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WHO MUST REGISTER print this form using Adobe Acrobat Reader Printer Friendly Version

Almost all male U.S. citizens, and male immigrants living in the U.S., who are 18 through 25, are required to register with Selective Service. It's important to know that even though he is registered, a man will not automatically be inducted into the military. In a crisis requiring a draft, men would be called in sequence determined by random lottery number and year of birth. Then, they would be examined for mental, physical and moral fitness by the military before being deferred or exempted from military service or inducted into the Armed Forces.

A chart of who must register is also available.

Some non-citizens are required to register. Others are not. Non-citizens who are not required to register with Selective Service include men who are in the U.S. on student or visitor visas, and men who are part of a diplomatic or trade mission and their families. Almost all other male non-citizens are required to register, including undocumented immigrants, legal permanent residents, and refugees. The general rule is that if a male non-citizen takes up residency in the U.S. before his 26th birthday, he must register with Selective Service. For a more detailed list of which non-citizens must register, see Who Must Register - Chart .

Dual nationals of the U.S. and another country are required to register, regardless of where they live, because they are U.S. nationals.
See also Immigrants and Dual Nationals - Liability for Service

Young men in hospitals, mental institutions, or prisons do not have to register while they are committed. However, they must register within 30 days after being released if they have not yet reached their 26th birthday.

Disabled men who live at home must register with Selective Service if they can reasonably leave their homes and move about independently. A friend or relative may help a disabled man fill out the registration form if he can't do it himself.

Men with disabilities that would disqualify them from military service still must register with Selective Service. Selective Service does not presently have authority to classify men, so even men with obvious handicaps must register now, and if needed, classifications would be determined later.

Young men serving in the military on full-time active duty do not have to register. Those attending the service academies do not have to register. However, if a young man leaves the military before turning 26, he must register.


Members of the Reserve and National Guard not on full-time active duty must register.


Men who would be classified as Conscientious Objectors if they were drafted must also register with Selective Service. If a draft begins and they are called, they would have the opportunity to file a claim for exemption from military service based upon their religious or moral objection to war.



Individuals who are born female and have a sex change are not required to register. U.S. citizens or immigrants who are born male and have a sex change are still required to register.


*NOTE:  If a man failed to register with Selective Service, Section 12(g) of the Military Selective Service Act allows non-registrants to receive benefits under specific conditions. As a veteran, or part-time National Guard or Reservist, the man satisfies those conditions with his DD Form 214 showing the dates of his military service, or a current military ID card if still on active duty or a member of the National Guard and Reserves. These documents serve as evidence that the man's failure to register was not knowing and willful. Therefore, men who served on full-time active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces should not be denied student financial aid, loans, or grants; vocational training under WIA; government employment; and security clearances, on the basis of their failure to register with Selective Service. As long as the man has proof of his active duty military service, such as his DD 214, or current military ID card if still on active duty or a member of the National Guard or Reserves, his subsequent failure to register should not be a bar to any benefits or programs, contingent upon registration compliance, for which he is otherwise qualified.

Register with Selective Service clickable link


Last Updated April 24, 2014
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