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If you were recruited to the USMC but your recruiter had you lie on your contract to get in does that make the contract void?

Havelock, NC |

I decided to join the USMC and I wasn't eligible to join because of asthma. But my recruiter had me lie about my medical records to get me in. Now that I'm in and realized I made a huge mistake does that lie make my contract void? And if it does will anyone get in trouble? Would I go to jail for lying? Or would it be my recruiters fault for having me lie?

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Attorney answers 4

Best Answer
Posted

Your recruiter made you lie? How? Did the recruiter use a weapon or threat of violence to intimidate you?

Recommend you reconsider your actual situation--you failed to report asthma as a pre-existing health condition.
I don't challenge your statement that your recruiter encouraged it--that was definitely WRONG and a violation of the UCMJ on part of your recruiter. It should definitely be reported to the Marine Corps. However, unless you were coerced by threat of violence or harm, you are the one who had the last clear chance to get it right--and you failed to do so.

YOU are ultimately responsible, not the recruiter.

YOU signed documents bearing to the truth of your representations.

YOU were questioned by MEPS personnel, outside of the presence of your recruiter and you lied to them.

YOU were questioned again at Paris Island—and you lied.

That being said, depending on where you are in the process--you might be able to get an entry level separation (if you are still in boot camp). It’s possible you could be processed for a fraudulent enlistment. You would likely not go to jail, but you might receive a discharge lower than Honorable--that could impact your future employment and other benefits for years to come..

Unfortunately, an asthma condition could lead to a life threatening situation under the right circumstances (in gas mask, CBR suit, decompression chamber, combat etc.) and it’s nothing to ignore.

Now is your chance to right what has been wrong—YOU must reveal to the Marine Corps your preexisting asthma condition, even if it means an Art 15 and administrative processing—the stakes are high.
Finally, I advise you to speak with a JAG at the base legal services office B E F O R E you speak to your chain of command or the Navy docs. With that JAG, determine what outcomes you can expect and what options you have to report your recruiter.

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Asker

Posted

I'm not in boot camp anymore but while I was at my MOS school I did ask for an entry level separation and failure to adapt and they wouldn't give it to me. Even though the lifestyle of the Military was causing me mental damage with anxiety and depression. I went to JAG and they said they couldn't do anything for me. Plain and simple I want out of the Marine Corps. But I don't want to get out with a dishonorable or anything that will hurt my future. I know I signed a contract and I'm suppose to fulfill that contract but I don't if I'm capable of doing that. I need options and I'm tired of getting no options. There has to be something. There is always a way out of a contract.

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Posted

True there is always a way out----but sometimes the way out is more painful than simply performing on the contract. The government does not just 'release' someone who has accepted pay, benefits, training in return for a promise to serve. If you truly have asthma, speak to a JAG like I recommended, then report the condition to the Docs. Sounds like you might be processed under a fraudulent enlistment--not worth the trouble if your making up the asthma condition.

Asker

Posted

No I really do but I really don't want to get kicked out with a fraudulent enlistment. 3 more years of this S@%t just doesn't seem worth it. I've already seen two suicides and a lot of attempted ones. But if the contract is the way out then I guess I'll see the contract through. Thanks for the advice

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Posted

Talk to the JAG before you give up. Also, I can't count how many people I have spoken with over the years who said they couldn't wait to get out and realized years later it was the time of their life--they just didn't' get it' at the time. Let your CoC know where your head is--they MAY help.

Asker

Posted

I do although have one more question... I recently just had surgery for a pilonidal cyst. I'm still waiting for it to heal completely but I still have trouble bending over to pick things up or to stretch down as if to touch my toes. I can only get my hands down to just above my knees. If I need to pick something up I have to squat. My back is in constant pain but I'm not sure if it's due to the surgery or if it's still because of that cyst. I found out I had it because of back pain. If my back doesn't get better what do I do?

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Rixon Charles Rafter III

Posted

See the doctors.

Posted

You definitely need to go to your JAG office right away. Time is ticking if you want to try and get and ELS.

Posted

Attorney Rafter is 100% correct. YOU are the one that lied, not the recruiter even though the recruiter may have encouraged you to do so. As such, you may now be subject to UCMJ action or a less than honorable discharge for fraudulent enlistment. I encourage you to discuss your situation with a judge advocate, however, not all judge advocates are the same. Make sure whoever you discuss it with is in a criminal defense role to ensure confidentiality.

Law Office of Stephen P. Kelly (508) 983-1479--Criminal Defense, Military Law, Divorce & Family Law, Appeals. DISCLAIMER: Answers to posted questions are for general interest only and do not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is established by virtue of any answer posted by the attorney.

William Emil Cassara

William Emil Cassara

Posted

I agree with those above. The bottom line is you have no way of proving that your recruiter encouraged you to lie and, even if he were to admit it (which he won't) you are the one who lied, not him. Speak to the NILSO or TDS office on base. Speak to a defense lawyer. Do not speak to anyone else.

Posted

I know I am risking everyone getting angry with me but, I think you need to take a deep breath. Ok, you did something very wrong. But, you don't have to "tell on yourself.". Should you tell on yourself is another question. When we're you diagnosed with asthma? Was it a childhood issue that you have not had an issue with. It seems like your reason for getting out may not be tied to the asthma? No one ever has to confess to anything. If you say you lied it is highly likely you will get into trouble. So, just think and consult a defense attorney or a legal assistance attorney. I know the Marines are honorable, from that perspective, this is a tough situation. But, as a citizen - no one has to say "I lied.". I just did not want you to be confused. Otherwise, I agree with the other attorneys' advice.

This advice is generic and not designed to substitute for consulting an attorney. Nothing in this response is designed to establish an attorney-client relationship with the requester.

Crystina Marie O'Brien

Crystina Marie O'Brien

Posted

I wrote this a bit too quickly. I was wondering how serious your asthma is a and whether you even had an adult diagnosis. There are some children who really do outgrow it. I have issues, but I did the gas chamber fine and never had any problems. I was not diagnosed with asthma though...until later and only allergy induced. It did not effect my service.