ADC - Administrative Demotions


1. This fact sheet gives you information about your rights and recourses when your commander recommends you for demotion. The important thing to do is to make an appointment to see the Area Defense Counsel immediately after you get a letter from your commander notifying you of the recommended demotion action.

2. Administrative demotion of airmen is governed by AFI 36-2503. The demotion procedure involves your commander notifying you she/he intends to recommend your demotion and giving you the opportunity to respond. Your commander's recommendation and your response are sent to the demotion authority who decides if you should be demoted. If the demotion authority decides to demote you, you may appeal his or her decision.

3. Why can your commander recommend demotion? Some reasons for demotion are failure to complete training, failure to fulfill NCO responsibilities, failure to attain or maintain weight, and intentional failure to qualify for duty. Generally the reason for demotion must have occurred in your current enlistment. Your entire military record may be used to determine if you should be demoted. You should also be given a chance at rehabilitation before demotion action is initiated.

4. Your commander must inform you in writing of her/his intention to recommend demotion, the specific reasons, and your rights. You have three duty days to concur or nonconcur with his or her actions.

5. Make an appointment to see the Area Defense Counsel before you make your decision on the demotion. If you nonconcur, you may submit written statements and/or request a personal hearing before your commander. Your commander will review the material you've presented and decide to continue or terminate the action. If your commander goes ahead with the action he/she will prepare a written summary of your personal hearing (if you requested a hearing) and forward the package to the demotion authority.

6. The demotion authority makes the actual decision on whether to demote. The demotion authority for airmen through master sergeants is the special court-martial convening authority. For most bases, this is the wing commander. For senior and chief master sergeants the demotion authority is generally the MAJCOM commander, often a numbered Air Force. The demotion authority must be convinced by a preponderance of the evidence, that is the greater weight of the evidence, you should be demoted. You'll be notified in writing of the demotion authority's decision. You may appeal the demotion decision.

7. Your appeal of the demotion decision must be in writing and submitted to MPF/DPMPP within three duty days of your acknowledgment of the demotion decision. Your file will be sent to the appellate authority for a decision. If you're an airman through master sergeant before demotion, the appellate authority is the general court-martial convening authority, often a numbered Air Force. If you're a senior or chief master sergeant before demotion, the appellate authority is generally HQ USAF, Vice Chief of Staff. You'll be notified in writing of the appellate authority's decision.

8. Like all things, it isn't over, till it's over. Although a commander cannot suspend your demotion, you may be able to get your stripe back. The commander who approved your demotion (or his or her successor in command) may, if considered appropriate, restore you to your original grade. If you've performed in an outstanding manner and have again clearly demonstrated the potential for increased responsibility start preparing a package asking for your stripe back.

9. This fact sheet was designed to inform you about the demotion process. If you should have further questions read AFI 36-2503 and feel free to call the Area Defense Counsel at 781-8355.