4856 Missing Accountability Formation Essay

In today’s post, I want to share an example Army Failure to Report Counseling.  This is a generic counseling example that you can use if you have to counsel one of your Soldiers for failing to report to duty.  Just modify the information as needed to meet your specific situation.  Each category is taken from DA Form 4856.

Purpose of Counseling

Event Oriented: Failure to Report for Duty on 15 November 2010 (Violation of Article 86)

Summary of Counseling

The purpose of this counseling is to inform you SPC Edwards that you failed to report for duty at 0700 hours on 15 November 2010.  This was the “first formation” for our unit.  You did not show up to work until 0800 hours.

The previous day, 14 November 2010, you were reminded of the formation twice.  We talked about it at lunch and I reminded you again before you went home for the day.

When I asked you why you were late for formation you told me that your alarm clock did not go off and you slept in on accident.  Since this is the second time you were late for work during the past 90 days, I am going to have you do the following things:

(1)    Show up for formation 30-minutes early every day for the next week

(2)    Write a three page typed report on the importance of being on time

In the event you are late again, during the next 90 days, I will recommend to the Company Commander that you be reduced in rank from E4 to E3.

Failing to report for duty is a direct violation of Article 86 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“Pursuant to 1-16, AR 635-200, this constitutes a formal counseling session concerning your noted deficiencies. You will be given a reasonable period of time to correct these deficiencies and to rehabilitate yourself into a productive satisfactory Soldier. Your conduct will be monitored during this time and you will be given an opportunity to prove yourself. If your performance and conduct continues to be unsatisfactory, you could be processed for separation under Chapter 5-13 or 5-17 AR 635-200. You could also be chapter under Chapter 9, 13, or 14. If you are processed for separation under Chapters 9 or 13 you could receive a general discharge and if processed under Chapter 14, Section III, you may receive up to an Other Than Honorable Discharge. Regardless of the type of discharge that you may receive it may have serious consequences effecting civilian, veteran’s benefits, or future service.”

Plan of Action

SPC Edwards will show up for formation 30 minutes prior to each formation for the next seven days.  He will report to the Staff Duty NCO and sign in starting 16 Nov 2010 and ending 23 Nov 2010.  He will sign in NLT 0630 hours each day.  I will collect the information from the Staff Duty NCO to make sure you showed up on time.

You will write a three page, typed report on the importance of showing up on time.  The paper will be single spaced, sized 12 Arial Font, with 1 inch margins.  It will have minimum 1,000 words.  You will use at least three sources and cite them in your paper.  This report is due on 19 Nov 2010 at 1700 hours.  I will read and grade the report.  If it is not to standard, I will have you rewrite it.

Session Closing

SPC Edwards, you are a good Soldier.  Although you made a bad decision to show up late for formation, I know you have the potential to do great things.  I hope you will let this be a “learning lesson” that helps mold you into the Soldier you are capable of becoming.  If you have any questions about this counseling or plan of action, you can call me to clarify it.

Leader Responsibilities

My responsibility is to make sure SPC Edwards signs in on time each morning and that the paper is submitted on time.  If he has questions, he can contact me directly.  I will do a follow-up counseling with him in two weeks.

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Now that I’ve provided you an example Army Failure to Report Counseling, I would like to share some tips for success with you.

First and foremost, your job is to collect the facts before you do the counseling.  Make sure you talk with the Soldier and find out what happened (from their perspective).  There might be more to the story than you know about.  I’m not telling you to let the Soldier off the hook, but I am telling you to get all the information before you put anything in writing. After all, there is always at least two sides to every story.

My next tip for success is to do the counseling immediately.  Don’t wait a few days or a few weeks to do the counseling.  The sooner you do it the better. You want to set a good example and do it quickly.  Don’t leave the Soldier wondering what is going to happen and when.

Another good tip for success is to put some thought into the punishment.  Before you recommend UCMJ or a demotion, think about the best way to fix the problem without ruining your Soldier’s career at the same time.  You might want to get some input from your supervisor, or even a trusted peer.  You should also take into consideration the Soldiers’ past performance and future potential.

My next tip for success is to have someone review your counseling statement BEFORE you sit down with your Soldier.  The last thing you want to do is to put something into writing that comes back and haunts you.  If you can’t get input from anyone else, at least take a few hour break from the time you first write the counseling statement until you sit down with the Soldier.  Look over the document one last time with a fresh set of eyes.

My final tip is to make sure you put it in writing.  A verbal counseling is not good enough, especially for a failure to report infraction.  If you don’t put it in writing, it’s as if the counseling never happened.  Do your job and put it in writing.

Final Thoughts

Thanks for reading my Army Failure to Report Counseling Example and tips.  I hope you find the information helpful.  I’d love to know what you think.  Do you have any tips for doing a Failure to Report Counseling?  If so, leave a comment below to share your thoughts. You can also ask questions here, and I will do my best to provide an answer.

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On 15 April 2014 you were not accounted for during Physical Training held at 0700 in front of the Liberty Gym. You did not show up until 0720 and did not notify anyone that you were going to be late. This is a violation of Article 86, Failure to Report. You were previously briefed that you need to be present at least 10 minutes prior to formation. This is a violation of Article 92: Failure to Obey an Order or Regulation. This behavior will not be tolerated. Although you have not been chronically late in the past, this behavior is becoming more common and it is my duty to uphold standards. If this disregard for standards continues, you will be recommended for UCMJ action.

I am counseling you for the conduct noted above. If this conduct continues, action may be initiated to separate you from the Army under AR 635-200, Chapters 5, 9, 13, or 14. If you are involuntarily separated, you could receive an Honorable discharge, a General, under honorable conditions, discharge, or an Under Other Than Honorable conditions discharge. An Honorable discharge may be awarded under any provision. A General discharge may be awarded for separation under Chapter 14. If you receive an Honorable discharge, you will be qualified for most benefits resulting from military service. An involuntary Honorable discharge, however, will disqualify you from reenlisting for some period of time and may disqualify you from receiving transitional benefits (e.g., commissary, housing, health benefits) and the G.I. Bill. If you receive a General discharge, you will be disqualified from reenlisting in the service for some period of time and you will be ineligible for some benefits including the 9/11 G.I. Bill. If you receive an Under Other Than Honorable conditions discharge, you will be ineligible for reenlistment and for most benefits including payment for accrued leave, transportation of dependents and household goods to home, transitional benefits and 9/11 G. I. Bill. You may also face difficulty in obtaining civilian employment, as employers have a low regard for the General and Under Other Than Honorable conditions discharges. Although there are agencies to which you may apply to have the character of your discharge changed, it is unlikely that any such applications will be successful.

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