Each year, hundreds of military service members are injured while serving their country. Though many of these injuries occur while actively fighting in the line of duty, others happen during times of peace. Upon their discharge from the armed forced, military veterans who have been diagnosed with a disability are eligible to receive a variety of federal, state, and financial benefits. Understanding the basics of each of these different types of disability benefits—and how they can help—is essential for veterans who hope to achieve full compensation for their hard work and years of service to the United States.
Medical treatment is perhaps one of the most important types of benefits available to disabled military veterans. Traditionally, disabled veterans have been eligible to receive medical treatment at any of the numerous Veterans Administration Hospitals around the world. Depending on the specific disability, veterans may be able to receive free medical care and medication—and in some cases, travel reimbursements may be possible. Disabled veterans who are interested in learning more about their options when it comes to medical treatment should be sure to consult with trained officials at a Veterans Administration Hospital in their area for optimal results.
While medical treatment is important for disabled veterans, obtaining employment is also considered to be quite crucial. Fortunately, federal employers are currently required to give preference to disabled veterans, through the use of additional “points” on the candidates’ application. While most disabled veterans will get at least 5 points added to their federal job applications, those with more severe disabilities or who served under specific campaigns may receive additional credits. Veterans should be sure to indicate their military duty and disability level to get the maximal level of points when applying for a job with the federal government.
In some cases, veterans are no longer able to complete the work that they were trained for after the development of their disability. Physical, psychological, and emotional traumas may mean that tasks which were once second nature are now impossible to perform. Disabled veterans who are in this situation are eligible for vocational rehabilitation through the Veterans Administration Rehabilitation Program. While some disabled veterans may be completely re-trained to a job that is entirely different from what they were doing in the past, others may simply receive protective gear or equipment that makes their current job more manageable.
Depending on the state in which the disabled veteran lives, a number of other benefits may also be available. For example, disabled veterans who live in California can receive preferential treatment not only for federal jobs, but also those advertised by the state. Similarly, Montana residents who have been diagnosed with a 100% service disability can expect to have their property taxes waived. Finally, disabled veterans who reside in North Carolina are not required to pay for hunting and fishing license fees, and may be able to obtain a free or reduced price pass to all state and national parks. The Department of Veterans Administration in your state can provide more information when it comes to identifying state-related benefits for veterans’ disability.
For more information regarding disability benefits visit the Military’s Veteran’s Benefits page.