How can I check an employee's military record?
June 13, 2014 9:08 PM   Subscribe

Thinking of hiring someone. His resume says he's been a Navy SEAL. Is there any way to check whether this is true?
posted by htid to Work & Money (9 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
You can ask to see his DD 214, which are his military discharge papers. These should include whether he was honorably discharged or not, how long he was in, as well as any awards he received. I do not know, but think that it would not, include specifically whether he was a SEAL.
posted by Night_owl at 9:14 PM on June 13, 2014 [2 favorites]

Some information here about verifying claims of prior service, with a section specifically on people claiming to be SEALs.

Much, much less rigorous method: unless you're hiring for a position where prior service is considered relevant experience, most people who tell you they were SEALs are lying. BUD/S graduates about 250 people a year, and I'm told that most of them are actually quiet, humble guys who don't talk about their service out of context.
posted by d. z. wang at 9:26 PM on June 13, 2014 [14 favorites]

I've been told that a quick and dirty method is to ask the ex-SEAL what his graduating class number was. And, further, I've been told that a valid one will be a three digit number. If true, that will help you narrow it down, although this info is probably very hard to verify.

Then, as others have mentioned, ask for a copy of the DD-214. Or, if you have a friend who is a runner, ask the ex-SEAL to go on a 10 mile run with your runner friend. If he makes it through the 10 miles, but is sweating, he's probably not an ex-SEAL.

SEALs are super human compared to average people.
posted by InsertNiftyNameHere at 11:32 PM on June 13, 2014 [3 favorites]

Ask him for his BUDS class number and team number. This yahoo answers response (yeah, I know, yahoo answers) gives some specific detail of matching BUDS class numbers with training year.

You can contact NavPersCom (Navy Personnel Command), formerly known has BuPers, the Bureau of Personnel. IT's the Navy's HR department. From the "How Do I?" page:
... verify employment?
Contact the NPC Customer Service Center at (866) 827-5672.

In my reading, I saw an assertion that the Navy believes there are about 300 lying claimants for every genuine SEAL. hmm. But of course there are real SEALs, hundreds of them. If you have one of them, you've got a good team-player on your hands.
posted by Sunburnt at 11:44 PM on June 13, 2014

Per above, ask for his DD-214. If he can't produce it for any reason within a day or two, he's lying. If he says his 214 doesn't include his time doing super secret SEAL missions, he's lying.
posted by Etrigan at 5:56 AM on June 14, 2014 [3 favorites]

This guy is smart enough to know his BUD/S class number and team number, and to have that be a reasonable estimate based on his age. I'll give NavPersCom a try...
posted by htid at 7:35 AM on June 14, 2014

Anything too secret to be on the DD-214 is too secret to talk about.
posted by theora55 at 1:56 PM on June 15, 2014

Anything too secret to be on the DD-214 is too secret to talk about.

Just being a SEAL is not too secret to be on a DD-214. Even being on a SEAL Team is not too secret to be on a DD-214. Even things that someone did as a SEAL are acknowledged. I have personally written award recommendations and evaluations that have classified annexes, but those documents still exist (the usual wording is "For services rendered to the United States").

People who say "I was a SEAL / Green Beret / Ranger, but it was so super-secret that they listed it as 'Supply Clerk, Fort Bliss'" (even in the old days when it was "Special Warfare Development Group," SEALs weren't given "fake" assignments) or "I have a Medal of Honor, but it's classified, so it's not on my 214" are lying.
posted by Etrigan at 2:17 PM on June 15, 2014

I verified through the website Extreme SEAL Experience and it worked for $20. They gave me details of employment too. FYI I called the BUPERs number and they couldn't help me without a social security number.

Thanks for the tips!
posted by htid at 7:24 AM on June 30, 2014

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