Cover Photo- My Selective Service Card From 1988- Don't Know Why I Have Two Cards

Selective Service is a requirement that most males, when turning the age of 18 must register for the compulsory military service draft. In other words, if we go to war the federal government can call up you to fight for the United States of America. This registration remains until the age of 26.

Five jets
Svetl. Tebenkova

Who is required to register with selective service (information gathered from

  • Almost all male US citizens and male immigrants, who are 18 through 25
  • Immigrants & Dual Nationals
  • US Territory Residents
  • Disabled Men
  • Men in the Armed Forces (if not active duty)
  • Conscientious Objectors
  • Transgender People (a man transitioning to a woman)

Transgender is a new category that was added in this century, even though the first transgender person to serve was in WWII (it was unknown at the time)

US military concept on olive green uniform background

Who doesn't have to register (information gathered from grown and flown)

  • Women
  • Any male resident above the age of 26
  • Residents of American Samoa who have never lived in the US
  • Active duty military personnel
  • Hospitalized, incarcerated, or imprisoned men (though they must apply within 30 days of release)
  • US residents on student or visitor visas
  • Individuals living in the US as part of a diplomatic or trade mission
  • Individuals who are born female and choose to realign as men

It has been discussed that women should be required to register- what are your thoughts

close up of dog tags on American flag

Failure to register can create several issues

  • Failure to register is a felony
  • You can be fined
  • You can be sent to prison
  •  You can be denied federal benefits- including losing your (federal) job if it is discovered you didn't register

The process is easy and the chances of being drafted are very low!


How to register

The simplest way is to do it (click here -->) online. You can also download a paper application by clicking here --> Application The address to mail it in, is on the form.  When I turned 18 the form was available at any post office.


Whether you are for or against fighting for your country, registering for selective service is the law. The odds of you being drafted are very low.  The last man drafted was on June 30th, 1973. and it was for the Vietnam War.

If you have a story idea or something you want to learn more about, give Randy a call at 406-788-3003 or send me an email at

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