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Military ID Cards



Military ID Cards

Including DoD & DEERS


The Military ID card is an essential part of accessing your benefits, without it you may not be able to get on base, go to the commissary, child care, or get health care. As a spouse of an active duty military personnel you should be receiving a "Packet" which will have forms that need to be filled out in order for you to receive the Dependent ID Cards for yourself and children.

ID Cards

The Department of Defense issues eligible dependents and other eligible individuals a distinct identification card (ID) authorizing them to receive Uniformed Services benefits and privileges. Active duty family members and military retirees and their dependents receive a tan colored ID Card (DD Form 1173). The tan ID cards authorize access to commissary exchange and certain morale, welfare and recreation privileges.

Minors that are 10 (ten) years old are required to receive their own ID.

Guard and Reserve Dependent ID Cards

Normally, RC family members and other dependents receive a DD Form 1173-1, the DoD Guard and Reserve Dependent ID Card (red). These cards do not authorize eligibility for medical benefits and commissary privileges in and of themselves. They will assist family members in accessing these privileges when accompanied by a copy of the service member's orders to active duty or a commissary privilege card. The cards do authorize access to exchange and certain morale, welfare and recreation privileges.

The red ID Card (DD Form 1173-1) serves as proof that individuals have been pre-enrolled in the Defense Eligibility Enrollment System (DEERS). This is an important first step in obtaining family member and dependent medical treatment when the service member is called to active duty for 31 consecutive days or more.

When the RC service member is called to active duty for more than 30 days, part of the processing for entry on active duty should be the completion of DD Form 1172 (Application for Uniformed Services Identification Card). This application, along with the DD Form 1173-1, will allow family members and dependents to receive the DD Form 1173 (tan). These cards will authorize appropriate medical, commissary, exchange and MWR benefits and privileges for the period of active duty specified on the member's orders.

The DoD uses a system referred to as the Real Time Automated Personnel Identification System (RAPIDS) to issue ID Cards. Family members and eligible dependents are required to report to a RAPIDS ID Card issuing site in order to be issued the appropriate ID card. Since not all military installations have the ability to use RAPIDS you may need to ask your command or unit administration office for a list of ID Card issuing locations in your area or visit the RAPIDS Site Locator online.

You can also call DEERS to see if they can help you. Their phone number is: 1-800-538-9552.

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