What is mandatory separation processing?

I speak to clients and prospective clients all the time who misunderstand the difference between mandatory processing for separation and mandatory separation from the military.

There are many grounds that require mandatory processing for administrative separation from the military: they generally include a positive drug urinalysis (drug abuse), a substantiated incident of physical domestic abuse, sexual assault, or sexual harassment, alcohol rehabilitation failure, or family advocacy failure.  There are some minor differences in the rules governing mandatory processing among the different services and whether waivers are available.  But often my clients believe that they must be separated and waive important due process rights because they misunderstand what mandatory processing actually means.

Mandatory processing DOES NOT mean mandatory separation.  The member has important due process rights to fight the separation.  The most basic example is a positive urinalysis result for, as an example, cocaine.  The member will be notified that he or she is being processed for separation for drug abuse based on the positive drug urinalysis and has the right to elect a hearing and to be represented by counsel, including civilian counsel.  This notification process and right to elect a hearing is mandatory processing.  Countless Soldiers, Airman, Marines, Sailors, and Coastguardsmen have fought a positive urinalysis at an administrative separation board (hearing) and won, saving their careers.

Do not interpret mandatory processing for administrative separation to mean mandatory separation.  As soon as you become aware that you are suspected of any type of misconduct by the military, you should consult an experienced military law attorney.

Based in Jacksonville, FL, Korody Law represents members of the Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Army, and Coast Guard facing administrative separation and military justice actions worldwide.

Korody Law, P.A. 118 W. Adams Street, Suite 500, Jacksonville, FL 32202 - (904) 383-7261

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