State of Virginia Veteran Benefits

Employment Benefits

Does the State of Virginia offer Employment Benefits to Veterans?

The State of Virginia has a Priority of Service for Veterans and Eligible Spouses program. Through this program, Veterans and their eligible spouses receive priority for employment, training and placement services for any qualified Department of Labor employment or job-training programs.

Who is an Eligible Spouse?

An eligible spouse is the spouse of a Veteran who is totally disabled or died as a resultof a service connected disability, or has been listed for at least 90 days as missing inaction, captured in the line of duty, or forcibly detained in the line of duty by a foreigngovernment at the time of application.

Does the State of Virginia assist Veterans in finding employment?

Yes. Most of the Virginia Employment Commissionʼs (VEC) local offices provideVeterans Employment Representatives and Disabled Veterans Outreach Program staffto assist Veterans and eligible spouses in finding jobs and meeting their career goals.Some of the services offered include:

  • Career and job counseling
  • Education and training recommendations
  • Resume preparation
  • Assistance tailoring skills and abilities to available jobs
  • Expanded job search through the use of the internet
  • Referrals for social service and family support
  • Developing employment opportunities for veterans with employment barriers


Education Benefits

Does the State of Virginia offer Education Benefits to Veterans?

No. The State of Virginia currently offers benefits only to survivors and dependents ofservice members through the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program.

What is the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program?

The Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program (VMSDEP) waives tuition and fees for up to four years at any state-supported College or University todependents of military service members who were taken as prisoners of war, missing inaction, killed in the line of duty, or became at least 90 percent disabled as a result oftheir service in an armed conflict. Depending on funding, a stipend to offset the costs ofroom, board, books and supplies may also be available.

Are there any Education Benefits available for survivors of Virginia NationalGuard or Reserve service members?

Yes. Survivors of service members of the United Stated Armed Forces, the UnitedStates Armed Forces Reserves, the Virginia National Guard or the Virginia NationalGuard Reserves are all eligible for the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program.

Are there any age restrictions for dependents to participate in the Virginia MilitarySurvivors and Dependents Education Program?

There are no age restrictions for surviving spouses to participate in the program.However, dependent children must be between the ages of 16 and 29 to be eligible toparticipate in the program.

Can only Residents of Virginia participate in the Virginia Military Survivors andDependents Education Program?

Yes. A service member must have been a Virginia citizen when they entered the serviceor must have been a citizen for a minimum of 5 years immediately prior to the date ofapplication for admission. A surviving spouse must have lived in Virginia for at least 5years prior to marrying the service member or must have been a citizen for a minimum of 5 years immediately prior to the date of application for admission.

How do I apply for benefits under the Virginia Military Survivors and DependentsEducation Program?

Complete the Virginia Military Survivors and Dependents Education Program Application and submit it to:

VMSDE Program1351 Hershberger Road, N.W.Suite 220 Roanoke, VA 24012Phone: (540) 561-6625Fax: (540) 857-7573

More information on the the VMSDE program can be found here: VMSDEP FAQs

Does the State of Virginia offer Honorary High School Diplomas to Veterans?

Yes. Veterans who were unable to complete their high school education due to service in the armed forces during the Vietnam War, Korean War or World War II are eligible to receive an honorary diploma.

How can I receive an Honorary Diploma?

To receive an Honorary Diploma, Veterans, or family members or veteransʼ organizations in the Veteranʼs behalf, need to submit a statement to the Veterans Education Unit of the Virginia Department of Education with a description of their service, the location and name of the last school attended, and a statement that they were unable to complete high school when they returned to civilian life. The statements or a completed Veteran Honorary High School Diploma Form(PDF)  can be sent to:

Veterans Honorary High School Diploma Program  Virginia Department of Education  P.O. Box 2120  Richmond, Virginia 23218-2120

Other State of Virginia Benefits

Virginia Wounded Warrior Program

The Virginia General Assembly created the Virginia Wounded Warrior Program in 2008to make certain that services needed by Veterans and their families were readily available throughout the state.

The VWWP, operated by the Virginia Department of Veterans Services, places a specialemphasis on providing services to Veterans and families of Veterans who have beenaffected by stress related conditions or traumatic brain injuries as a result of their military service. The VWWP “monitors and coordinates behavioral health and rehabilitative services and support services through an integrated, comprehensive andresponsive public and private partnership.”

The VWWP provides an individual assessment of the Veteran and their family todetermine their needs and then provides services as needed. These services include:

  • Support Groups for Veteran and Family Members
  • Behavioral Healthcare
  • Resource Specialists and Counseling
  • Veterans Benefits Assistance
  • Employment and Housing Assistance
  • Reentry Assistance for Incarcerated Veterans


Any Veteran who is a resident of Virginia may participate in the Virginia WoundedWarrior Program. Members of the Virginia National Guard or Armed Forces not in aactive federal service, and their families, are also eligible to participate in the program.

Long Term Care

The State of Virginia has the following long-term care facilities available for Veterans:

Virginia Veterans Care Center (VVCC)-The VVCC is a state-of-the-art facility with 240beds that provides comprehensive, high quality care. Physical therapy, x-rays,laboratory work, podiatry care and many other ancillary health care services areprovided on-site. In addition, the building and grounds offer wheelchair accessiblenature trails and deck, chapel, library, billiards room, and barber shop all nestled in theBlue Ridge mountainside. Honorably discharged Veterans of the United Stated ArmedForces who are residents of the State of Virginia are eligible for admittance.

Sitter & Barfoot Veterans Care CenterThis facility is located in Richmond, Virginia onthe campus of the McGuire VA Medical Center. The facility features 160 single-occupancy rooms in three nursing units- one 40-bed Alzheimerʼs dementia unit with enclosed courtyards and two 60-bed skilled nursing care units. The amenities featuredat this facility include private rooms with private baths, barber shop, pharmacy, activity rooms, lounges, library, game room, computers with internet access, walking trails andlandscaped inner courtyards. Honorably discharged Veterans of the United States Armed Forces who are residents of the State of Virginia and meet medical requirementsfor nursing home care are eligible for admittance.

Veterans ID Card

Hundreds of Virginia businesses offer discounts to Veterans carrying a valid ID. There are five different ways a Veteran can apply for a Veterans ID Card: (1) at their localDMV customer service center, (2) at a DMV 2 Go mobile office, (3) online at, (4) by U.S. mail: P.O. Box 27412, Richmond, VA 23269-0001, or

(5) by Fax: (801) 367-1112. There is a $10 DMV application fee and your VirginiaVeterans ID card never expires. You will need a copy of your DD-214 and must have avalid Virginia driverʼs license or ID card to apply.

Cemetery Services

The State of Virginia has three state cemeteries- Virginia Veterans Cemetery at Amelia,Albert G. Horton, Jr. Memorial Veterans Cemetery in Suffolk, and Southwest VirginiaVeterans Cemetery in Dublin. Members of the U.S. Armed Forces who die on active duty, retire from military service or are honorably discharged are eligible for burial in oneof Virginiaʼs Veterans cemeteries. Legal spouses and/or unmarried minor childrenunder age 21 are also eligible for burial services. Services include an assignedgravesite, opening and closing the grave, and ordering and placing the grave marker.There is no cost to the Veteran for these services. The cost is $300 for eligibledependents.

Troops to Trucks

Through the Virginia Troops to Trucks program, qualified military personnel applying for a Virginia commercial driverʼs license (CDL) are able to waive the skills test and are onlyrequired to pass the the written CDL knowledge exam. This streamlines the process and eliminates the need for service men and women to provide a commercial vehicle forthe skills test. To qualify, applicants must:

  • Be a Virginia resident currently holding or eligible for a Virginia driverʼs license
  • Be active military or discharged within the past 90 days,
  • Be certified by their commanding officer that they posses a military operatorʼs permit and have at least two years experience driving the same type of vehiclethey plan to drive with a Virginia CDL, and
  • Possess a safe driving record


Military members who are interested in obtaining a CDL but lack experience operatingheavy vehicles may receive their CDL training and testing on their military base prior to leaving the service. The DMV has partnered with a number military installations toprovide this necessary training. The DMV also works with various organizations toassist those who obtain their CDL through the Virginia Troops to Trucks program find employment opportunities. For more information, see the Virginia Troops to Trucks  brochure.

Real Estate Tax Exemption

Veterans who are rated 100% by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for apermanent and total service-connected disability or have a service-connectedunemployable rating are exempt from paying any real estate taxes on their primary residence. The exemption applies to the Veteranʼs primary residence and up to one acre of land. If the Veteran died after January 1, 2011, the surviving spouse of aneligible veteran may receive the exemption if they do not remarry and continue tooccupy the property as their primary residence.

Hunting, Fishing and Trapping Licenses

Resident Veterans of Virginia with a permanent and total service-connected disability are eligible to receive a life-time hunting and fresh water fishing license and a life-timetrapping license through the Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries. Eachlicense costs $10. Veterans with a service-connected disability rating of 70% or greater may purchase basic hunting licenses at half price. Non-resident Veterans may purchase the basic hunting license at half of the out-of-state rate.

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