GI Rights Hotline

Military Discharges and Military Counseling

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Comments: To view or download the complete regulation, click on the the link to it in the box above these comments.

2. Policy

a. Servicemembers returning from deployment in a hostile fire/imminent danger war zone area diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) may not be separated based on a personality disorder. Members with PTSD/TBI should be referred to a Physical Evaluation Board (PEB) for possible disability determination.

b. Per references (a) through (d) and MILPERSMAN 1910-120, members may be processed for separation based on a clinical diagnosis of a personality disorder when

(1) the disorder is so severe that the member's ability to function effectively in the Navy environment is significantly impaired, and

(2) the impairment interferes with the member's performance of duty, or poses a threat to the safety or well-being of the member or others, and the member has not responded to leadership and counseling.

c. Separation processing may not be initiated until the member has been counseled formally concerning deficiencies and has been afforded an opportunity to overcome those deficiencies as reflected in appropriate counseling or personnel records. For personality disorders, the member will also be counseled that the diagnosis of a personality disorder does not qualify as a disability.

d. Separation on the basis of personality disorder is authorized only if a diagnosis by a psychiatrist or PhD-level psychologist utilizing reference (a), and per procedures established by the Navy, concludes that the disorder is so severe that the member's ability to function effectively in the military environment is significantly impaired. For servicemembers who have served or are currently serving in imminent danger pay areas, a diagnosis of personality disorder as addressed in the previous sentence must be corroborated by a peer or higher-level mental health professional and endorsed by the Surgeon General of the Navy. The diagnosis must address post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or other mental illness co-morbidity. The onset of personality disorder is frequently manifested in the early adult years and may reflect an inability to adapt to the military environment as opposed to an inability to perform the requirements of specific jobs or tasks or both. As such, observed behavior of specific deficiencies should be documented in appropriate counseling or personnel records and include history from sources such as supervisors, peers, and others, as necessary to establish that the behavior is persistent, interferes with assignment to or performance of duty, and has continued after the servicemember was counseled and afforded an opportunity to overcome the deficiencies.

e. Separation for personality disorder is not appropriate nor should it be pursued when separation is warranted on the basis of unsatisfactory performance or misconduct. In such circumstances, the member should not be separated under this paragraph regardless of the existence of a personality disorder. Unless found fit for duty by the disability evaluation system, a separation for personality disorder is not authorized if service-related PTSD is also diagnosed.

5. MHP Assessment

Comments: An MHP is a Mental Health Professional.