UCMJ – United States Code of Military Justice

886. ARTICLE 86. ABSENCE WITHOUT LEAVE

10. Punitive Articles

Any member of the armed forces who, without authority–

(1) fails to go to his appointed place of duty at the time prescribed;

(2) goes from that place; or

(3) absents himself or remains absent from his unit, organization, or place of duty at which he is required to be at the time prescribed;

shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.


22 Comments for this entry

  • SFC Patty Bradley

    Is there a 24 hour absentee requirement that must be met before this article can be applied to a solider?

    • Dave

      There is Not a 24 hour adsentee requirement that needs to be met before a person is AWOL in the Army, Navy, Marines, or Air Force. If a service member is assigned to be somewhere at 1400 and is there at 1401 he can be charged with this it doesn’t happen for the most part but it can. That is why most commands do the 15 minutes before rule.

    • CPLmutt

      no, but i guess that’s why you’re army strong, the obvious doesn’t stand out to individuals

  • Ryan

    In the Navy are medical appointments considered to be an appointed place of duty. If so is there an instruction that states such.

  • Dave

    Yes in the Navy a medical appointment is a appointed place of duty. It is up to the Sailors unit as to charging them UA.

  • Nguyen

    Almost, there is a 24hr rule only coding on a 4187 that places a person from Failure to Report(FTR) to Absent with out leave (AWOL). so you can get an Art 15 for FTR but mostly like to have 3 or more to make it solid incase he turns down for Court Martial for only 1 FTR.

  • MSgt David Rose

    According to the actual verbiage in the Manual for Courts Martial, “Unauthorized absence under Article 86(3) is an instantaneous offense. It is complete at the instant an accused absents himself or herself without authority.” So there is not 24 hour window. If the member is appointed a place to be, and they are not there, they are AWOL.

  • CPT Harris

    All, there is a 24 hour absentee rule it is in the procedures used when establishing a Soldier AWOL. Please understand AWOL is not just a term but a change of status that affects pay and benefits, this is why the procedures clearly state that a Soldier must be an absentee for 24 hours in addition to the following the procedures stipulated in AR 630-10 (4-4). An investigation must be conducted. You can’t determine someone is AWOL without knowing the facts. Once again AWOL is not just a term it is a status change that affects pay and benefits.

  • Dat Guy

    Please dont confuse Absent from the rolls with Dropped from Rolls with AWOL. Your AWOL if supervisor says to be at your desk at 0900 and your not there your AWOL, If your not there in 24 hours your Absent from the rolls (AFR), If your not there in 30 days your Dropped From Rolls (DFR). If you require a special clearance and work at a job that requires that clearance and your are not at your desk at 0900 your are on aggravated AWOL. Which turns into the government actively looking for you. They turn off your passport, banking, put a BOLO (be on the look out for) on your Drivers license and vehicle, and notify all national borders about you.

  • Hadden Garvin

    I am a military retiree who is also retired as a teacher in the civilian sector. I am currently disputing the retirement board for teachers as concerns service credit for military service.

    Can anybody tell me the statute in the UCMJ that deals with lawful written orders to report for active duty for National Guard and Reserve personnel and what could happen if someone fails to report for duty as ordered?

    Thanks in advance.

  • Jacee

    If somebody went awol 9 months ago and was picked up and took back to camp Pendleton and is now in the Brig. How long will that person have to stay there?

  • Jeremy

    Is there any regulation or article that says we have to be 10 mins prior to any formation? Or is this just a leaders directive that’s in charge of a platoon

  • James

    Does this apply when there is an event and you are notified. Also does it apply that you find out that others where being told about it but no one informed you.

  • Steve Lofquist

    There is a 72 hour rule for AWOL

  • Sgt Robert James

    There is not a good answer based on the information you have given. Guidance is available in the Manual of Courts-Martial, but the variables are huge. If an Art. 32 has defined pre-trial confinement, that time can be applied as time served. There are limits placed based on what type of court-martial is determined. Mitigating circumstances can also be applied.

  • Bill

    If a Soldier is placed on quarters for 72 hrs, provided the proper documentation to the chain of command, can the Soldier be charged for AWOL if the Soldier does the quarters in a different location other than his duty location. IAW AR 600-8-10, it does not specify where the quarters are to be conducted, only that the Soldier has to be in quarters. The location is within the leaves and pass policy of the command.

  • Brad

    Can a soldier be considered and/or charged with being AWOL (by Article 15) if the soldier was incarcerated at the time he was supposed to have report for duty? This soldier subsequently contacted the unit upon his release from incarceration.

  • JLC

    Read U.S. v. Irving – length of absence is relevant to punishment, not the violation itself.

  • Joseph

    I had medical excuse to stay in bed had 104 temp. Called in to the co’s office to let them know. I was told to come in and it was 35 min past start of duty and I was in violation article 86 unauthorized absence,violation article 92 failure to obey a lawful order by Co,pay $125 and reduction in rank to E-1.
    Was this Lawfull?

  • Charles

    Is it still considered FTR if you were working at the time of your appointment?

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