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a. Authorization. Special Order No. 49 of 20 July 1896 established the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) to recognize good behavior and faithful service in the Marine Corps. The CMC has review authority over the MCGCM and designates specific criteria for the award.

b. Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal Eligibility Requirements

(1) Service

(a) Any three years of continuous active service after 10 December 1945, regardless of expiration or extension of enlistments and any previous or subsequent disciplinary action, except as indicated in subparagraph (b) for enlisted personnel, Regular or Reserve, including service in temporary warrant or temporary commissioned status, provided such temporary officer reverts to enlisted status. Also, if reenlisted within a period of 90 days from date of discharge, it will not be construed as an interruption of continuous service, but the period between discharge and reenlistment will not be counted.

(b) Individual Ready Reservists, mobilized for three continuous years, may elect the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) in lieu of continuing their eligibility for the Selected Marine Corps Reserve Medal. Administrative units should make an appropriate entry in the Marine's official military record (OMPF), which indicates the Marine was mobilized under Title 10, specifies the dates of the mobilization period, and that the Marine elected to receive the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) for the period of active duty. A copy of the Marine's orders and the award certificate should be filed in the Marine's OMPF for historical purposes.

(c) Provided the individual is otherwise qualified, an Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) shall be authorized for any three years of enlisted service consisting of a combination of periods of active service in a war, national emergency, or armed hostilities in which the United States is engaged. When the first period of such service terminated prior to 10 December 1945, a total of four years of enlisted service is required. In establishing eligibility for the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) under this paragraph, service performed during World War 11, Korea, and Vietnam will not be creditable unless entry or reentry to active service occurred during the inclusive periods 8 September 1939 to 31 December 1946; 27 June 1950 to 27 July 1954; and/or 3 July 1965 to 30 September 1975.

(d) For the first award only, the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) may be awarded, provided conduct requirements are met, to the next of kin in cases when a service member is killed in combat against an opposing armed force, or dies as a direct result of wounds received in combat against an opposing armed force, or dies in the line of duty when such death was directly related to actions against the enemy. In addition, for the first award only, the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) is authorized for individuals who are separated from the Naval Service for physical disability, as a result of wounds incurred in combat against an opposing armed force, or in the line of duty when such wounds resulted directly from action against the enemy, provided conduct requirements are met. For the first award only, the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) may be presented posthumously to the next of kin of POWs if the service member's death occurs while in a POW status, provided it has been determined the individual's conduct while a POW was acceptable.

(e) The three-year requirement for the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) may be waived upon a Marine's completion of Officer Candidate School (OCS), as long as the period waived does not exceed 90 days. Upon completion of OCS, requests for waiver of the three-year requirement shall be submitted to CMC (MMMA) for consideration.

(2) Conduct

(a) The Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) shall be earned for otherwise qualifying service, involving no convictions by courts-martial or non-judicial punishment (NJP) under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, Article 15, and no lost time by reason of sickness-misconduct or injury-misconduct. Prior to 27 April 1990, not more than one NJP was allowed.

(b) When NJP or a court-martial voids creditability of service, a new good conduct period shall commence effective on the date of approval of the NJP, or on the date of the convening authority's action on the court-martial, except when the offense occurred within the three-year period and the date of approval of the NJP or of the convening authority's action is after the expiration of the three-year period; under these circumstances, the date of the offense shall be the commencement date for the new period. Offenses committed in a previous period will not be considered when determining eligibility during the current three-year period.

(c) When sentenced to confinement as a result of conviction by any court-martial, a new period shall begin with the date of restoration to duty, even though in a probationary status. The date of approval by the convening authority on all courts-martial, not involving confinement, shall be the new commencement date. (See also Individual Records Administration Manual (IRAM) Para. 4008, MCO P1070.12K. )

(d) In cases of time lost due to sickness-misconduct or injury-misconduct, the date of return to duty shall be the new commencement date for Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) qualifying service.

(e) In the case of individuals placed on the Temporary Disability Retired List (TDRL) who subsequently return to active duty, the period spent on the TDRL does not count as a break in service, nor does it count as active service for computing eligibility for the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM).

(f) When the foregoing requirements have been met, but it is evident the individual is not deserving of the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal (MCGCM) due to a repeated record of valid letters of indebtedness, conviction(s) by civil court for major offense(s), or other acts not in keeping with the high moral standards of the Marine Corps, the commanding officer will make the appropriate recommendation to CMC (MMMA) stating the reasons.

c. Certificates. A Good Conduct Award Certificate (NAVMC-11416(11-02)) will be completed by the commanding officer at the time entitlement is confirmed for presentation to the member.

Authorized Devices: Bronze Star, Silver Star
 
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