Massachusetts Commonwealth Veteran Benefits: Your Comprehensive Guide

Massachusetts Veteran Benefits

Veterans serve their country. It’s time that their country serves them. 

287,000 veterans live in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and more than half are 65 years of age or older. The older you get, the more support you need from the state government. Thankfully, Massachusetts commonwealth veteran benefits are strong. 

What are some financial veteran citizen benefits? How can Massachusetts veterans pay for school and job training? Where can veteran citizens in Massachusetts be buried without fees? 

Answer these questions and you can live a comfortable life in Massachusetts. Here is your quick guide.

Financial Benefits

Veterans do not have to pay income taxes on their retirement pay and their Survivor Benefit Plan payments. They may have to pay income taxes on their regular income.

All veterans can receive a Welcome Home Bonus. As soon as they arrive home in Massachusetts, they receive a cash payment that they can use for whatever they want. If a veteran dies, their dependent children or spouse can receive the bonus they would have received. 

Veterans of previous conflicts can also apply for bonuses and annuities. World War II veterans can receive up to $300. 

Veterans with disabilities have more opportunities. They can apply for a property tax exemption of up to $1,500. They must be at least 10% disabled according to the Department of Veterans Affairs, and they must have been a Massachusetts resident for five years.

Veterans who lost at least one eye or hand can receive a motor vehicle excise exemption. They do not have to pay a motor vehicle tax on a car they buy. Veterans who lost a hand or leg are exempt from sales taxes on cars. 

Veterans who are permanently disabled can receive annuities. They can receive a payment of $2,000 every February 1st and August 1st. They must have a 100% disability ranking from the Department of Veterans Affairs.

You should consider applying for as many benefits as possible. You can use a service to increase your benefits or receive healthcare. Make sure to read the company’s FAQ page before you hire the company. 

Housing 

Massachusetts offers two soldiers’ homes, one in Holyoke and one in Chelsea. A veteran can stay in either facility full-time, and they can receive comprehensive healthcare services. 

Several homeless shelters receive support from the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services. Any veteran who faces homelessness can go to a shelter, especially if they are in an emergency situation. Shelters are located across the state, including in rural areas. 

Education

All Massachusetts veterans can receive tuition waivers for state colleges and universities. This includes all schools in the University of Massachusetts system.

If you are in the National Guard, you can apply for a National Guard tuition waiver. This waiver also applies to all state colleges and universities in the Massachusetts school system. You can apply for financial assistance if you want to go to a private college.

Veterans interested in short-term training can examine the Veterans Workforce Investment Program. The program provides grants to veterans so they can take up to 48 weeks of training for jobs. You can receive the grant along with GI Bill and other benefits.

State Employment

Massachusetts requires that all applicants for firefighter, police officer, and correction officer jobs take civil service exams. Yet all veterans can receive veterans’ preference for these exams.

If you score 70% or higher on the entry-level exam, you are automatically placed at the top of the list for a job. Veterans with disabilities will be placed at the very top of the list. If you take a promotional exam, you receive two extra points.

You can apply for a job with the state government that requires no testing. You will be placed at the top of the list of applicants, regardless of which job you apply for. You will also receive priority if you apply for jobs with the City of Boston.

Recreation 

Veterans must apply for hunting or fishing licenses in order to hunt or fish in Massachusetts. But military personnel stationed at a Massachusetts base can apply for licenses themselves. They can receive discounts, paying for their licenses at the resident rate. 

Veterans with disabilities can receive special license plates from the state. If they park at a state park, they do not have to pay a fee. 

Burial Benefits

Massachusetts veterans are entitled to the same funeral and burial benefits as all other veterans. Massachusetts runs two state veteran cemeteries. The Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Agawam is just north of the Massachusetts-Connecticut border, while the Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Winchendon is south of the Massachusetts-New Hampshire border. 

Boston-area residents may find it hard to access either of these cemeteries. Veterans concerned about the distance can be buried at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, which is on Cape Cod. 

Burial at all three of these cemeteries is free for veterans. The burial of spouses at state cemeteries requires small fees. 

Veterans can have their remains cremated and buried. Fort Devins Post Cemetery has burial spaces available for cremated remains. The Department of Veterans Affairs runs the cemetery, and it is located close to Boston. 

Massachusetts Commonwealth Veteran Benefits

Massachusetts commonwealth veteran benefits touch upon all aspects of life. All veterans can receive cash bonuses. Veterans with disabilities can receive annual annuities as well as fee waivers for state parks.

Veterans struggling with housing can live in a state shelter. Undergraduate students can go to a state school for free. 

All veterans can receive burials in state cemeteries. If travel from Boston is a concern, you can opt for burial in a national cemetery. 

These benefits are the tip of the iceberg. VetLink Solutions helps connect Massachusetts veterans to healthcare resources. Get a free consultation today.

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