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Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Military Law
Satisfied Customers: 20357
Experience:  Licensed attorney and former Navy JAG serving ashore, afloat and at the OJAG
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My son just got an administrative discharge from the Coast

Customer Question

My son just got an administrative discharge from the Coast Guard for sleepwalking. He entered bootcamp on August 30th. he has no history of sleepwalking. Is there anything he can do to stay? And is he eligible for any benefits if he can't?
JA: Are you overseas or stateside?
Customer: Statewide.
JA: Have you talked to anyone in the chain of command about this?
Customer: He went to his commanding officer.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: We told him not to sign anything. He said it was already going through.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Military Law
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 10 months ago.


Thank you for the information and your question and I am sorry to read about your son's situation. I can't second guess the Command's decision in this case since I don't have the facts from their perspective. However, I can tell you though that because of the cost in terms of money and time to train servicemembers, a Command is not going to discharge someone that they believe is medically qualified to be retained. Again though, don't know what evidence they have. Somnambulism though is service disqualifying in the sea services, like the Coast Guard.

Your son is not required to agree to the discharge, only acknowledge that he received the paperwork. If he refuses, he can still be separated. The Command will just note that he refused to sign but that he was given an opportunity to read his paperwork. If he believes their conclusion was incorrect, he can, after he is separated, file a petition with the Coast Guard Discharge Review Board.

The discharge is not adverse, it is a neutral discharge, Entry Level Separation (ELS). He would not be considered a Veteran under laws that provide for Veterans' benefits though since he did not have the requisite service time.

Please feel free to ask for clarification if needed. If none is needed, then if you could take a moment to leave a positive rating in the ratings box above, I will receive credit for assisting you today. The Site is acting up a bit, so if there is a delay in me getting back to you, please know I will as soon as the Site comes back up.

Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 10 months ago.

Hello again,

I wanted to touch base with you and make sure that you did not have any follow up questions for me from the answer I provided to you on the10th . For some reason, the Experts are not always getting replies or ratings (at the top of the question/answer page you are viewing or in the pop up box for this question), which is how we get credit(paid by the Site) for our work, that the customer thinks have gone through. In your case I received neither.

Please keep in mind that I cannot control the law or your circumstances, and am ethically bound to provide you with accurate and honest information based on the facts you give me even if the news is not good. If you are having technical difficulties with reading, replying or rating,please let me know so that I can inform the Site administrator. Please note that Site use works best while using a computer and using either Google Chrome or Firefox.

In any event, it was a pleasure assisting you and I would be glad to attempt to assist you further on this issue, or a new legal issue,if needed. You can bookmark my page at:

Thank you.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
I thought your answer was very vanilla. I found the same type of answer on the web through a google search. Unfortunately, one will live and learn; this website is not worth $40 per answer.
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 10 months ago.

Hello again and thank you for your reply. Just to be clear about payment. I haven't been paid a penny and won't be unless you leave a positive rating. I don't work for the Site so I don't know what you paid them, but since I provided the service and answered the actual question you asked, if you aren't going to provided a positive rating you can contact them about any refund you might seek.

As to my answer, it is the law. I can't dress it up. I am somewhat confused though why you might ask a question that you knew all of the answers to, but keep in mind we only know what you tell us. I believe I likely did provide some information you might not have found online, but nevertheless I answered the question you asked correctly and thoroughly and offered to answer follow up questions, so that leaves me puzzled why you wouldn't want to pay for the service you asked for and I delivered.

In any event, best to your son.

Customer: replied 10 months ago.
My response has nothing to do with not wanting to pay; I paid. I don't know why you would want to work for someone who will not pay you, and by this I mean the owner of the website. Unfortunately, this was my first time using this website for an answer. As a librarian, I am an accomplished researcher. I guess, I was hoping, that there was more to the law than could be found online. If you don't receive money for your answer, that has to do with your agreement with them.
Expert:  Marsha411JD replied 10 months ago.

I am not employed by the Site, I am an independent contractor. That is the Sites rule. You should get a refund, as you are entitled to one, since they didn't provide the service you expected and the person who actually did the work wasn't paid as you were expecting from your deposit. Up to you, but you did not pay for my service, only a deposit to the Site. Best to you.