SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home956. Effect of Discharge Under Dishonorable Conditions

956.1 What effect does a discharge under dishonorable conditions have on noncontributory military service wage credits?

A discharge under dishonorable conditions prohibits the granting of noncontributory military service wage credits for any period of active service to which the discharge applies.

956.2 What types of separations are considered to be under dishonorable conditions?

The following types of separations are issued under dishonorable conditions:

  1. A dishonorable discharge;

  2. A bad conduct discharge issued as a result of a sentence by a general court martial;

  3. A discharge for desertion;

  4. In the case of an officer, a resignation accepted “for the good of the service”;

  5. A discharge on the grounds that the person was a conscientious objector who refused to do military duty, to wear the uniform, or otherwise to comply with lawful orders of competent military authority; or

  6. A discharge by reason of conviction by a civil court for treason, sabotage, espionage, murder, rape, arson, burglary, robbery, kidnapping, assault with intent to kill, assault with a dangerous weapon, or an attempt to commit any of these crimes.

956.3 How are wage credits considered if a veteran has more than one discharge involving separate periods of active service?

A veteran may have more than one discharge involving separate periods of active service. The period of active service that a discharge under dishonorable conditions applies cannot be used for determining military service wage credits. However, wage credits may be granted for any other period of active service that a veteran was released under conditions other than dishonorable.

Last Revised: Jan. 20, 2006