Military Commissions Seal
Military Commissions Documents
A host of instructions, orders and memoranda helped establish a framework and defined measures for how military commissions have operated in the United States. Today, military commissions procedures are also governed by laws, rules and regulations issued by the U.S. Congress and the Secretary of Defense.
Present-day military commissions operate in accordance with documents that include the following: those detailing who may be tried by military commission and for what crimes; basic protections to which an accused is entitled; rules of procedure and evidence applicable to trials by military commission; and instructions for attorneys practicing before military commissions and the U.S. Court of Military Commission Review (USCMCR).
Current Documents

Today’s Military Commissions operate in accordance with the following documents.

The 2019 Edition of the Manual for Military Commissions (MMC) amends previous editions of the MMC. The MMC is published in accordance with 10 U.S.C. § 949a and includes pre-trial, trial, and post-trial procedures, and rules of evidence applicable in cases triable by military commission under the MCA 2009. The 2019 Edition of the MMC contains revisions to clarify the authority to excuse counsel for an accused after the formation of an attorney-client relationship.
The Military Commissions Trial Judiciary Rules of Court dated September 1, 2016, contains instructions for lawyers and accused practicing before military commissions. The Military Judge signed Change 1 dated March 2, 2017. The Military Judge signed Change 2 dated December 21, 2017.
The Military Commissions Act of 2009, (the MCA) is the law passed by Congress and signed by President Barack Obama on October 28, 2009, that authorizes the President of the United States to establish military commissions. It defines who may be tried by military commission and for what crimes. It lays out the basic rights an accused is entitled to and outlines procedures for conducting commissions. The 2009 MCA replaced the Military Commissions Act of 2006.
The Regulation for Trial by Military Commission (2011) is promulgated by the U.S. Secretary of Defense. It identifies policies and procedures for operating military commissions, including the operations of the United States Court of Military Commission Review. Change 1 revised Chapter 6-2 of the Regulation. It was effective January 7, 2015. Change 1 was rescinded effective February 26, 2015. Chapter 9 of the Regulation was amended in 2016.
The United States Court of Military Commission Review (USCMCR) Revised Rules of Practice contains instructions for lawyers practicing before the USCMCR.