(a) Persons Not Considered by Promotion Boards Due to Administrative Error.–(1) If the Secretary of the military department concerned determines that because of administrative error a person who should have been considered for selection for promotion from in or above the promotion zone by a promotion board was not so considered, the Secretary shall convene a special selection board under this subsection to determine whether that person (whether or not then on active duty) should be recommended for promotion.

Terms Used In 10 USC 628

  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
  • officer: includes any person authorized by law to perform the duties of the office. See
  • Remand: When an appellate court sends a case back to a lower court for further proceedings.

(2) A special selection board convened under paragraph (1) shall consider the record of the person whose name was referred to it for consideration as that record would have appeared to the board that should have considered him. That record shall be compared with a sampling of the records of those officers of the same competitive category who were recommended for promotion, and those officers who were not recommended for promotion, by the board that should have considered him.

(3) If a special selection board convened under paragraph (1) does not recommend for promotion a person whose name was referred to it for consideration for selection for appointment to a grade other than a general officer or flag officer grade, the person shall be considered to have failed of selection for promotion.

(b) Persons Considered by Promotion Boards in Unfair Manner.–(1) If the Secretary of the military department concerned determines, in the case of a person who was considered for selection for promotion by a promotion board but was not selected, that there was material unfairness with respect to that person, the Secretary may convene a special selection board under this subsection to determine whether that person (whether or not then on active duty) should be recommended for promotion. In order to determine that there was material unfairness, the Secretary must determine that–

(A) the action of the promotion board that considered the person was contrary to law in a matter material to the decision of the board or involved material error of fact or material administrative error; or

(B) the board did not have before it for its consideration material information.


(2) A special selection board convened under paragraph (1) shall consider the record of the person whose name was referred to it for consideration as that record, if corrected, would have appeared to the board that considered him. That record shall be compared with the records of a sampling of those officers of the same competitive category who were recommended for promotion, and those officers who were not recommended for promotion, by the board that considered him.

(3) If a special selection board convened under paragraph (1) does not recommend for promotion a person whose name was referred to it for consideration, the person incurs no additional failure of selection for promotion.

(c) Reports of Boards.–(1) Each special selection board convened under this section shall submit to the Secretary of the military department concerned a written report, signed by each member of the board, containing the name of each person it recommends for promotion and certifying that the board has carefully considered the record of each person whose name was referred to it.

(2) The provisions of sections 617(b) and 618 of this title apply to the report and proceedings of a special selection board convened under this section in the same manner as they apply to the report and proceedings of a selection board convened under section 611(a) of this title. However, in the case of a board convened under this section to consider a warrant officer or former warrant officer, the provisions of sections 576(d), 576(f), and 613a of this title (rather than the provisions of sections 617(b) and 618 of this title) apply to the report and proceedings of the board in the same manner as they apply to the report and proceedings of a selection board convened under section 573 of this title.

(d) Appointment of Persons Selected by Boards.–(1) If the report of a special selection board convened under this section, as approved by the President, recommends for promotion to the next higher grade a person whose name was referred to it for consideration, that person shall, as soon as practicable, be appointed to that grade in accordance with subsections (b), (c), and (d) of section 624 of this title. However, in the case of a board convened under this section to consider a warrant officer or former warrant officer, if the report of that board, as approved by the Secretary concerned, recommends that warrant officer or former warrant officer for promotion to the next higher grade, that person shall, as soon as practicable, be appointed to the next higher grade in accordance with provisions of section 578(c) of this title (rather than subsections (b), (c), and (d) of section 624 of this title).

(2) A person who is appointed to the next higher grade as the result of the recommendation of a special selection board convened under this section shall, upon that appointment, have the same date of rank, the same effective date for the pay and allowances of that grade, and the same position on the active-duty list as he would have had if he had been recommended for promotion to that grade by the board which should have considered, or which did consider, him. In the case of a person who is not on the active-duty list when appointed to the next higher grade, placement of that person on the active-duty list pursuant to the preceding sentence shall be only for purposes of determination of eligibility of that person for consideration for promotion by any subsequent special selection board under this section.

(e) Deceased Persons.–If a person whose name is being considered for referral to a special selection board under this section dies before the completion of proceedings under this section with respect to that person, this section shall be applied to that person posthumously.

(f) Convening of Boards.–A board convened under this section–

(1) shall be convened under regulations prescribed by the Secretary of Defense;

(2) shall be composed in accordance with section 612 of this title or, in the case of board to consider a warrant officer or former warrant officer, in accordance with section 573 of this title and regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the military department concerned; and

(3) shall be subject to the provisions of section 613 of this title.


(g) Judicial Review.–(1)(A) A court of the United States may review a determination by the Secretary of a military department under subsection (a)(1) or (b)(1) not to convene a special selection board in the case of any person. In any such case, the court may set aside the Secretary’s determination only if the court finds the determination to be–

(i) arbitrary or capricious;

(ii) not based on substantial evidence;

(iii) a result of material error of fact or material administrative error; or

(iv) otherwise contrary to law.


(B) If a court sets aside a determination by the Secretary of a military department not to convene a special selection board under this section, it shall remand the case to the Secretary concerned, who shall provide for consideration by such a board.

(2) A court of the United States may review the action of a special selection board convened under this section or an action of the Secretary of the military department concerned on the report of such a board. In any such case, a court may set aside the action only if the court finds that the action was–

(A) arbitrary or capricious;

(B) not based on substantial evidence;

(C) a result of material error of fact or material administrative error; or

(D) otherwise contrary to law.


(3)(A) If, six months after receiving a complete application for consideration by a special selection board under this section in any case, the Secretary concerned has not convened such a board and has not denied consideration by such a board in that case, the Secretary shall be deemed for the purposes of this subsection to have denied the consideration of the case by such a board.

(B) If, six months after the convening of a special selection board under this section in any case, the Secretary concerned has not taken final action on the report of the board, the Secretary shall be deemed for the purposes of this subsection to have denied relief in such case.

(C) Under regulations prescribed under subsection (j), the Secretary of a military department may waive the applicability of subparagraph (A) or (B) in a case if the Secretary determines that a longer period for consideration of the case is warranted. Such a waiver may be for an additional period of not more than six months. The Secretary concerned may not delegate authority to make a determination under this subparagraph.

(h) Limitations of Other Jurisdiction.–No official or court of the United States may, with respect to a claim based to any extent on the failure of a person to be selected for promotion by a promotion board–

(1) consider the claim unless the person has first been referred by the Secretary concerned to a special selection board convened under this section and acted upon by that board and the report of the board has been approved by the President; or

(2) except as provided in subsection (g), grant any relief on the claim unless the person has been selected for promotion by a special selection board convened under this section to consider the person for recommendation for promotion and the report of the board has been approved by the President.


(i) Existing Jurisdiction.–Nothing in this section limits–

(1) the jurisdiction of any court of the United States under any provision of law to determine the validity of any law, regulation, or policy relating to selection boards; or

(2) the authority of the Secretary of a military department to correct a military record under section 1552 of this title.


(j) Regulations.–(1) The Secretary of each military department shall prescribe regulations to carry out this section. Regulations under this subsection may not apply to subsection (g), other than to paragraph (3)(C) of that subsection.

(2) The Secretary may prescribe in the regulations under paragraph (1) the circumstances under which consideration by a special selection board may be provided for under this section, including the following:

(A) The circumstances under which consideration of a person’s case by a special selection board is contingent upon application by or for that person.

(B) Any time limits applicable to the filing of an application for such consideration.


(3) Regulations prescribed by the Secretary of a military department under this subsection may not take effect until approved by the Secretary of Defense.

(k) Promotion Board Defined.–In this section, the term “promotion board” means a selection board convened by the Secretary of a military department under section 573(a) or 611(a) of this title.