Army Creates Webpage to Upgrade “Bad Paper” Discharges

The Army Review Board Agency (ARBA) has launched a special webpage to assist veterans seeking to upgrade a “Bad Paper” Discharge related to behavior problems caused by post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Instead of being treated for their PTSD, many servicemembers are wrongfully discharged as a result of minor infractions or “misconduct” resulting from mental health issues. When a servicemember receives a less-than-honorable discharge, the results can be devastating.  Servicemembers with other than honorable (OTH) discharges are ineligible to receive healthcare at the VA and therefore unable to seek treatment. Nor can they access VA disability compensation and pension, education benefits, or homeless services.

In 1979, Swords to Plowshares won its first case on PTSD. Since then, we have tirelessly advocated that justice should be restored for all former servicemembers who suffer from this affliction.

The ARBA webpage provides information and applications on how to seek an upgrade to a discharge from military service. It can be found here.

This resource is available only to individuals who have a discharge status of “other than honorable” and have served in the U.S. Army.  Due to the number of applications and complexity of the cases, it may take up to 12 months to receive notification of a decision.

If you’re an Army veteran with an “other than honorable” discharge, we recommend that you take a look at our Self-Help Materials on Upgrading your Discharge or contact a VA-accredited attorney that specializes in discharge upgrades to help guide you through the process.


Kevin C. Miller
Kevin served in the United States Marine Corps infantry from 2002-2006 with multiple deployments to Iraq. He graduated from Humboldt State University with a BA in Recreation Administration and a minor in Business Administration.

He works at Swords to Plowshares as the Strategic Partnership Associate and his primary focus of work includes building partnerships between employment and training providers, relevant state entities, not for profit associations and private employers. Follow his work on Twitter and LinkedIn.