Those people who are veterans of the United States Uniformed Services may be entitled to a wide array of programs and services given to them by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Their eligibility for a lot of these benefits is based upon their discharge from active military service under other than dishonorable conditions. Let’s look at some of those benefits now.
There are basic health care and education benefits that a lot of veterans know of. These are provided to them from the Department of Veterans Affairs: Tricare and the GI Bill. On their own, these benefits are quite substantial. However, there are various other programs that work to give even more benefits to veterans and their families. Even beyond the more popular benefits of Tricare and the Gi Bill, there are even more healthcare benefits, education benefits, and other lesser known benefits that could greatly help to improve the lives of veterans and help to lessen the financial burdens of medical care or other expenses. Following is a list of 10 benefits you probably haven’t heard about, but all veterans should see if they qualify for them.
- 1. Long-term Care
This is expensive, yet often necessary to give care to aging relatives. Thanks to the Aid and Attendance program, many veterans are able to get money to cover cost of nursing homes, assisted living programs and other options for long-term care. With couples able to receive up to $25,020 per year, the Aid and Attendance benefit will help to provide for a great portion of long-term care costs. Surviving spouses of veterans are may also be able to receive up to $13,560 per year to cover long-term care costs.
- 2. Caregiver Support
If you choose to take care of a sick veteran at home, the Department of Veterans Affairs provides a caregiver support program. Although the program doesn’t give any monetary support to caregivers, they are given a free support line and a caregiver support coordinator to help them figure out military benefits and ease the stress of care giving.
- 3. Death Benefits
When a veteran dies, families also have some unique benefits available to them too. A U.S. flag can be requested to drape over the casket and families may also request a Presidential Memorial Certificate to honor the deceased loved one’s service. The Department of Veterans Affairs also gives free headstones or grave markers.
- 4. Certification Programs
As well as receiving credits to use toward a college degree, the GI Bill allows for up to $2,000 to help get back the cost of certification courses or other vocational training programs. This will work well for those veterans that wish to change careers or go after a career path that does not require a college degree.
- 5. Transferring GI Bill Credits
Any unused credits through the GI Bill can be transferred to the spouses and dependents of veterans. However, there are service limits required to transfer the benefits.
- 6. Free Tax Preparation
Both veterans and their families are allowed to have free tax preparation services through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance office on military bases. The people who work there have the expertise in working with the complicated nature of military-related tax issues.
- 7. Life Insurance
A lot of veterans have issues with getting traditional life insurance, especially if they received an injury during their time of service. Through the Servicemembers’ and Veterans’ Group Life Insurance program, they can get up to $400,000 in life insurance, and the program also offers competitive premium rates.
- 8. VA Foreclosures
The VA keeps a list of homes that are serviced by VA loans and have gone into foreclosures. Veterans have the ability to look through the list of VA-acquired properties and purchase homes at a discount. You don’t have to be a veteran to search through the properties, but all of them qualify for VA financing.
- 9. Mortgage Help
Those veterans having trouble making mortgage payments are eligible for repayment assistance thanks to the Department of Veterans Affairs. Options include special repayment plans, loan forbearance and loan modification programs. More benefits are available for those with VA loans and for homeless veterans.
- 10. American Corporate Partners
American Corporate Partners connects veterans with the top companies to help them get a job after their time of service. As well as being connected to job opportunities, they also have an opportunity to get one-on-one mentoring and other career development services.