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How to Obtain Your COE in the National Guard

In order to use your VA loan benefit as a member of the National Guard, you’ll need to obtain your Certificate of Eligibility (COE).

Published on July 22, 2021

In order to use your VA loan benefit, you’ll need to obtain your Certificate of Eligibility (COE). For members of the six main military branches, this just requires logging into your eBenefits portal and filing a simple request.

For National Guard members, however, the process may be a bit different. Depending on the nature of your service, you may need additional forms or to work with your commander or personnel officer to get the ball rolling.

Are you a Guard Member hoping to apply for a VA loan? Here’s what you’ll need to do to get your COE.

What is a Certificate of Eligibility?

A Certificate of Eligibility shows a lender that you’re eligible for the VA loan benefit. It also breaks down your VA loan entitlement, which will impact how much of your mortgage loan the VA will guarantee.

Getting a VA Certificate of Eligibility in the National Guard

Your COE will come from the Department of Veterans Affairs, but to apply for yours, you’ll need some paperwork proving your service first.

The exact documentation depends on when you served and whether you were called to active duty or not. If you’re a current or former Guard member that was activated and served on active duty, you’ll need your DD-214 form — which indicates your service history, your separation status and other important details. You can request this through the National Personnel Records Center (part of the National Archives).

If you’re a discharged former Guard member who never served on active duty, you’ll need an NGB-22 — your National Guard record of service — for each service period, as well as your NGB-23, which is your annual retirement points statement. To get these, you can contact the National Guard Adjutant General’s Office in your state.

Finally, if you’re a current or former Guard Member who has not been officially discharged, you’ll need a statement of service written and signed by your commander, adjutant or personnel officer. See the chart below for the details that should be included on that form.

National Guard Type

What You’ll Need

Current or former Activated Guard member

DD-214 Form

Current or former Guard members who have never been activated

Statement of service signed by your commander, adjutant or personnel officer showing your:

  • Full name
  • SSN
  • Birthdate
  • The date you entered duty
  • Total number of creditable years of service
  • Duration of any lost time
  • The name of the command providing the information

Discharged Guard member who was never activated

NGB-22 for each service period and NGB-23

Once you have the proper forms, you can submit these to the VA and obtain your COE. Your lender can also help you with this process, so make sure you choose one with deep experience in issuing VA loans and in working with National Guard members.

Need help?

Applying for your Certificate of Eligibility as a National Guard member can be complicated, but we’re here to help. Get in touch today to talk to a VA loan expert who can guide the way.

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