Rules for Rendering Hand Salute of U.S. Flag New Law Allows Retirees and Vets to Salute Flag <!-- .article-header --> The National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 contained an amendment to allow un-uniformed servicemembers, military retirees, and veterans to render a hand salute during the hoisting, lowering, or passing of the U.S. flag. The amendment does not address saluting the flag during the playing of the national anthem, pledge of allegiance, honors (i.e. Taps), or any other saluting situations. Excerpt from H.R. 4986: SEC. 594. CONDUCT BY MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES AND VETERANS OUT OF UNIFORM DURING HOISTING, LOWERING, OR PASSING OF UNITED STATES FLAG. Section 9 of title 4, United States Code, is amended by striking all persons present and all that follows through the end of the section and inserting the following: all persons present in uniform should render the military salute. Members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present but not in uniform may render the military salute. All other persons present should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart, or if applicable, remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Citizens of other countries present should stand at attention. All such conduct toward the flag in a moving column should be rendered at the moment the flag passes.