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Recruiting Division FAQ Page

Question: Is there a cost to apply?

Answer: At this time, there is no cost to apply.

Question: What are the minimum requirements?

Answer: You must be 21 years of age, a United States citizen, possess a valid driver’s license and have completed 60 college credits; or 3 years of active duty military with an honorable discharge (if applicable); or 5 years of prior police (full service department) experience.

Question: Does MPD have a maximum age limit?

Answer: No.  However, under current DC law, a sworn officer has to retire at 64 years of age.

Question: What is the current salary?

Answer: The starting salary is $52,184.00.  You will receive this on your first day of employment while in the academy.  After 18 months of service you can expect to earn approximately $57,092.00.

Question: When will I receive compensation?

Answer: You will begin earning your full salary upon entering the Academy.

Question: Do I receive a higher salary for having a degree?

Answer: No.

Question: Retirement?

Answer: Eligible for retirement after 25 years of service with MPD at any age.

Question: Does MPD have a Language Stipend Program?

Answer: Upon successfully passing a foreign language test that emphasizes conversation skills-you will receive a language stipend of $50.00 per pay period or $1,300 per year in additional pay.  This can be earned while you are in the academy.

Question: Does MPD offer a Tuition Reimbursement program?

Answer: Yes.  You may seek reimbursement up to $800.00 per semester, with a maximum allowance of $2,400.00 per academic year.  Further, you must maintain a C average.

Question: Does having any type of security clearance make a difference?

Answer: No.  MPD will conduct its own background investigation whether you have a clearance or not.

Question: I took the POST for another department.  Does that work for you?

Answer: No.  MPD has its own written examination and background process that every applicant must participate in.

Question: Do you have a tattoo policy?

Answer: Tattoos that are offensive cannot be visible to the public.

Question: I have an arrest on my record, am I eligible?

Answer: Please see the list of automatic disqualifiers to see what arrests would make you ineligible if not expunged.  Further, it is recommended that an applicant have any arrest expunged before moving forward in the application process.  

Question: I have done drugs.  Am I disqualified?

Answer: All applicants are encouraged to give a complete, accurate and truthful history of drug usage.

Question: Does MPD have a lateral program?

Answer: Not at this time.

Question: If I am in the military, how can I start the process if I have not yet received my DD-214?

Answer: You can still begin the process.  However, the DD-214 must be provided to the Recruiting Division before you can be hired.

Question: I am currently active duty in the military.  When should I apply?

Answer: Since there is no way to predict the actual length of time the application process can take, it is not possible to give a specific time.   However, about three months from the end of your active duty time may be a good time to apply.

Question: Does MPD honor Military Service Commitments?

Answer: Yes.  When you are scheduled for military training, you will be requested to present a copy of your orders to your commanding official(s).  Please keep in mind that any commitment that you must fulfill during your time in the academy would cause you to be placed with a different academy class other than the one you started with upon your return from service.

Question: Does MPD pay relocation costs?

Answer: Unfortunately, we do not offer relocation incentives or defray costs of travel and/or any other expenses.

Question: What is the body fat percentage for males and females?

Answer: Males: less than 30% at mass processing and 28% at medical. Females: less than 36% at mass processing and 34% at medical.

Question: Do I need to reside in District of Columbia?

Answer: No.  There are no restrictions on residency preferences.  We have personnel who reside outside of the Metropolitan area and travel back to their primary residence in Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, etc. You may live wherever you like as long as you are able to report to work on time.

Question: How many times will I have to visit the Washington Metropolitan area during the process?

Answer: You will be required to visit the Washington metropolitan area approximately three times.  Those times will be for Mass Applicant Processing Day, polygraph test, and psychological/medical test.

Question: How long is the process?

Answer: The process may take up to four to six months but this depends on various factors.  The amount of times an applicant has moved or different states that an applicant has lived in could lengthen the process; or a lengthy work history could lengthen the process.  Your response to requests from your background investigator and meeting any deadline or appointment will also play a role in how quickly the process will take.

Question: What if I do not have all my documents required for Mass Applicant Processing Day?

Answer: We require that you bring the requested documents with you for mass processing.  If you are unable to obtain a copy of your official college transcript we will ask that you bring an unofficial copy with you and furnish the original within 10 days of completing mass processing.  If you have any expungements, those documents must be furnished on the day of mass processing.

Question: What is the Writing Sample?

Answer: It is a 30 minute timed test.  You will be evaluated on your writing skills and critical thinking, spelling, punctuation, and grammar.

Question: What is the Written Examination?

Answer: The written examination is a test divided into four areas: arithmetic, reading comprehension, grammar, and incident report writing

Question: Where is the academy located?

Answer: The academy is located within Washington, DC at 4665 Blue Plains Drive, SW.

Question: When is the next academy class?

Answer: Currently, we have one academy class starting each month.

Question: Does MPD have a residency program while in the academy?

Answer: MPD does not offer a residency program.  There are DC government programs that offer financial assistance and other incentives to become a first-time homeowner in Washington, DC.

Question: How long is the academy?

Answer: 28 weeks-of intensive academic and physical skills training including two weeks of firearms training, one week of civil disturbance training, one week of vehicle skills training, and officer survival skills training.

Question: Do I need prior law enforcement training?

Answer: No, we will equip you with the skills and training that you will need upon graduating from the academy.

Question: Where will I be assigned?

Answer: At the conclusion of your academy training, you will be assigned to one of the seven patrol districts.  You will be provided an opportunity to request what district you would like to go to, but the final decision will be based on the needs of the department.

Question: How do I become a detective, Sergeant, ERT member, K9 member, or a member of another type of specialized unit?

Answer: Each specialized unit has different requirements to include the length of time on the department.  For example, to be eligible for detective, you must have three years, but to become a sergeant, you must have five years before taking the promotional exam. 

The best recommendation is to work hard towards the unit you would want to be a part of.  If you sit back and wait, your chances of being recognized are much less than the officer that strives for the direction he wants his career to go.



If you have questions regarding any matters personal in nature please contact us directly at (202) 645-0445

Or visit us at:

101 M Street, SW
Washington, DC 20024