Q: How do I join The American Legion?
A: Check to see if you are eligible, complete an application, or contact an American Legion Post.
Q: How do I know if I’m eligible for membership in The American Legion?
A: Our organization was founded on the premise that all those who served in the U.S. armed forces during times of national crisis, regardless of the place of service, are eligible to belong to The American Legion. Our membership is based on period of service, not place of service. Therefore, if you have served at least one day of active duty during the eligibility dates and are still serving in the military after any of the said periods or have been honorably discharged, you may become a member.
Q: Why is membership in The American Legion limited to certain periods of time? I served in the military, but not during The American Legion eligibility periods.
A: The American Legion was founded in 1919 as a war-time veterans organization. It was chartered by Congress on this basis. Our membership eligibility dates parallel dates set by Congress for war-time service.
Q: Can a veteran of the National Guard or Reserves join The American Legion?
A: The National Guard and Reserves are required to meet the same eligibility requirements as the full-time federal active veterans. To be eligible, they must have served at least one day on federal active duty during any of the above delimiting periods. The key to determining if a Guardsman/Reservist has been on or currently serving on federal active duty is the “Authority Line” on the activation orders of the Guardsman/Reservist. In both cases, “Title 10, Subsection 672 or 12301” are orders from the Secretary of Defense and are federal orders qualifying the Guardsman/Reservist for membership in The American Legion.
Q: What benefits do I receive as a member of The American Legion?
A: As a member, you may participate in the low-cost life insurance program, as well as many other discounts on moving, car rentals, hotels and motels, eyewear, and prescription drugs.
Q: How can I request a copy of my military records for proof of eligibility?
A: To obtain a copy of your military records, you need to complete Standard Form 180. This can be done online or by mail. Standard Form 180 and instructions can be found at the National Archives web page.