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Alabama Military Resource Locator
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Summary Alabama Military and Veterans Benefits: Alabama offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans including State Tax benefits, Property Tax Exemptions, Alabama National Guard Tuition Scholarship Program, Education and Tuition Assistance, Vehicle Tags, Preference in State Classified Employment as well as Hunting and Fishing License privileges. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component, and Veteran disability status.
Alabama Military and Veterans State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility
Alabama Retired Military Pay Income Tax Exemption: All compensation received as retirement benefits by any person retired from the military service of the United States of America and survivor benefits derived there from are hereby exempt from any state, county or municipal income tax or similar tax. ( Ala. Code § 40-18-20 )
Who is eligible for the Alabama Retired Military Pay Income Tax Exemption? Military retirees in receipt of retirement pay are eligible for the exemption.
Alabama Income Tax Exemption for Military Combat Pay: Money paid by the United States to a person as compensation for active service as a member of the Armed Forces of the United States in a combat zone shall not be subject to income taxes levied by the State of Alabama for the calendar year 1965 or any subsequent year.
Who is eligible for the Alabama Income Tax Exemption for Military Combat Pay? Service members receiving pay in a combat zone that has been designated by executive order of the President of the United States ( Code of Alabama 1974, Section 40-18-3 ) are eligible for the income tax exemption.
Alabama State Taxes on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Military Disability Retired Pay: Disability retirement payments (and other benefits) paid by the Veterans Administration. are exempt from Alabama taxes.
Military Disability Retirement Pay received as a pension, annuity or similar allowance for personal injury or sickness resulting from active service in the Armed Forces should not be included in taxable income if any of the following conditions apply:
You were entitled to receive a disability payment before September 25, 1975
You were a member of the military (active or reserves) or were under a binding written commitment to become a member on September 24, 1975
You receive disability payments for a combat-related injury. This is a personal injury or sickness that:
Resulted directly from armed conflict
Took place while you were engaged in extra-hazardous service
Took place under conditions simulating, including training exercises such as maneuvers, or
Was caused by an instrumentality of war
You would be entitled to receive disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if you filed an application for it (the exclusion under this condition equals the amount you would be entitled to from the VA).
Alabama State Taxes on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation: U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation is exempt from Alabama Income tax.
Alabama Department of Revenue Income Tax Exemptions
Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) is a tax-free monetary benefit paid to eligible survivors of military Service members who died in the line of duty or eligible survivors of Veterans whose death resulted from a service-related injury or disease.
Military Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP)/ Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan (RCSBP)/ Retired Serviceman’s Family Protection Plan (RSFPP) Alabama State Tax Benefits: All compensation received as retirement benefits by any person retired from the military service of the United States of America and survivor benefits derived there from are hereby exempt from any state, county or municipal income tax or similar tax. ( Ala. Code § 40-18-20 )
Alabama Homestead tax Exemption for the Resident over age 65, Blind or Totally Disabled: ( 2019 Code of Alabama, Section 40-9-21(a) ) The homesteads of residents of Alabama who are over sixty-five (65) years of age; retired due to permanent and total disability, regardless of age; or blind, regardless of age or whether such person is retired; shall be exempt from all state ad valorem taxes.
A homestead is defined as a single-Family owner-occupied dwelling and the land thereto, not exceeding 160 acres. The property owner may be entitled to a homestead exemption if they own a single-Family residence and occupy it as their primary residence on the first day of the tax year for which they are applying.
Alabama Department of Revenue, Memorandum Clarifying Exemption for Permanently and Totally Disabled
Homes of Veterans or Unremarried Surviving Spouses acquired under a Special Adapted Housing Grant are Exempt from Ad Valorem Taxes: The home of any Veteran which is or was acquired by the provisions of Public Law 702, 80th Congress (specially adapted housing grant) as amended by (38 USC) regardless of its value shall be exempt from all ad valorem taxation.
Who is eligible for Homes of Veterans or Unremarried Surviving Spouses, acquired under a Special Adapted Housing Grant Ad Valorem Tax Exemption? The home is exempt so long as it is owned and occupied as a home by such Veteran or his Unremarried Surviving Spouse.
Motor Vehicles Paid for by U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Grant is Exempt from all License Fees and Ad Valorem Taxes: Vehicles that have been all or partly paid for with funds furnished by the VA are entitled to exemptions from all license fees and ad valorem taxes on such motor vehicle provided the Veteran keeps the vehicle only for private use. ( Code of Alabama 2019, Section 40-12-254 )
Who is eligible for License Fees and Ad Valorem Taxes exemption for Motor Vehicles Paid for By U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Grants? Any disabled Veteran of WWII or of any hostilities in which the United States was, is, or shall be engaged against any foreign state who owns such a vehicle paid all or partly from VA funds.
Alabama National Guard Education Assistance Program: The Alabama National Guard Education Assistance Program (ANGEAP) provides tuition assistance to eligible National Guard Service members.
The current award amount per semester is $5406. Only 10% of the yearly appropriated funds are designated for Graduate reimbursements.
ANGEAP will cover only the remaining balance of tuition and fees that are not otherwise covered by any VA benefits received by the student.
Award amount per semester (Fall, Spring, Summer) not to exceed the average cost of tuition per semester of a state-supported Alabama four-year institution. This award amount will be determined annually by July 31st by the Alabama Commission on Higher Education based upon institutional tuition increases and the annual program appropriation each year.
Veteran’s educational benefits (Montgomery GI Bill, Chapter 1607, Post 9/11 and Tuition Assistance) that are received by the applicant are to be deducted (Section II, Item D of the ANGEAP application) in determining amount applicant is eligible to receive.
Federal Pell grant, work-study and student loans are not to be included as deductions for ANGEAP eligibility.
Students shall take the necessary steps to utilize the above benefits, but only VA and Tuition Assistance benefits will be deducted from the ANGEAP calculations
ANGEAP will reimburse for tuition and fees only. Qualifying tuition are classes or courses that counts towards the individual’s certificate plan or declared program of study. Books and supplies are no longer covered. All payments will be made at the end of each semester.
All applicants (Undergraduates and Postgraduates) must have a completed FAFSA on file to ensure students are aware of all educational benefits available.
Applicants must be enrolled in a degree or certificate program in any community, technical college under the authority of the Alabama Community College System Board of Trustees, or enrolled pursuing 1st undergraduate or post-graduate degree in an accredited college or university within the state.
Who is eligible for the Alabama National Guard Education Assistance Program? To be eligible for an ANGEAP award the student must be:
17 years of age or over
Active member in good standing with the Alabama National Guard
Active member of a federally recognized unit of the Alabama National Guard
Have completed basic training
Pursuing the first undergraduate program Enrolled in a certificate or degree program at an accredited community college or technical college within the State of Alabama
Enrolled in a degree program at an accredited college or university within the State of Alabama
Maintain a cumulative 2.00 GPA Undergraduate: 3.00 GPA Graduate at end of each semester
Must have the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file
Must demonstrate a financial need of at least $100.00.
Alabama G. I. Dependents' Scholarship Program: The State of Alabama offers varying duration scholarships for eligible dependents of resident Alabama disabled Veterans. A dependent is defined as a Child, stepchild, Spouse or the un-remarried Surviving Spouse of the Veteran.
Children and stepchildren of qualified Veterans may receive five standard academic years (10 semesters)
Spouses or un-remarried Surviving Spouses of a Veteran rated as 100% permanently and totally disabled are entitled to five standard academic years (10 semesters).
Spouses or un-remarried Surviving Spouses of a Veteran rated 40-90% disabled are entitled to three standard academic years (6 semesters).
These scholarships are available for use at any Alabama State-supported institution of higher learning or a prescribed course of study at any state–supported technical college to be used for undergraduate courses of study at the in-state tuition rate.
Beginning with applications received at the Alabama Department Headquarters office with a postmark dated on or after July 31, 2017, tuition will be limited to the Department of Defense Tuition Assistance Cap (currently $250 per semester hour) and required textbooks and applicable fees will be limited to a combined $1,000 total per student for each semester. Schools may waive any overages of these charges at their discretion. All scholarships and grants must be applied to education expenses first (unless otherwise proscribed by state law) and the Alabama G.I. Dependent Scholarship Program will be applied for any applicable remaining charges pursuant to current state law.
Who is eligible for the Alabama G. I. Dependents' Scholarship Program? The Veteran must meet the qualifications listed below to establish eligibility of their dependents.
Military Service: The Veteran must have honorably served at least 90 days of continuous active federal military service or been honorably discharged by reason of service-connected disability after serving less than 90 days of continuous active federal military service.
Disability Requirements: Beginning July 31, 2017 Veterans must be rated 40% or more due to service-connected disabilities or have held the qualifying rating at the time of death, be a former prisoner of war (POW), declared missing in action (MIA), died as the result of a service-connected disability rating or died while on active military service in the line of duty.
Veterans with a disability rating of 20-30% may qualify if the effective date of their disability rating is on or before July 31, 2017. This provision will expire on July 31, 2023.
Veterans whose disability rating is less than 20% prior to May 23, 2017 but who had a claim for compensation pending prior to that date which resulted in a final award by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs of at least 20% may be eligible if the dependent applies for benefits within six months of that final adjudication.
Veteran Residency Requirements: (Veterans must qualify under at least one of the following two requirements).
Permanent civilian resident for at least one year immediately prior to initial entry into federal active military service or any subsequent entry into federal active military service where a 12-month break in service occurred. And one of the following:
Current resident for at least two years immediately prior to the date of this application or date of Veteran’s death; or
Current resident who was discharged within the last 12 months; or
Filed a resident Alabama income tax return for the past 10 consecutive years.
Bona fide permanent resident for at least five years immediately prior to the date of this application or the date of the Veteran’s death. Applies to 100% permanent and total ratings only.
Student Requirements: As of July 31, 2017, Students applying for benefits for the first time must meet all of the following:
Must be a current resident of the state of Alabama at the time of application; and
Must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) for each year that they are covered under the Alabama G.I. Dependent Scholarship Program; and
Must comply with Standards of Satisfactory Academic Progress (SAP) as defined by their education institution; and
Must complete a Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) release form for each educational institution that they attend to authorize the release of personally identifiable information required to determine continued eligibility and as required for necessary reporting.
Age Deadline: The Child or stepchild must initiate training under this program prior to their 26th birthday. In certain situations, a Child or stepchild may be eligible for the program up to the age of 30. If the applicant is a stepchild, the Veteran and the stepchild’s parent must be legally married prior to the Child’s 19th birthday.
Application Assistance: The Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs maintains offices throughout the state which can furnish information and assist you in filing your application. To find your nearest Veterans Service Office, visit the Veterans Service Office Locator Page for contact options.
Alabama G.I. Dependents Scholarship Program Pamphlet
Alabama Tuition Waiver for Purple Heart Medal Recipients: Public institutions of higher learning in the State of Alabama, including two-year and four-year postsecondary technical colleges, community colleges, and junior colleges, may waive tuition and fees for recipients of the Purple Heart Medal for undergraduate studies. Contact the public institution that the recipient plans to attend for more information. ( Ala. Code § 16-1-43 )