Updating Military Records: Name and Gender Marker Changes
LGBTQ+ Rights & Gender Identification
Here, learn about updating military and Selective Service records following a legal name or gender marker change. The National Center for Transgender Equality offers guidance for updating DD214 and DEERS records, while Selective Service has policies and requirements for updating information based on assigned gender at birth. The Modern Military Association of America provides support for the LGBTQ+ military and veteran community, and future changes to Selective Service registration may be forthcoming.
How do I update military records?
The National Center for Transgender Equality has a guide for changing your DD214 Military Discharge Record and the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS). You can contact an attorney for more help.
The Modern Military Association of America is the largest non-profit for the LGBTQ+ military and veteran community.
How do I update selective service records if I have a name change?
If you are registered, you must tell Selective Service if you change your name. Selective Service asks you to contact them for information about legal name changes. You can call 847-688-6888 or toll-free at 888-655-1825.
How do I update selective service records if I change my gender marker?
You can find the Selective Service System’s policy on gender identity and registration here.
If I’m assigned male at birth, what are the selective service requirements?
Individuals assigned male at birth are required to register with Selective Service starting when you turn 18 and ending the day you turn 26. If you are required register, you must register within 30 days after your 18th birthday.
You must register with Selective Service to be eligible for government student aid, as well as for most government employment, if you apply with a male gender marker.
Texas DPS automatically sends your information to Selective Service if you apply for a Texas driver’s license listing “Male.” If you have ever had a Texas driver’s license that lists your gender as male, you are likely already registered. You can check your registration here.
If you were assigned male at birth but got a female gender marker on your Texas driver’s license before age 18 (meaning you were not automatically registered), you can register here.
If I’m assigned female at birth, what are the selective service requirements?
Individuals assigned female at birth are not required to register with Selective Service. However, Texas DPS will automatically send your information to Selective Service when you apply for a driver’s license or ID listing “Male.” If you change your gender marker to male before you turn 18, or at any time until you turn 26, and you then obtain a “Male” Texas driver’s license or ID, DPS may automatically register you with Selective Service. You may try to ask DPS not to send your information to Selective Service.
You must register, or prove you don’t have to register, to be eligible for government student aid, as well as most government employment, if you apply with a male gender marker.
If you have changed your gender marker to male (and were not automatically registered because of your Texas ID), you can either choose to register or ask for a Status Information Letter.
You may register here.
You can otherwise ask for a Status Information Letter (SIL) from Selective Service. The SIL will explain that you do not have to register. The letter only says you don’t have to register and doesn’t explain why, so it should not out you as transgender. The form to ask for an SIL can be found here.
On March 25, 2020, the National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service also released its Final Report recommending that Selective Service registration be made gender-neutral, which may result in future changes to the Selective Service System. You can find the full report here.
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LGBTQ+ Rights & Gender Identification
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