PROTECT YOUR DD-214

By Col. Mike Lazorchak USAF (Ret.) , forwarded by p38bob

I covered this subject several times when I was writing for the Times Newspapers, most recently in 2002. This is a widespread problem because of local laws governing the release of “public records.”

At least three states, Florida, Virginia, and California have passed new laws restricting the release of DD Forms 214 and other such personal information without the owners permission.

For decades military retirees were advised by their Services to register their final DD Forms 214 at a local court house for safekeeping. They no longer advise retirees to do this because of
several significant cases of Identity Theft that occurred when individuals obtained hundreds of these documents legally from court houses and sold them to anyone who wanted to buy the information.

My recommendation is to advise retirees to get these documents under their control if the local laws will allow that to happen (many don't). However, there is a procedure to permit the individual to formally petition their local court to eliminate the information from the public record.

A sample petition to do this was published in the May 2002 Air Force retiree newsletter, Afterburner, A copy maybe obtained on the internet from this AF website. Select May 2002 version. Go to page 4.

Editor's Note: The State of Washington passed a similar bill in 2002 that denies access to the DD-214.