Information for Parents and Guardians
Help young men to be aware of their civic responsibilities and to make an informed decision that has future consequences.
There is no draft at present; therefore, no classifying being done. The last man was drafted in 1973, after which the U.S. converted to an all-volunteer military. However, Congress and the President still require men to register and the Selective Service System is kept in a standby status, just in case a future crisis necessitates a return to the draft.
It’s important to know that even though a man is registered, he will not automatically be inducted into the military. In a crisis requiring a draft, men would be called in a sequence determined by random lottery number and year of birth. At that time, 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. They would also be eligible for any deferments, postponements, and exemptions available to all registrants. A man (or his parents/guardian) would have the opportunity, at that time, to provide any necessary documentation needed for exemption.
If Congress and the President were to reinstate the draft, the first lottery (drawn on a specific date) would include 19-year-old men turning 20 that calendar year and all 20-year-old men. If that failed to provide sufficient manpower, then 21-year-old men would be called for induction testing. Then, the next lottery would again be for new 20 year olds. The older a man becomes who has not yet been called to report for induction, the less likely he will be drafted.
Men are considered no longer draft eligible at age 26; for this to change, the United States Congress would have to amend the law.
You may assist your son in registering with the Selective Service System.
By registering, your son remains eligible to take advantage of certain programs and benefits that Congress has linked to a man’s Selective Service registration: student financial aid, federal employment, and job training under the Workforce Investment Act.