There are over 100,000 veterans in the state of Idaho. Federal and state governments provide a variety of benefits to help these former service members acclimate back to civilian life, and Idaho is no different.
But what exactly are these Idaho state veteran benefits? How do they apply to Idaho state veterans, and to what extent?
That’s what we’re here to look at today. Read on to find out more about Idaho state veteran benefits.
Idaho State Veteran Employment Benefits
One of the key Idaho state veteran benefits is the hiring preference given to veterans. State law provides hiring preference points to Idaho veterans who served on active duty.
This applies to those currently serving or those with an Honorable Discharge. Purple Heart recipients apply here as well. Disabled veterans with a VA disability rating of 10% or greater get 10 points.
These points only apply to initial hires, not for promotions. Spouses of veterans are eligible to claim this benefit if the veterans themselves can’t work.
If an Idaho veteran needs an occupational license, they receive a license fee waiver. That means they don’t have to pay for any occupational license or any subsequent renewals.
Furthermore, there could be expedited services for license applications for military spouses, depending on the demand. Professional licenses also can’t be revoked and don’t need to be renewed six months after leaving service.
What is VA Disability Rating?
Before we go any further, it’s important to explain what VA disability ratings are. It’s a rating system by the Veteran Affairs on the severity of someone’s disability sustained during service.
The VA calculates this rating based on things like doctor’s notes, examinations, and other information and documentation from agencies. Ratings help determine some of the benefits one receives after discharge.
Idaho State Veteran Financial Benefits
Idaho state veterans receive a slew of financial benefits that relate to things like state and property taxes. Let’s break each of them down to get a better sense of what this all means:
State Tax Breaks for Veterans
State tax breaks for Idaho veterans depend on things like income, military service, and disabilities. If someone is stationed outside of the state, military pay is considered tax-free.
Those who are 65 years or older, or are 62 and older with a disability, receive free retirement and SBP payments. Un-remarried surviving spouses of veterans also receive this benefit.
Property Tax Reduction
There are two property tax reductions available for Idaho military veterans. Those with 10% VA-rated service-connected disabilities might qualify for the “Circuit Breaker” tax benefit.
To qualify, one must live in a home or mobile home, though retirement homes often count. They need an income of $30,450 or less. Surviving spouses also receive this reduction under some circumstances.
Disabled veterans with a VA-rated 100% service-connected disability are eligible to reduce their property taxes by over $1,000. They have to be a full-time Idaho resident as well as a homeowner’s exemption.
Income Tax Exemptions
Another critical service member benefit in Idaho is the income tax exemption. Those who are Idaho residents stationed out of the state don’t have to pay Idaho state income taxes, though they still pay federal taxes.
Veterans or un-remarried spouses of veterans aged 65 or older can deduct any military retirement benefits from their state taxes. Anyone aged 62 years or older with a disability qualifies for this as well.
Grocery Tax Credits
Qualifying veterans are also eligible to claim a grocery tax credit. They can do so even if they aren’t required to file an income tax return.
It’s important to note that the state tax code changes from year to year. Go to a local tax office to get a clear consensus on your tax benefits.
Idaho State Veteran Housing Benefits
There are three veterans homes in Idaho in Boise, Lewiston, and Pocatello. Each facility is Medicaid and Medicare certified. Any honorably discharged veterans and their spouses are eligible for admission at these homes.
Wartime vets receive priority placement statuses, but every applicant must have an Idaho state residence and eligibility for a VA pension. Spouses looking for skilled care need to show proof of marriage.
Medicaid benefits are required for application. Otherwise, applicants must pay the required monthly fee for care at these veteran care homes.
Other Idaho State Veteran Benefits
Those looking for a “veteran” designation for their Idaho driver’s licenses can send in documentation such as VA letters and discharge paperwork to add that on. This is available when they need a new license or is renewing one.
Once the veteran designation is added, however, veterans don’t need to request it upon subsequent renewals. Once it’s added, it’s there indefinitely.
Idaho residents with 100% VA-rated service-related disabilities can receive free passes to Idaho state parks and campsites. They need to apply using the necessary paperwork and VA letters.
Veterans with lower-rated service-related disabilities qualify for other recreational benefits, such as reduced hunting fees. Supporting documentation is required for this as well.
Idaho veterans can also be buried at the Idaho State Veterans Cemetery. Spouses, children, and parents of eligible service members also qualify for burial here.
Finding the Right Veteran Benefits in Idaho
Navigating Idaho state veteran benefits can be complicated if you aren’t sure where to start. Use this guide as a map for understanding how veterans can receive the benefits they deserve.
Looking for fair compensation for your military service? Contact us today, and we’ll get you started on a solution right away!