at your County Recorder’s Office just like a deed or other significant document.

Immediately after you separate, register your DD Form 214 with your County Recorder. If you register your documents, they can later be retrieved quickly and conveniently at this office at no fee to you.

The first Military Discharge recorded at the Hamilton County Recorder’s Office belonged to Private William Dott of the Ohio Volunteer Infantry who was discharged October 28, 1862. Since that time, your Recorder has been safeguarding these important documents and making them available to American Veterans from every war.

To search for a recorded Military Discharge, please click here.

Replacing a Lost Military Discharge (DD Form 214)

If you did not record your DD Form 214 at the Recorder’s Office and you need a copy, you can request one by writing to the National Personnel Records Center.

Include the following information with your request:

  • Full name
  • Social Security/Service number
  • Current home number and area code
  • Branch of service
  • Approximate dates of service
  • Last unit of assignment
  • Place of entry into the service
  • Place of discharge
  • Place of birth
  • Return address
  • Reason for the request
  • Sign and date request with full signature - no initials

Mail your request to:

National Personnel Records Center
Attention: (Your Service, e.g. Army)
9700 Page Avenue
St. Louis, MO 63132-5100

For an application (Form 180) for a replacement of your DD Form 214, click here, or contact the National Personnel Records Center via the Internet by clicking here or calling them directly at:

Air Force 314.538.4218
Army 314.538.4222
Navy 314.538.4147
Marines 314.538.4147
Coast Guard 314.538.4147