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P. Simmons
P. Simmons, Military Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 32832
Experience:  Retired Marine Corps lawyer and Veterans Services Officer (VSO) with 12+ yrs. of experience.
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My daughter had just signed up for the army. She had her date

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My daughter had just signed up for the army. She had her date and everything. She had take. Her initial drug test came back negative, she went to MEPS did her physical everything and drug test all was good, got her date got her job. Then today she gets a phone call she needed to go down and do paper work. The. A general called her and told her she was discharged for testing posituve for THC. My daughter has smoked weed not alot but here and there ( I didn't approve of it), and she stopped almost 2 months ago she had decided she needed to do something with her life. I'm heart broken for her, she wanted this so bad, and I'm not saying this cause I wouldn't be writing if I had any doubt, I believe her that she has not smoked. I don't know what happened but this is not fair. They are doing an investigation but what happens now is there anything she can do? Can she join another service?
Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years military law experience.

Can you tell me, did she actually enlist? Go off to bootcamp? Or did this happen prior?

And if she did go to bootcamp, can you tell me, is she still in? Or have they discharged her?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
No her date was November 12th to go into bootcamp. She was sworn in, picked up job and everything.
Thank you

That makes it more complex for her...that is, since she had not yet activated, she would not have much "due process" to fight this.

Can you tell me, have they discharged her from the DEP (delayed entry program) already?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Yes they told her she was discharged just today. It just don't make sense she passed the first urine test. I'm not one of those mothers who is naive and I know my daughter is no angel, and wouldn't go through this trouble if I didn't believe her. Why will they not allow to retake the test, since it did come up negative. I feel she is looked at ok I got in took my urine so I can get high... She knows at MEPS another urine would be taken both my sisters were in the military. Just not making sense...
Thank you ma'am

I am sorry for this dilemma. The sad truth is that she has no right to demand a retest of the urine. Even had she gone into the service, there is no right to demand a retest.

So they can discharge.

Now the good news (if there is any good news) is that she will not get a "bad discharge". Since she never went onto active duty, they will give her what is called an "ELS" or entry level separation.

This is a separation that is not characterized. So she does not have a "bad" discharge.

If the discharge was approved then she is out. There is not anything she can effectively do at this point.

I wish I had better news.

This lack of due process (her lack of ability to fight this) is tied directly to her status. Because she had not formally entered the military (by going to bootcamp) she has very little in the way of due process rights. Other than requesting that they reconsider their decision, she has little in the way of recourse.

Now...can she join another service?

That will be up to the service. This separation will show up on her record. SO other services will know about it. But it is still possible, at least in theory, for her to join just makes it a bit more difficult. She would need to obtain a "waiver" or specific permission to enter despite the prior separation. The waiver would be decided by the recruiting command.

The largest problem she will face is the economy. The poor economy has sent kids flocking to the military for jobs...because of this the military is not giving out waivers very often.

That can change...if the wars get worse or the economy improves, the military will need to provide more waivers. So there may be an option in the future to allow your daughter to enlist.

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