Separation Boards and Boards of Inquiry

Separation Boards and Boards of Inquiry

The administrative separation process is the military’s way of attempting to fire someone. Depending on a variety of factors, it can be done with or without a hearing. The entitlement to a hearing varies from service to service, so it is important to consult a lawyer to determine what category a servicemember is in; however, generally the servicemember’s rank, time in service, and type of discharge being sought are the driving factors.

These separation hearings do vary from service to service; however, they are generally composed of three board members and a prosecutor will be appointed to pursue the separation against the respondent. After being presented evidence from the prosecutor and the defense, the board members vote and make a recommendation to the separation authority. The board members’ recommendation is generally binding; however, there are some service specific exceptions.

If a servicemember is undergoing an administrative separation, he/she should take it very seriously. Not only can a servicemember be kicked out of the service, but they can also be given a General or Other than Honorable Discharge. These discharges can lead to the loss of important VA benefits, such as the Post 9/11 GI Bill and VA health benefits. If a servicemember is facing separation it is imperative that an experienced lawyer represents them.

Why Representation Matters

Servicemembers are appointed a military counsel (public defender) to represent them for any separation proceeding. The experience and legal acumen of these public defenders varies greatly. Furthermore, many of these JAGs do not have enough time to spend on properly representing clients at separation boards because of their numerous other cases.

Servicemembers facing the administrative separation process are allowed to hire their own civilian lawyer to represent them.  Servicemembers should want an experienced military lawyer who has the time to devote to representing them and give their case the attention it deserves.

Client Testimonials

“Attorney Barry represented me during my Army Separation Board in 2019. I was impressed with how thorough he was. He always made me feel as if my case was his priority and he was always approachable and honest in his responses...In the end, I was retained in the Army so I could finish the final 5 years of my career. I will always be grateful for such skilled representation throughout the process.”- E6, U.S. Army

“Attorney Barry is an incredible attorney that worked tirelessly for me and my case. He approaches his cases with passion and stands behind his clients and his work. My case took over a year and a half to complete and he stuck with me the whole time, responding very quickly to any questions that I had as they came up, and pressing for answers when it seemed my case would stall. He worked incredible hard to gather information and evidence in support of my case, making things very easy for me as a client. I feel extremely confident recommending him to anyone for legal representation.”- CW2, U.S. Army

Administrative Separation Process

Attorney Barry wrote a detailed article for Officers and Enlisted members of each service with the specifics of the Involuntary Separation Process. Read those Articles here.

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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. The information on this website is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing of this information does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.