State / Territory Benefits - Georgia
Department of Driver Services (DDS) Benefits
Health Insurance Benefits
Parks and Recreation Benefits
Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Facilities
Summary: The State of Georgia offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans including property tax exemptions, state employment preferences, education and tuition assistance, free driver's licenses, vehicle tags, home care for war Veterans, as well as hunting and fishing license privileges. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component and Veteran disability status.
State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility
State Tax Advantage: None
State Income Tax: The period of time military personnel served on active duty as members of the armed forces of the United States in combat activities during a period designated by the President plus the next 180 days thereafter are disregarded in determining whether any filing requirement has been performed within the time limit prescribed for filing. For individuals who are hospitalized as a result of an injury or confined as a prisoner-of-war, the period of service in the combat zone, plus the period of confinement and the next 180 days thereafter shall be disregarded in determining whether any filing requirement has been performed within the time limit prescribed for filing. [O.C.G.A. § 40-7-36]
Retired Military Pay: Taxpayers who are 62 or older, or permanently and totally disabled regardless of age, may be eligible for a retirement income adjustment on their Georgia tax return. Retirement income includes:
- Income from pensions and annuities
- Interest income
- Dividend income
- Net income from rental property
- Capital gains income
- Income from royalties
For married couples filing joint returns with both members receiving retirement income, the maximum adjustment for that year may be up to twice the individual exclusion amount. Retirement income exceeding the maximum adjustable amount will be taxed at the normal rate.
Military Disability Retired Pay: Retirees who entered the military before September 24, 1975, and members receiving disability retirements based on combat injuries or who could receive disability payments from the VA are covered by laws giving disability broad exemption from federal income tax. Most military retired pay based on service-related disabilities also is free from federal income tax, but there is no guarantee of total protection.
VA Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation: VA benefits are not taxable because they generally are for disabilities and are not subject to federal or state taxes.
Military SBP/ RCSBP/RSFPP: Generally subject to state taxes for those states with income tax. Check with state department of revenue office.
Homestead Tax Exemption for Disabled Veteran, Surviving Spouse Or Minor Children: Any qualifying disabled Veteran may be granted an exemption of $70,465 (or the maximum amount granted under Section 2102 of Title 38 of the United States Code, as amended) from paying property taxes for state, county, municipal, and school purposes. The value of the homestead residence in excess of this exemption remains taxable. This exemption is extended to an unremarried surviving Spouse or minor Children. [O.C.G.A. § 48-5-48]
Homestead Exemption for Surviving Spouse of U.S. Service Member Any unremarried surviving Spouse of a member of the armed forces of the United States who was killed or died as a result of a war or armed conflict engaged in by the armed forces of the United States may be granted an exemption of $70,465 (or the maximum amount granted a disabled Veteran under Section 2102 of Title 38 of the United States Code, as amended) from paying property taxes for state, county, municipal, and school purposes. The value of the homestead residence in excess of this exemption amount remains taxable. Applicants filing for this exemption are required to file information relative to their marital status with the tax commissioner's office in the county of residence, along with any other information required by the county board of tax assessors.
Standard Homestead Exemption: The home of each resident of Georgia that is actually occupied and used as the primary residence by the owner may be granted a $2,000 exemption from state, county and school taxes except for school taxes levied by municipalities and except to pay interest on and to retire bonded indebtedness. The $2,000 is deducted from the 40% assessed value of the homestead. The owner of a dwelling house of a farm that is granted a homestead exemption may also claim a homestead exemption in participation with the program of rural housing under contract with the local housing authority. [O.C.G.A. § 48-5-44]
Individuals 65 Years of Age and Older May Claim an exemption from state tax on their home and 10 acres of land surrounding the home: Individuals 65 years of age or over may claim an exemption from all state ad valorem taxes on their home and up to 10 acres of land surrounding the home. Ad valorem tax for state purposes will be due on the assessed value of land that exceeds the 10 acre limitation. [O.C.G.A. § 48-5-48-3]
Individuals 65 Years of Age and Older May Claim a $4,000 Exemption: Individuals 65 years of age or over may claim a $4,000 exemption applied to the assessed value of their home before calculating state and county property taxes. The $4,000 exemption is deducted from the 40% assessed value of the homestead before the tax amount is calculated, but only if the net income of that person and his Spouse does not exceed $10,000 for the prior year. Social security income is excluded from net income and other retirement income is excluded up to a specified amount. The owner must notify the county tax commissioner if for any reason they no longer meet the requirements for this exemption. [O.C.G.A. § 48-5-47]
Abatement of State Income Taxes: Georgia law provides that service personnel who die as a result of wounds, disease, or injury incurred while serving in a combat zone as a member of the armed forces of the United States, are exempt from all Georgia income taxes for the taxable year of death, nor shall such taxes apply for any prior taxable year ending on or after the first day served in the combat zone. [O.C.G.A. § 48-7-37]
Sales Tax on Vehicles: A disabled Veteran who receives a VA grant for the purchase and special adapting of a vehicle is exempt from paying the state sales tax on the vehicle (only on the original grant) [O.C.G.A. § 48-8-3]
Ad Valorem Tax on Vehicles: Exempt are Veterans who are verified by the VA to be 100 percent totally and permanently service-connected disabled and Veterans who are receiving or who are entitled to receive statutory awards from VA for: (1) loss or permanent loss of use of one or both feet; (2) loss or permanent loss of use of one or both hands; (3) loss of sight in one or both eyes; or (4) permanent impairment of vision of both eyes to a prescribed degree. Exemption is granted on the vehicle the Veteran owns and upon which the free Disabled Veteran (DV) Motor Vehicle license plate is attached. [O.C.G.A. § 40-2-69]
Georgia Military Scholarship (GMS): This scholarship is worth $70,000 over four years. The State of Georgia offers forty-two scholarships per year to Georgia high school seniors who attend the University of North Georgia and commission as officers in the Georgia Army National Guard after graduating with a bachelor's degree. The scholarship pays for the recipient's room, meals, tuition, books, uniforms, and fees. In addition, the recipient receives National Guard weekend drill pay, GI Bill, pay for attending Army basic and advanced training, and Army ROTC contract pay (starting beginning of sophomore year). The recipient may also be eligible for an enlistment bonus and monthly GI Bill kicker. Effective 15 August 2005, GMS Scholarship recipients are non-deployable as long as they are enrolled and remain in good standing with North Georgia and the Georgia Army National Guard. Application information
Eligibility: To be eligible for this scholarship you must:
- Be a resident of Georgia.
- Receive a nomination from a state assembly member.
- Meet the academic requirements for, and gain regular admission, to North Georgia.
- Meet Army National Guard medical and physical standards.
- Agree to serve as an enlisted member in the Georgia Army National Guard while a Cadet at University of North Georgia.
- Agree to accept a commission upon graduation from North Georgia and serve four years as a commissioned officer in the Georgia Army National Guard.
Georgia HERO Scholarship: The Georgia HERO (Helping Educate Reservists and their Offspring) Scholarship Program was created to provide educational grant assistance to members of the Georgia National Guard and U.S. Military Reservists who served in combat zones or the Children of such members of the Georgia National Guard and U.S. Military Reserves. The grant is to attend an approved school for a maximum of up to four award years in the sum of $2,000.00 per award year. The maximum benefit is for four award years for a total of $8,000.00.
Eligibility: The following requirements apply to all categories of HERO Scholarship recipients:
- Must be enrolled or accepted for admission in an eligible Georgia college or university.
- Must meet Georgia residency requirements, as defined by GSFC.
- Must meet U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien requirements, as defined by GSFC.
- Must be in a matriculated status in an organized undergraduate program of study leading to a college degree, technical diploma, or technical certificate.
- Must not be obligated to pay a refund on a GSFC or Federal Title IV grant or scholarship. Must not be in default on a GSFC or Federal Title IV student educational loan.
- Must meet Federal Selective Service registration requirements.
- Must maintain Satisfactory Academic Progress in accordance with the Federal Title IV standards and practices of the institution.
- Must be in compliance with the Georgia Drug-Free Postsecondary Education Act of 1990.
In addition to the General Student Eligibility Requirements, a HERO Scholarship recipient must meet all of the specific requirements for one of the three following categories of students:
The eligible student must be a member of the Georgia National Guard or be a U.S. Military Reservist who completed at least one qualifying term of service. A qualifying term of service is defined as deployment overseas, on or after February 1, 2003, for active service to a location outside of the United States and its territories designed by the U.S. Department of Defense as a combat zone, for a cumulative period of at least 181 days.
The eligible student must be the biological Child, adoptive Child, or legal ward of a member of the Georgia National Guard or the U.S. Military Reserves who completed at least one qualifying term of service. The student must have been age 25 or younger during the qualifying term of service. A qualifying term of service is defined as deployment overseas, on or after February 1, 2003, for active service to a location outside of the United States and its territories designed by the U.S. Department of Defense as a combat zone, for a consecutive period of at least 181 days.
The eligible student must be the biological Child, adoptive Child, or legal ward of a member of the Georgia National Guard or the U.S. Military Reserves who was killed or received 100 percent disability as a result of injures received in an eligible combat zone. The student must have been age 25 or younger during the qualifying term of service. A qualifying term of service is defined as deployment overseas, on or after February 1, 2003, for active service to a location outside of the United States and its territories designed by the U.S. Department of Defense as a combat zone. There are no minimum days of service required for Category C.
Be a surviving Spouse of a member of the Georgia National Guard or U.S. Reserves who was killed in a combat zone or died as a result of injuries received in a combat zone. The member must have been deployed outside of the United States for active duty service on or after February 1, 2003 to a location designated as a combat zone. The surviving Spouse must file an application for the initial Georgia HERO Scholarship award prior to July 1, 2012 or not later that two calendar years following the death of the member, whichever is later, and no award can be issued later than six calendar years after the initial award was issued.
- Copy of DD214 military record or other acceptable military documentation for the Georgia National Guard member or the U.S. Military Reservist.
- Copy of the student's birth certificate, adoption document, or legal guardianship document. (Categories B and C only)
- Copy of death certificate. (Category C and D, if applicable)
- Copy of military record of injury. (Category C only, if applicable.)
Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children: It is the purpose of this compact to remove barriers to educational success imposed on Children of military Families because of frequent moves and deployment of their parents by:
- Facilitating the timely enrollment of Children of military Families and ensuring that they are not placed at a disadvantage due to difficulty in the transfer of educational records from the previous school district or variations in entrance or age requirements.
- Facilitating the student placement process through which Children of military Families are not disadvantaged by variations in attendance requirements, scheduling, sequencing, grading, course content or assessment. Facilitating the qualification and eligibility for enrollment, educational programs, and participation in extracurricular academic, athletic and social activities.
- Facilitating the on-time graduation of Children of military Families.
- Providing for the promulgation and enforcement of administrative rules implementing the provisions of this compact.
- Providing for the uniform collection and sharing of information between and among member states, schools and military Families under this compact.
- Promoting coordination between this compact and other compacts affecting military Children.
- Promoting flexibility and cooperation between the educational system, parents and the student in order to achieve educational success for the student.
Primary Point of Contact:
Col (Ret) Patricia Ross, Military Family Education Liaison
Address: 1800 Century Place, Suite 375, Atlanta, Georgia 30345
Employment Assistance: State employees receive 18 days of military leave per year.
Eligibility: Georgia National Guard Service member or Army Reserve member.
Employment Preference: The Veteran's Employment Preference gives eligible Veterans preference in appointment over many other applicants. Veterans' preference applies, to virtually all new appointments in both the competitive and excepted service. Veterans' preference does not guarantee Veterans a job and it does not apply to internal agency actions such as promotions, transfers, reassignments, and reinstatements. Only Veterans that are discharged or released from active duty in the armed forces under honorable conditions are eligible for Veterans' preference. This means you must have been discharged under an honorable or general discharge.
There two types of preference eligibility are non-disabled (5-point preference eligible) and disabled (10-point preference eligible).
You are a 5-point preference eligible if your active duty service meets any of the following:
- 180 or more consecutive days, any part of which occurred during the period beginning September 11, 2001 and ending on a future date prescribed by Presidential proclamation or law as the last date of Operation Iraqi Freedom, OR
- Between August 2, 1990 and January 2, 1992, OR
- 180 or more consecutive days, any part of which occurred after January 31, 1955 and before October 15, 1976.
- In a war, campaign or expedition for which a campaign badge has been authorized or between April 28, 1952 and July 1, 1955.
You are a 10-point preference eligible if you served at any time, and you:
- Have a service connected disability, OR
- Received a Purple Heart.
Business Certificate of Exemption: Disabled Veterans are exempt from payment of occupational taxes, administration fees, and regulatory fees imposed by local governments for peddling, conducting a business, or practicing a profession or semi profession upon meeting the following eligibility requirements: (1) be discharged under honorable conditions from the armed forces of the United States; (2) have 10 percent disability for certain wartime Veterans or a 25 percent service-connected disability for peace time-only Veterans; and (3) have an income that is not liable for state income taxes. [O.C.G.A. § 43-12-1 - § 43-12-4]
Operation Workforce: helps Veterans and employers connect within the state. The site allows Veterans to create a profile, upload a résumé, search and apply for job openings within the state of Georgia. It also allows Georgia employers to create profiles, post job listings, review job applicants and search the site for qualified candidates. Employers are able to sign a pledge of commitment to give enhanced hiring opportunities to Georgia's Veterans, and Veterans are able to find Veteran-friendly employers across the state. Operation Workforce will also allow Veterans to translate their military occupational classifications into civilian occupations that best align with their skill set and training.
Unemployment Insurance: Unemployment Insurance (UI) program provides temporary income for workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own and who are either looking for another job, have a definite recall to their jobs within 6 weeks of the last day worked, or are in approved training. The funding for UI benefits comes from taxes paid by employers. Workers do not pay any costs. Eligibility for benefits is determined based on past wages, reason for job separation, and availability and job search requirements. Claims are effective on the date they are filed and are not retroactive to the last day worked. Unemployment claims can be filed in person at any Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) career center or by Internet from any computer with appropriate Internet access.
When filing a claim, you should have:
- Your social security number, as a claim cannot be filed without a social security number
- Valid government-issued picture identification
- Employer-issued separation notice or letter, if available
- Names, addresses, and dates of employment of all employers for the last 18 months
- Alien number and expiration date for non-citizens
- SF-50 or SF-8 form and paystubs for federal employment in the last two years
- Most recent DD-214, orders to report or of release, military earnings/leave statement, or W-2 form(s) for former military personnel
- Personal banking account and routing number for direct deposit
- A copy of your most recently filed income tax return or quarterly estimated income tax payment record(s), if applying for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) and you are self-employed or a farmer
Unemployment claims can be filed in person at any Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) Career Center or by Internet from any computer with appropriate Internet access. Use the (GDOL) Interactive Voice Response System, OLIVoR, to access locations of GDOL Career Centers, establish a PIN for unemployment insurance, claim weekly unemployment benefits, or inquire about weekly unemployment payment. The OLIVoR telephone number is 1-866-598-4164
Active Military and Dependents License Renewal via Mail: Military personnel on active duty can request a Georgia driver's license/ID card renewal through the mail.
The same privilege is also extended to a military person's spouse and any licensed dependents or ID card holders living with the person who is on duty in a foreign domain or in a state other than Georgia. Application
Free Licenses for Veterans and Honorary License for Spouse: Qualified Veterans are eligible for a free driver's license. The free driver's license can be issued for regular or long term. Qualified Veterans must submit an original Certificate of Eligibility (DS-516), approved by the Georgia Department of Veteran Services.
Applicants age 59 years or older must renew the driver's license every five (5) years. Successful completion of the vision exam is required at each renewal after age 64.
The Spouse of a disabled honorably separated Veteran who does not have a driver's license or the unmarried Spouse of a deceased honorably separated Veteran is entitled to the same driver's license available to the Veteran. Applicant must submit an original Certificate of Eligibility (DS-516) approved by the Georgia Department of Veteran Services.
Eligibility: To obtain the Certificate of Eligibility (DS-516), submit the following documents to the State Department of Veteran Services.
Veterans - Present your separation papers (DD-214), declaring the following:
- Actual Wartime Service*
- Honorable Discharge
- Applicant must be a resident of the state of Georgia, either at the time of entry into service or at least 2 consecutive years preceding date of application
Unmarried Surviving Spouse - Present the death certificate of deceased Spouse with the separation papers (DD-214).
*Activation for training purposes does not qualify an individual for a Georgia Veterans Driver's License.
Handicapped Parking: If a disabled Veteran's license plate from Georgia, or any other state, is properly displayed on the Veteran's vehicle, the Veteran is authorized to park in parking areas designated for the handicapped without obtaining special handicapped parking area permits.
National Guard Free License: All members or former members of the Georgia National Guard, who have 20 or more years of creditable service, are entitled to a free Veteran's license by submitting a document of certification stating the applicant's eligibility. The Certificate of eligibility must be obtained from the Adjutant General of the State of Georgia and brought into any Customer Service Center to have a driver's license issued.
A distinctive driver's license can be issued to any member of the Georgia National Guard in good standing and who has completed at least one year of satisfactory service by submitting a certificate of eligibility (DS-318). This driver's license is renewable during the time of service in the National Guard or until 20 years of service has been obtained which entitles you to a Veteran's License. The Certificate of eligibility (DS-318) must be obtained from the local National Guard Commanding Officer and brought into any Customer Service Center to have a driver's license issued.
Disabled Veteran (Free) Service-Connected License Plate: Disabled Veteran tag is provided free of charge to a disabled Veteran who has a letter from the Veterans Administration or a card issued by the Georgia Veterans Services. The letter is required for first time applicants stating the applicant is 100% disabled (service connected). Upon the death of the Veteran, the surviving Spouse may request/retain the tag provided they do not remarry. To request/retain the tag, a certified copy of the Veteran's death certificate and Marriage License is required. Only one additional tag can be purchased by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee. Cost to purchase first tag: $0. Cost to renew first tag annually: $0.
Disabled Veteran (Free) Motorcycle License Plate: Disabled Veteran motorcycle tags are provided free of charge to a disabled Veteran who has a letter from the Veterans Administration or a card issued by the Georgia Veterans Services. The letter is required for first time applicants stating the applicant is 100% disabled (service connected). Upon death of the Veteran, the surviving Spouse may continue to receive the free special license plates and revalidation decals until the death of the surviving Spouse. A set of plates with the same number will be issued for the vehicle. Only one additional set of plates will be issued.
Former Prisoner of War (POW) License Plate: One free license plate will be issued free to any Veteran who is a former POW, who was discharged under honorable conditions, and who is a legal resident of Georgia. A second plate may be purchased at the cost of $25.00 plus $20.00 annual registration fee. Upon the death of the Veteran, the surviving Spouse may request/retain the tag provided they do not remarry. To request/retain the tag, a certified copy of the Veteran's death certificate, DD 214, and Marriage License is required.
Purple Heart Army License Plate: Recipients of the Purple Heart medal are entitled to one free license plate.
- Former Military (Veterans, Retired): DD-214 required or in the case of a retired Reserve member, you must furnish approved documentation supporting the current retired membership status from that reserve unit.
- Active Military: If you are an active duty member, a copy of the approved documentation supporting your current membership in the respective reserve or National Guard unit is required.
Only one additional plate can be obtained by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee. The ownership of this tag cannot be relinquished. Upon the death of the Veteran, the surviving Spouse may request/retain the tag provided they do not remarry. To request/retain the tag, a certified copy of the Veterans Death Certificate, Marriage Certificate and Form DD-214 are required.
Pearl Harbor Survivor License Plate: Survivors of Pearl Harbor are eligible for one free auto tag. Only one additional plate can be obtained by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee.
Eligibility: A copy of Form DD-214 reflecting qualifying service is required.
The surviving Spouse of Veterans of the Armed Forces of the United States who survived the attack on Pearl Harbor may request/retain the license plate as long as they do not re-marry. DD-214, Death Certificate, and Marriage License required.
Veteran Army License Plate: Army Veterans are eligible for one free auto tag. Only one additional plate can be obtained by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee. The ownership of this tag cannot be relinquished. Upon the death of the Veteran, the surviving Spouse may request/retain the tag provided they do not remarry. To request/retain the tag, a certified copy of the Veterans Death Certificate, Marriage Certificate and Form DD-214 are required.
National Guard License Plate: National Guard Service members are eligible for one free auto tag. Only one additional plate can be obtained by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00.
Eligibility: All current or retired Georgia National Guard Service members. Required annually is a current dated letter from Commanding Officer.
Reserve Army License Plate: Army Reserve members are eligible for one free auto tag.
Eligibility: All current or retired US Army Reserve members are eligible for one free auto tag. Current dated letter from Commanding Officer and Drivers License Number are required. Only one additional tag active or retired may be issued at $70.00.
Retired Army License Plate: Retired Army members are eligible for one free auto tag. Only one additional plate can be obtained by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee. A copy of Form DD-214 reflecting service is required.
Gold Star Family License Plate: The first plate issued to the Spouse, Mother and Father of a fallen Soldier is free. Additional plates can be issued to the Spouse, Mother and Father or the first plate and additional plates issued to siblings, Children, Stepparents, by paying the $25.00 manufacturing fee (one-time fee) plus $20.00 annual registration fee. Required Documents: Copy of the DEERS (Department of Eligibility and Enrollment Services) Report dated prior to the death of the fallen Service member. If the DEERS report is not immediately available, please provide a copy of the fallen Service member's obituary published within two years after the Service member's death, listing the eligible Family member's full name. The Gold Star license plate shall not be transferred except to a vehicle subsequently purchased by the eligible Family member.
Commemorative Service License Plate: Anyone who served during active military combat is eligible for a free commemorative service license plate if he/she is Georgia resident on active duty or a Veteran with a discharge from the armed forces of the United States under honorable conditions. The surviving Spouse of a qualified deceased active duty member or Veteran is also eligible as long as he/she does not remarry.
There is no registration fee, manufacturing fee, or annual registration fee for this specialty plate. An applicant is also entitled to one additional specialty plate upon payment of a $25 manufacturing fee. Applicants will also be required to pay a $25 annual registration fee for the additional specialty plate.
Qualifying service during active military combat includes active duty service during:
- World War II
- Korean War
- Operation Desert Storm
- Global War on Terrorism (as defined by Presidential Executive Order 13289, Section 2)
- War in Iraq
- War in Afghanistan
Military Medal Award License Plate: Anyone whose service during active military combat resulted in the award of one of the qualifying medals may be eligible for a free military medal ward specialty license plate if he/she is a Georgia resident on active duty, or a Veteran with a discharge from the armed forces of the United States under honorable conditions.
The surviving Spouse of a qualified deceased active duty member or Veteran is also eligible as long as he/she does not remarry. There is no registration fee, manufacturing fee, or annual registration fee for this specialty plate. Applicants are also entitled to one additional specialty plate upon payment of a $25 manufacturing fee. Applicants will also be required to pay a $25 annual registration fee for the additional specialty plate.
Qualifying medals for the military award specialty license plate include:
- Medal of Honor
- Distinguished Service Cross
- Defense Distinguished Service Medal
- Homeland Security Service Medal
- Distinguished Service Medal
- Silver Star
- Defense Superior Service Medal
- Legion of Merit
- Distinguished Flying Cross
- Bronze Star
- Air Medal
Click here for additional Military plates that are available.
Medical Benefits: Actual medical expenses and/or loss of wages are paid by worker's compensation for State Active Duty National Guard members.
Eligibility: Georgia National Guard Service members on State Active Duty.
Group Insurance: Georgia Insurance Trust (GIT) offers low cost group insurance to Guard members and former Guard members in increments of $10,000.00 up to $50,000.00. The GIT also allows the Spouse and dependent Children to be covered under this plan.
Eligibility: Any Georgia National Guard Service member that is within the ninety (90) days after joining the National Guard may enroll prior to the 91st day after joining, without furnishing evidence of insurability. If a member does not apply within the ninety (90) day period after joining the National Guard, the member may still apply, but the Company reserves the right to accept or reject the application.
Workers Compensation: National Guard Service members on State Active Duty receive Worker's Compensation.
Eligibility: Georgia National Guard member.
Injury and Death Benefits: State Active Duty National Guard members receive pay, allowance, medical expenses for 90 days. If the Soldier is or remains disabled after 90 days, benefits become the same as Federal benefits including death gratuity, Widows pension & funeral expenses up to $500.00.
Eligibility: Georgia National Guard Service member.
One-Time Honorary Veterans Hunting and Fishing License: A free hunting and fishing license issued once for military Veterans discharged on or after July, 1 2005. The Honorary Veterans License will be valid for 12 months from the date of issue. It covers all recreational hunting and fishing licenses (except Federal Duck Stamp). This specifically includes: Alligator, Hunting, Primitive Weapons, Big Game, WMA, Georgia Waterfowl Conservation, Fishing, and Trout licenses. It does not include commercial licenses. Click here for application. [O.C.G.A. § 27-2-4 (g) (1)-(2)]
Eligibility: Applicants for the Honorary Veterans License must be military Veterans who meet all of the following criteria:
- Have not previously received this license.
- Served on active Federal duty for 90 or more days.
- Discharge date is July 1, 2005 or later (Veterans discharged before July 1, 2005 are not eligible for this license).
- Currently reside in Georgia.
3 Year Disability Hunting & Fishing License: Resident Disability Licenses are full privilege sportsman's licenses, and include all state paid recreational hunting and fishing privileges. This free license is available only to Georgia residents, and is good for three years. It can be renewed before expiration by sending documents showing continued disability. The Disability License includes hunting, big game, Wildlife Management Area (WMA), alligator, Georgia waterfowl conservation, salt and freshwater fishing and mountain trout licenses. [O.C.G.A. § 27-2-4 (a)]
Eligibility: A Veteran may receive an honorary license provided he/she is permanently and totally disabled so as to prevent gainful employment, and provided the certification of 100% disability is made by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Click here for application.
Disabled Veteran Admission to Georgia State Parks: Disabled Veterans who are Georgia residents and present a Certificate of Eligibility from their Veterans Benefits Coordinator are entitled to a 25% discount on Annual Park Passes, Individual or Family Friends Memberships, individual accommodations, recreation fees such as mini-golf and boat rental, golf fees and historic site admission. When making online reservations, the full fee will be charged to your credit card. Upon check-in and presenting proof of eligibility, you will be reimbursed for your discount.
Active Duty and Retired Military Admission to Georgia State Parks: Active duty and retired military who are Georgia residents are entitled to a 25% discount on the daily or Annual Park Pass. ID must be shown.
State Park Entrance Fee Reduction: Veterans with a discharge from the armed forces of the United States under honorable conditions and a rating by the VA for a service-connected disability are eligible for a 25 percent reduction of the entrance fee to state parks, historical sites, and recreational areas, if they are Georgia residents.
In order to apply for a state park discount card, qualified Veterans should take a copy of their military discharge certificate (DD Form 214), verification of a VA service-connected disability, and proof of residency to a GDVS Veterans Field Service Office. A Veterans Field Service Officer will verify eligibility and forward the application to the GDVS Central Office. Applicants will receive their state park discount card in the mail. [O.C.G.A. § 12-3-9.1]
Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home (GWVNH): The Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home is a 192-bed skilled nursing care facility located adjacent to the Medical College of Georgia Hospital and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Augusta. It is operated under an interagency agreement with the Medical College of Georgia. The primary purpose of the facility is to provide care to the aged and infirm Georgia Veterans. The GWVNH also serves as a teaching facility to acquaint medical and allied health students with medical conditions and diseases that confront the aged. This provides the student with practical experience and helps them gain expertise in treating the elderly.
Georgia War Veterans Home: The Georgia War Veterans Home, situated on approximately 17 acres in Milledgeville, is a 375-bed facility licensed and certified by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to provide skilled nursing care to aged and infirm Georgia war Veterans. The home operated three skilled nursing care facilities in 2013, which included the Richard B. Russell Building with 86 budgeted beds; the Joe T Wood Building with 140 budgeted beds; and the Alzheimer's Wing of the Pete Wheeler Building with 24 budgeted beds.
Cemeteries: Any member of the Armed Forces who is a Veteran under the rules established by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and was separated under other than dishonorable conditions, is eligible for burial in the Georgia Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Milledgeville or in the Georgia Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Glennville. There is no charge for the gravesite, vault, marker, or use of the committal chapel for interment service for an eligible Veteran or Spouse/eligible Family member. All costs for a casket, preparation of the body for burial, and other funeral costs (transportation, use of funeral home, minister, etc.) must be arranged through a funeral home of your choice and paid for by the Veteran, the Veteran's estate, or survivors.
- A Veteran under the rules established by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and separated under other than dishonorable conditions.
- A member of the Reserves/National Guard who was eligible for retirement pay at the time of death or would have been entitled to retired pay but for the fact that they were not at least 60 years of age.
- A member of the U.S. Armed Forces or a reserve component of the U.S. Armed Forces, who died in the line of duty while on active duty, or active duty for training.
- An eligible Veteran's Spouse may be interred in the same plot as the Veteran at GVMC. A copy of the marriage certificate is required.
- An eligible Veteran's dependent (unmarried, under age 21, or life-long dependency on the Veteran) is eligible for burial at GVMC. Documentation of eligibility is required.
- A copy of the Veteran's DD 214 or other documentation verifying active military service must be furnished.
Veteran's ID Card: A Veteran who meets the eligibility and residence requirements for a free Veteran's driver's license and still cannot obtain one may be eligible for a free Veteran's ID card. A Veteran is not eligible for a Georgia ID card if he/she possesses a valid driver's license from another state. [O.C.G.A. § 40-5-103]
Eligibility: In order to obtain a free Veteran's ID card, the applicant should take proof of his/her qualifying service and residency to a Georgia Department of Veterans Service field office. A Field Service Officer will verify his/her eligibility and issue a completed Certificate of Eligibility (DS-516). A Veteran is not eligible for a Georgia ID card if he/she possesses a valid driver's license from another state.
Honorary ID Card: The Spouse of a disabled Veteran who meets the eligibility and residency requirements for a free Veteran's driver's license and still cannot obtain one may be eligible for a free honorary ID card.
The surviving Spouse of a Veteran who met the eligibility and residency requirements for a free Veteran's driver's license may be eligible for a free honorary ID card as long as he/she does not remarry.
A Spouse or surviving Spouse is not eligible for a Georgia ID card if he/she possesses a valid driver's license from another state. For clarification regarding eligibility qualifications, please refer to the eligibility and residence requirements listed under the Veteran's Driver's License section.
In order to obtain a free honorary ID card, the Spouse or surviving Spouse should take proof of qualifying service and residency to a Georgia Department of Veterans Service field office. A Field Service Officer will verify his/her eligibility and issue a completed Certificate of Eligibility (DS-516).
The Spouse or surviving Spouse should take the completed Certificate of Eligibility to a Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) office, along with documentation of his/her identity, residential address, full social security number, and U.S. citizenship or proof of lawful presence in the United States. A DDS representative will verify his/her eligibility, and issue a free honorary ID card. For more information, visit dds.ga.gov; or call 678-413-8400 inside the Metro Atlanta area; or 866-754-3687 inside Georgia, but outside the Metro Atlanta area. [O.C.G.A. § 40-5-103]
Motor Fuel Service to Handicapped: When there is an option on the price of fuel at a full-service/self-service facility, a station employee, upon request will dispense fuel at the lower price from the self-service pump into vehicles bearing DV license tags if: (1) the handicapped/disabled Veteran is driving the vehicle into which fuel is to be dispensed; and (2) the Veteran is not accompanied by a person at least 16 years of age who is not blind or has impaired mobility. [O.C.G.A. § 10-1-164.1]
Guardianship: The Uniform Guardianship Act provides for appointment of a guardian for incompetent Veterans and for Veterans' Children when VA benefits are involved. These appointments are made on the basis of certificates issued only by VA. [O.C.G.A. § 29-7-1 - § 29-7-17]
Vital Statistics: Veterans, dependents, or Veterans' organizations, may obtain copies of marriage, divorce, birth, and death documents without charge through GDVS, provided the copies are to be used for establishing disability or death claims, and the request is in writing. [O.C.G.A. § 38-1-1]
Military Commissary Access: If you have been rated as 100% disabled by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for a service-connected disability, you are eligible to shop in military commissaries and exchanges once you obtain the proper ID card. In order to get an ID card, applicants will need to obtain a verification letter from the Department of Veterans Affairs and take it to the ID card section of a military installation.
Veterans Health Administration
VA Medical Centers
Augusta: Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center, 950 15th St, Downtown or 1 Freedom Way, Uptown, 706-733-0188
Decatur: Atlanta VA Medical Center, 1670 Clairmont Rd, 404-321-6111
Dublin: Carl Vinson VA Medical Center, 1826 Veterans Blvd, 478-272-1210
Athens: Athens Clinic, 9249 Highway 29 North, 706-227-4534 / Fax: 706-227-4538
Carrolton: Trinka Davis Veterans Village, 180 Martin Dr, 404-321-6111 x2156 / 2157
Decatur: Decatur Clinic, 755 Commerce Dr, 2nd Fl, 404-417-5200 / Fax: 404-417-5204
Hinesville: Hinesville Clinic, 500 East Oglethorpe Hwy, 912-408-2900
Rome: Rome Outreach Clinic, 30 Chateau Dr, SE, 706-235-6581 / Fax: 706-291-3753
Community Based Outpatient Clinics
Albany: Albany Clinic, 814 Radford Blvd, Bldg 7000, 229-446-9000 Atlanta: Fort McPherson/East Point CBOC, 1701 Hardee Ave, SW, 404-321-6111 x2222 / Fax: 404-327-4948
Austell: Austell VA CBOC, 2041 Mesa Valley Way, 404-329-2222 / Fax: 770-948-3276
Blairsville: Blairsville CBOC, 1294 Highway 515 East, Suite 100, 404-329-2222 / Fax: 404-417-1595
Brunswick: Brunswick, 1111 Glynco Pkwy, Bldg 2, Suite 200, 912-261-2355
Columbus: Columbus Clinic, 1310 13th Ave, 706-257-7205
Flowery Branch: NE Georgia/Oakwood CBOC, 4175 Tanners Creek Dr, 404-728-8210 / Fax: 404-728-8229
Kathleen: Perry Outreach Clinic, 2370 S Houston Lake Rd, 478-224-1309 / Fax: 478-224-1316
Lawrenceville: Lawrenceville Clinic, 455 Philip Blvd, Suite 200, 404-329-2222 / Fax: 404-417-1708
Macon: Macon Clinic, 5398 Thomaston Road, Suite B, 478-476-8868 / Fax: 478-476-8161
Milledgeville: Milledgeville Community Based Outpatient Clinic, 2249 Carl Vinson Hwy, 478-414-4540 / Fax: 478-414-4575
Newnan: Newnan CBOC, 39-A Oak Hill Ct, 404-329-2222 / Fax: 404-417-2910
Savannah: Savannah Clinic, 325 West Montgomery Crossroad, 912-920-0214
St Marys: St Marys CBOC, 205 Lakeshore Point, 912-510-3420 / Fax: 912-510-3425
Statesboro: Statesboro Clinic, 950 15th Street Downtown, or 1 Freedom Way Uptown, 706-733-0188
Stockbridge: Stockbridge CBOC, 175 Medical Blvd, 404-329-2222 / Fax: 404-728-5096
Valdosta: Valdosta CBOC, 2841 N Patterson St, 229-293-0132 / Fax: 229-293-0162
Waycross: Waycross Clinic, 515B City Blvd, 912-279-4400 / Fax: 912-279-4448
Vet Center - 877-927-8387
Atlanta: Atlanta Vet Center, 1800 Phoenix Blvd, Bldg 400, Suite 404, Box 55, 404-370-3864 / Fax: 770-907-0674
Augusta: Augusta Vet Center, 2050 Walton Way, Suite 100, 706-729-5762 / Fax: 706-736-2417
Augusta: Richmond County (Augusta), 2050 Walton Way, Suite 100, 706-729-5762 / Fax: 706-736-2417
Columbus: Muscogee County (Columbus) Vet Center, 2601 Cross Country Dr, Condominium B-2 Suite 900, 706-596-7170 / Fax: 706-568-7630
Lawrenceville: Lawrenceville Vet Center, 930 River Centre Place, 404-728-4195 / Fax: 770-963-6393
Macon: Macon Vet Center, 750 Riverside Dr, 478-477-3813 / Fax: 478-746-7023
Marietta: Marietta Vet Center, 40 Dodd St, Suite 700, 404-327-4954 / Fax: 770-419-1314
Savannah: Savannah Vet Center, 321 Commercial Dr, 912-961-5800 / Fax: 478-274-5751
Waycross: Waycross Community Based Outreach Clinic, 515B City Blvd, 912-279-4400 / Fax: 912-279-4448
Duluth: VISN7: VA Southeast Network, 3700 Crestwood Pkwy, Suite 500, 678-924-5700
Veterans Benefits Administration
Regionals Benefit Office
Decatur: Atlanta Regional Benefit Office, 1700 Clairmont Rd, 1-800-827-1000
Intake Site (Pre-Discharge Claims Assistance)
Fort Benning: Fort Benning, Dept of VA, Bldg 2751, 6520 Marchant Ave
Fort Gordon: Fort Gordon, Dept of VA, Bldg 33800
Fort Stewart: Fort Stewart/Hunter Army Airfield, Audie Murphy Soldier Center (3 ID Welcome Center)
Kings Bay: Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base, Fleet & Family Support Center, Naval 1063 USS Tennessee Ave, Bldg 1051
National Cemetery Administration
Memorial Service Network
Decatur: Atlanta Memorial Service Network, 1700 Clairmont Rd, 4th Fl, 404-929-5899 / Fax: 404-929-5900
Canton: Georgia National Cemetery, 1080 Scott Hudgens Dr, 866-236-8159 / 770-479-9300 / Fax: 770-479-9311
Marietta: Marietta National Cemetery, 500 Washington Ave, 866-236-8159 / Fax: 770-479-9311
Military Installations in Georgia
Georgia Air National Guard
Document Review Date: 27 April 2015