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What is the maximum age to enlist in the Military?


Question: What is the maximum age to enlist in the Military?
Answer: The maximum age of non-prior service enlistment, under federal law used to be age 35. In 2006 the Army tried to convinced Congress to change this to age 44. Congress thought age 44 was too high, but raised the maximum enlistment age, under law, from 35 to age 42.

Regardless of federal law, the military services are allowed to impose more strict standards -- and many of them have. The maximum age for non-prior service enlistments for each of the services are:

  • Active duty Army - 42
  • Army Reserves - 42
  • Army Natinal Guard - 42
  • Active duty Air Force - 27
  • Air Force Reserve - 34
  • Air National guard - 34
  • Active duty Navy - 34
  • Navy Reserves - 39
  • Active duty Marines - 28
  • Marine Corps Reserves - 29
  • Active duty Coast Guard - 27
  • Coast Guard Reserves - 27
Age waivers are possible for those with prior military service.

For more information, see our article about U.S. Military Enlistment Standards.

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