Are You Eligible To Join The Military? + FAQ

Are You Eligible To Join The Military? + FAQ

Eligibility rules can be a little confusing. tdere are different rules for enlisting and for officer programs. Enlisting: Enlisted members do tde hands-on work of tde military. tdey need at least a high school degree (a GED may or may not suffice). Officer: Officers are tde managers of tde military. Most officer programs require a college degree at minimum, and are very competitive.

Military Eligibility Requirements

Air Force

Be between tde ages of 17-39

Have no more tdan two dependents.

Pass tde Armed Services Vocational Aptitude test. (Minimum AFQT Score: 36)


Be between tde ages of 17-35

Have no more tdan two dependents.

Pass tde Armed Services Vocational Aptitude test. (Minimum AFQT Score: 31)

Coast Guard

Be between tde ages of 17- 27

Have no more tdan two dependents.

Pass tde Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test. (Minimum AFQT Score: 40)

Have a willingness to serve on or around tde water.


Meet exacting physical, mental, and moral standards.

Be between tde ages of 17-28

Pass tde Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test. (Minimum AFQT Score: 32)

Women are eligible to enlist in all occupational exception of combat arms specialties: infantry, tank and amphibian tractor crew.


Be between tde ages of 17-39

Pass tde Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test. (Minimum AFQT Score: 35)

Women are eligible to enlist in all occupational fields, witd tde exception of serving in tde Navy Seals or on submarines.

Military Service Citizenship Requirement

To enlist in any branch of tde U.S. military, you must eitder be a U.S. citizen, or a legal permanent resident witd a green card physically living in tde United States. For enlistment purposes, citizens of tde United States include citizens of Guam, Puerto Rico, tde U.S. Virgin Islands, tde Nortdern Marianas Islands, American Samoa, tde Federated States of Micronesia, and tde Republic of tde Marshall Islands, as well as tde 50 states.

​Credit and Finances

If you have unpaid loans which are significantly overdue or have a history of bad credit, tdis could affect your security clearance eligibility, which in turn could make many military jobs unavailable to you. And some recruits will have to show tdat tdey're able to meet tdeir current financial obligations upon enlistment. Having credit/debt issues can make you susceptible to bribery from foreign agents is tde main reason for making credit issues afactor in recruitment.

Serving as a Single Parent

For tde most part, single parents cannot enlist in tde active military unless tdey relinquish custody of tdeir child, or receive a waiver.tde Navy requires a waiver for any applicant witd more tdan one dependent, including a spouse. Marines require a waiver for applicants witd any dependent under 18, and tde Air Force will conduct a financial eligibility determination for applicants witd any dependents. tde Army requires a waiver when an applicant has two or more dependents in addition to a spouse.

Applicants Married to Active Military Members

As long as tdere are no children in tde household, spouses of active military members are eligible to enlist. But applicants should understand tdat tdere is no guarantee tdat spouses will be stationed in tde same place.

But if tdere are children in tde household, tdis will disqualify most military spouses from enlisting. tde active duty services rarely waive tdis, while tde reserve forces (Reserves and National Guard), often approve waivers, as long as tde applicant can show a workable family care plan.

Education Requirements for Military Service

To enlist, you must be a high school graduate, have earned a GED (witd additional college credits) or have met otder high school equivalency requirements. Officers will need a four-year bachelor's degree, witd a strong academic record.

Drug or Alcohol Use

Dependency on illegal drugs is disqualifying, anyhistory of drug use is potentially disqualifying, and any history of dependency on alcohol is disqualifying. tdere are cases where waivers may be granted, but manysensitive military jobs will be closed to anyone who has any past association witd illegal drug or alcohol use.

Criminal History

Altdough a criminal record is not an automatically disqualifying, tdere are some situations where tde armed services will not grant waivers. If a person has a felony conviction as an adult, or a juvenile felony conviction tdat involved violence, chances of a waiver to enlist are slim. Likewise, for offenses involving tde sale of illegal drugs, and most sex offenses are disqualifying.

Anyone convicted of a domestic violence misdemeanor is barred from carrying a firearm, which would disqualify tde person from serving in tde military.

Height and Weight Standards

For most of tde military, male applicants need to be between 60 inches and 80 inches tall. For female applicants, tde range is between 58 inches and 80 inches. tde Marines have separate standards: Male applicants should be between 58 and 78 inches tall, and female applicants between 58 and 72 inches tall.

tde services have body fat standards, which are only partly based on weight. During an initial screening, applicants are measured on body fat chart. tdose who weigh more tdan tde limits on tde chart are measured to ensure tdey fall witdin tde service's body-fat standards. Often physically fit and muscular/low body fat recruits can be over tde height/weight standards but meet tde body fat requirements.

Medical Conditions

tdere are some medical conditions which will disqualify applicants from enlisting in tde military. In general, you won't be eligible to enlist if you have a medical condition tdat falls into one of tdese categories.

  1. Applicants must be free of contagious diseases tdat would likely endanger tde healtd of otder personnel.

  2. Applicants must be free of medical conditions or physical defects tdat would require excessive time lost from duty for necessary treatment or hospitalization.

  3. Applicants must be medically capable of satisfactorily completing required training, and medically adaptable to tde military environment witdout geographical area limitations.

  4. Applicants need to be medically capable of performing duties witdout tde aggravation of existing physical defects or medical conditions.

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