No matter what you do after service, chances are very good that you will need your DD214. The DD214 is needed to file for disability, or to receive a Veteran license plate. However, if you have lost or misplaced your DD214, there are several ways to get a duplicate copy.
How to get your DD214
The easiest and quickest way to get a copy of your DD214 is with a DS Logon. All veterans are eligible for an account. A single username and password gives a Veteran access to their medical records, military personnel records, and My Healthe Vet. For our purposes, MilConnect allows a Veteran to download a digital copy of their OMPF (Official Military Personnel File) including their DD214.
2. VA Database
If you are a Veteran and are already receiving some type of compensation from the VA, then most likely your DD214 is in the VBMS database. Contact your local Veteran Service Office and ask if there is someone with access to VBMS who can print a copy of your DD214. However, remember that not all VSO offices may be able to do so.
Your Local VSO
If you have filed a claim through your local Veteran Service Officer, then most likely they will have a digital copy of your DD214 on file and can print it.
4. National Archives
If none of the above methods will work, you can order a copy of your DD214 from the National Archives. However, be aware that it can easily take 2-3 months before you receive your records. During the pandemic it may take much longer so be prepared to wait.
5. Your Local Courthouse
Veterans used to be advised to file a copy of their DD214 with their local County Clerk. If you are one of the Veterans who did this, you may be able to go to your County Clerk and get a copy
There you have it, five methods of locating a copy of your DD214 if you do not have one. The quickest method would be with a DS Logon through the MilConnect portal. The other way that is relative certain is through the National Archives, although that is also the slowest route. However you choose to go about it, my one piece of advice is to get a copy NOW, so you will have it when you really need it.