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How to find military service records

Current military service records are found at the Department of National Defence (DND) and then are transferred to Library and Archives Canada (LAC) for safe keeping.

There are two ways to obtain these records:

  1. You can search LAC's online databases.
    -OR-
  2. You can send an Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) online request to either LAC or DND depending on when the member served.

Need help? Phone LAC at 1-866-578-7772 or send an email to BAC.CIP.LAC@canada.ca.

Let's get started!

Search for family and friends

When did the member serve?

Choose one of the following:

Online Database

First World War (1914-1918)

Search the personnel records of all who served in the First World War

All First World War records are open on Library and Archives Canada website.

Online Database

Second World War (1939-1947)

Search the records of Second World War - War Dead, 1939-1947

Search records of those who died in service between 1939 and 1947, including those killed in action, those who subsequently died of injuries related to service, and those who died as a result of accident or illness while in service.

ATIP Request

Between 1919-1997 (1919-2007 for reserves)

Send an ATIP Online Request to LAC.

Library and Archives Canada keeps records for those who were in:

  • the regular forces between 1919 and 1997, including Permanent Force, Second World War (those who did not die during the war) and Korea;
    -OR-
  • the reserves between 1919 and 2007 (not all files were retained) ;
    -OR-
  • the Newfoundland Militia who served in the Second World War (note that not all files were retained).

Service records from this time are protected because they contain personal information.

ATIP Request

Between 1998 to present (2008-present for reserves)

Send an ATIP Online Request to DND.

DND keeps records for those who were in:

  • the regular Canadian Forces between 1 January 1998 and today AND is either:
    • currently serving,
    • released from service or
    • died in service
    -OR-
  • the reserve Canadian Forces between 1 March 2008 and today AND is either:
    • currently serving,
    • released from service or
    • died in service

Service records from this time are protected because they contain personal information.


More information

Genealogy and Family History

Are you just starting your family history research? Library and Archives Canada can help you find out how.


Search for family and friends who died in service

The Canadian Virtual War Memorial is a registry of Canadians who died in service to our country.


Books of Remembrance

The Books of Remembrance list the names of Canadians who died while serving our country.


Visit memorials in Europe

Plan your visit to Canada's memorials in Europe.


Funeral and burial assistance

Every Veteran deserves a dignified funeral and burial. The funeral and burial program helps pay for these services.


Grave marker maintenance

We honour Canada's fallen and preserve their legacy. One way we do this is by maintaining their gravesites and grave markers, at home and abroad.


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