Massachusetts Military and Veterans Benefits

State Taxes
Education Benefits
Employment Benefits 
Unemployment Compensation
Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) Benefits
Health and Insurance Benefits
Parks and Recreation Benefits
Miscellaneous Benefits
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Facilities
Massachusetts Military Resource Locator
Resources

Summary of Massachusetts Military and Veterans Benefits: Massachusetts offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans including a state bonus program, state annuities, state employment hiring preference for Veterans, prisoners of war, and National Guard members, property tax exemptions, education and tuition assistance, vehicle tags, as well as hunting and fishing license privileges. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component, and Veteran disability status.

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Massachusetts Military and Veteran State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility

What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran State Tax Benefits?

Massachusetts State Tax Benefits for those in a Combat Zone: The Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR) follows the federal rules for granting an extension of time to file income tax returns and to pay taxes due for those serving in a combat zone, or who are hospitalized as a result of such service, during the period designated as the period of combatant activities. This extension applies to members of the Armed Forces, as well as individuals serving in support of the Armed Forces, serving in a combat zone. The extension period is for the time of service in the combat zone area or hospitalization attributable to such service plus 180 days. The extension of time to file returns also applies to Spouses of personnel serving in combat areas if a joint return is filed.

Certain combat pay of military personnel serving in a combat zone is excluded from federal gross income and therefore is not subject to federal income tax. Massachusetts income tax law incorporates the provisions of the Federal Tax Code, so that combat pay will be excluded from Massachusetts income to the extent that it is excluded from federal income.

More information can be found at the Massachusetts Department of Revenue webpage.

Learn more about Massachusetts State Tax Benefits for those in a Combat Zone

Massachusetts Retired Military Pay Income Tax Benefit: Retired Military pay is not taxed in Massachusetts.

Learn more about the Massachusetts Retired Military Pay Income Tax Benefit

Military Disability Retired Pay Excluded from Massachusetts Gross Income: In Massachusetts, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs disability benefits are excluded from state gross income.

Learn more about Military Disability Retired Pay Excluded from Massachusetts Gross Income

young child hugging a tombstone in a veteran cemeteryMassachusetts State Taxes on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation: 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.

Learn more about Massachusetts State Taxes on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Dependency and Indemnity Compensation

Military Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP)/ Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan (RCSBP)/ Retired Serviceman’s Family Protection Plan (RSFPP) Massachusetts State Tax Benefits: Survivor Benefit Program pensions which are paid to a Surviving Spouse are not taxed.

Learn more about Military Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP)/ Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan (RCSBP)/ Retired Serviceman’s Family Protection Plan (RSFPP) Massachusetts State Tax Benefits

Massachusetts Property Tax Exemption for Veterans, Spouses, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents: All Veterans, Veterans Spouses, Surviving Spouse and Gold Star Parents may be eligible for a range of property tax exemptions. To apply the Veteran or Family member should contact the assessor's office in their community, or:

Department of Revenue
Division of Local Services Bureau of Municipal Finance Laws
100 Cambridge Street (no walk-in service)
Boston, MA 02210

The application must be made annually.
Who is eligible for Massachusetts Property Tax Exemption for Veterans, Spouses, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents?
To qualify, Veterans (and Family members where applicable) must:

  • Be legal residents of Massachusettsburial flag

  • Be occupying the property as their domicile on July 1 in the year of application

  • Have lived in Massachusetts for at least six months prior to entering the service (Spouses exempted) OR

  • Have lived in Massachusetts for five consecutive years immediately prior to filing for a property tax exemption.

In most cases a Surviving Spouse receives the exemption if they were receiving it before the Veteran passed away. However, Surviving Spouses receiving exemption under Clauses 22 and 22D lose the exemption upon remarriage.

$400.00 tax exemption for the following (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22):

  • 10% (or more) service-connected disabled Veteran

  • Purple Heart recipient

  • Gold Star mothers and fathers

  • Spouse of Veteran entitled under this clause

  • Surviving Spouses who do not remarry.

$750.00 if the Veteran has (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22A):

  • Lost use of one hand above the wrist, or one foot above the ankle, or one eye.

  • A Medal of Honor recipient

  • A Distinguished Service Cross

  • A Navy Cross or an Air Force Cross

  • The Spouse or Surviving Spouse of an eligible Veteran.

$1,250.00 if the Veteran has (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22B):

  • Loss or loss of use of both hands or both feet

  • Loss or loss of use of one hand and one foot

  • Loss or loss of use of both eyes (blind)

  • The Spouse or Surviving Spouse of an eligible Veteran.

$1,500.00 if the Veteran is rated by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to be permanent and totally disabled, and has specially adapted housing (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22C).

Surviving Spouses (who do not remarry) of Service members, sailors, or members of the Guard whose death occurred as a proximate result of an injury sustained or disease contracted in a combat zone, or who are missing in action with a presumptive finding of death, as a result of combat as members of the Armed Forces of the United States. These people are eligible for total exemption on their property taxes (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22D).

$1,000.00 if the Veteran is rated 100% disabled by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22E).

Veterans who are paraplegics or have a 100% disability for service-connected blindness and their Spouses or Surviving Spouse are entitled to a full exemption. (M.G.L. ch. 59, s.5, clause 22F).


Massachusetts Department of Revenue, Taxpayer's Guide to Local Property Tax Exemptions

*Under M.G.L. c. 59 s. 5 , clauses 22A, 22B, 22C, and 22E, Surviving Spouses of disabled Veterans who qualified for exemptions ranging from $750 to $1500 may now continue to receive the higher amount regardless of marital status.

To apply, contact the assessor’s office in your community, applications must be made annually.

Learn more about Massachusetts Property Tax Exemption for Veterans, Spouses, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents

Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans and Former Prisoners of War: A motor vehicle excise tax exemption for disabled Veterans and ex-prisoners of war is Disabled Veteran with prostetic legauthorized for eligible Veterans and Surviving Spouses. M.G.L. ch. 60A, s.1
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans and Former Prisoners of War?
Veterans as defined in section 7 of chapter 4 of the Massachusetts General Laws who by reason of service in the U.S. Armed Forces have suffered the loss of, or permanent loss of the use of, one or both feet or one or one or both arms or has permanent visual impairments as determined by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs or has been determined by the medical advisory board within the Registry of Motor Vehicles to be permanently disabled is eligible for motor vehicle excise exemption (applicable only to one motor vehicle owned and registered for personal, non-commercial use).

The excise tax imposed shall also apply to a motor vehicle owned and registered by or leased to a former prisoner of war defined as any regularly appointed, enrolled, enlisted, or inducted member of the military forces of the United States who was captured, separated and incarcerated by an enemy of the United States during an armed conflict, or to a motor vehicle owned and registered by or leased to the Surviving Spouse of a deceased former prisoner of war, until such time as the Surviving Spouse remarries or fails to renew the registration
*For ex-prisoners of war, and their Surviving Spouse, the law allowing the exemption for the motor vehicle excise must be accepted by the city or town to be applicable.

Learn more about Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Excise Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans and Former Prisoners of War

Massachusetts Vehicle Sales Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans: Disabled Veterans are eligible for a motor vehicle sales tax exemption (applicable only to one motor vehicle owned and registered for personal, non-commercial use).
M.G.L. ch.64H, s.6 (u)
Who is eligible for Massachusetts Vehicle Sales Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans?
Disabled Veterans who by reason of service in the United States Armed Forces have suffered the loss of, or permanent loss of the use of, both legs or both arms or one leg and one arm or the Veteran has been determined to be permanently disabled by the medical advisory board and has been issued a disabled Veteran number plate.

Learn more about Massachusetts Vehicle Sales Tax Exemption for Disabled Veterans

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran Education Benefits?

Massachusetts Tuition and Fee Waivers for Guard Members: The Massachusetts National Guard Education Assistance Program provides a 100% tuition and fee waiver for Massachusetts National Guard Service members attending a state college, university, or community college program. Your assistance can continue as long as you are in good standing academically and until you have reached 130 semester hours. M.G.L. Ch. 33, s.137

Contact the Massachusetts state college or university Veterans' Representative at the state college or university you wish to attend for details.
Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, Veterans Education Webpage
Massachusetts Department of Higher Education, Public Higher Education Institution Directory

Learn more about the Massachusetts Tuition and Fee Waivers for Guard Members

Massachusetts Categorical Tuition Waiver for Veterans and Active Duty Members: The Commonwealth of Massachusetts offers a tuition waiver to asoldier taking notesll Veterans and active duty servicepersons who are permanent and legal residents of Massachusetts. This waiver can be used at any Massachusetts state or community college or University campus.

To apply for the waiver, the student must present documentation of categorical waiver eligibility to the institution’s Veterans Certifying Official, usually separation papers or copy of orders. For more information, contact the institution you are attending or plan to attend. For more information, you may also contact the Department of Higher Education's Office of Student Financial Assistance at 617-391-6070.
Commonwealth of Massachusetts Definition of a Veteran
Massachusetts Categorical Tuition Waiver Fact Sheet
Massachusetts Office of Student Financial Assistance

Learn more about the Massachusetts Categorical Tuition Waiver for Veterans and Active Duty Members

UMass Boston and Suffolk University, Veterans Upward Bound Program: The UMass Boston Veterans Upward Bound Program and the Suffolk University Veterans Upward Bound Program are free pre-college programs to help Veterans develop the academic and personal skills necessary for success in a program of post-secondary education.
Who is eligible for UMass Boston and Suffolk University Upward Bound Programs? In order to qualify, the Veteran:

  • Be U.S. citizen or permanent resident

  • Have served over 180 days of active military duty or have a service-connected disability. For reservists serving on or after September 11, 2001, shorter terms of service may provide eligibility

  • Have a military discharge other than dishonorable

  • Have academic need

And, applicants must qualify in one of the following two ways:

  • They must be a potential first-generation college graduate (their primary caregiver had not graduated from a four-year higher education institution before the applicant turned 18), OR

  • They must meet income guidelines for the program. These are based on federal taxable income and Family size.

Please contact the respective school for detailed guidelines:

Suffolk University
73 Tremont, Suite 7025
Boston, MA 02108
Phone: 617-725-4100

UMass Boston
100 Morrissey Boulevard
McCormack Hall, 3rd Floor, Room 704
Boston, MA 02125
Phone: 617-287-5870

Learn more about UMass Boston and Suffolk University Veterans Upward Bound Program

Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund (MSLF): The Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund is a charitable trust that seeks to honor Massachusetts fallen Service members, whoSoldiers Legacy Fund logo died while supporting military operations post 9/11, by providing educational assistance grants to their Children.

The MSLF is designed to grant funds for current and future college/university students whose parent's "home of record" at the Department of Defense was Massachusetts and were killed on deployment during Operations Enduring or Iraqi Freedom.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund (MSLF)?
Children qualify if their parent in the military died supporting the Global War on Terrorism and whose death was credited to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. There is no selection process. If the student is a Child of a Service member whose service is credited to Massachusetts and gave their life in support of the Global War on Terror, that student qualifies for funds.

Prior to each school year, the trustees will distribute equal grant shares to those students who qualify. The only requirement for recipients will be that they have filed applications establishing that they are qualified, and that they remain enrolled in the undergraduate or postgraduate program at the college or university.
Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund (MSLF) Brochure

Learn more about the Massachusetts Soldiers Legacy Fund (MSLF)

Massachusetts Operation Recognition-Diploma Program for Wartime Veterans: Allows high schools to award diplomas to honorably discharged Veterans of World War II, Korean, and Vietnam, who left school for good upon being drafted or enlisting in the military. Contact your Massachusetts local Veterans' Service Officer (VSO) for details on how to apply.
M.G.L. Ch. 71, s. 4
Massachusetts local Veterans' Service Officer (VSO) Directory (enter your zip code in the blue box on the left of the page to find the nearest VSO)

Learn more about Massachusetts Operation Recognition-Diploma Program for Wartime Veterans

Massachusetts Instate Tuition for Non-Resident Veterans and their Dependents: The Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014 (Public Law 113-146) changed the amount of tuition and fee charges which can be reported to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Effective July 1, 2015, public institutions of higher education must charge qualifying Veterans and dependents tuition and fees at the rate for in-state residents. Any institution not meeting this requirement will be disapproved by VA for the Post-9/11 GI Bill and Montgomery GI Bill.

Who is eligible for Massachusetts Instate Tuition for Non-Resident Veterans and their Dependents? Individuals qualifying for in-state tuition under Public Law 113-146 are:

  • A Veteran receiving benefits under the Montgomery GI Bill (Chapter 30) or the Post-9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) who lives in the state in which the institution is located (regardless of their legal state of residence) and enrolls in the institution within three years of discharge from a period of active duty service of 90 days or more

  • A Spouse or Child using transferred benefits under the Post-9/11 GI Bill (Chapter 33) who lives in the state in which the institution is located (regardless of their legal state of residence) and enrolls in the institution within 3 years of the transferor’s discharge from a period of active duty service of 90 days or more

  • A Spouse or Child using benefits under the Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship who lives in the state in which the institution is located (regardless of their legal state of residence) and enrolls in the institution within three years of the Servicemember’s death in the line of duty following a period of active duty service of 90 days or more.

If the Veteran or dependent enrolls within three years after the Veteran’s discharge, the requirement to charge no more than the in-state tuition rate would apply for the duration the individual remains continuously enrolled at the institution.

Learn more about Massachusetts Instate Tuition for Non-Resident Veterans and their Dependents

Massachusetts 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 Children sitting on the steps of a schooldistrict 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:
RADM J. Clark Orazelli
Massachusetts Commissioner
Address: 23 Pearl Rd, Nahant, MA 01908
Email: corazelli@gmail.com
Phone: 206-459-3222

Secondary Point of Contact:
Christine Cowan
Military Family Education Liaison
Email: christine.h.cowen@mass.gov
Phone: 781-338-6301

Learn more about Massachusetts Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran Employment Benefits?

Massachusetts State Employment Hiring Preference for Veterans, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents: Massachusetts Veterans receive Veterans' preference for open competitive civil service exams, receive extra points for promotional exams, and are placed at the top of the registry for labor service.

Open Competitive Exams: Civil service uses a system of absolute Veteran’s preference in which someone qualifying as a Veteran who receives 70 points or above on an open competitive exam (including police and firefighter) is immediately placed at the head of the eligibility list. This does not mean that the Veteran automatically gets the job. They are just placed at the head of the list and hired when there is a vacancy.

Promotional Exams: All types of Veterans have two points added to their scores. They are not placed at the head of the list.

Labor Service: There is no exam required for labor service positions. Veterans, whether disabled or not, are placed at the top of the eligibility list. Spouses and single parents of Veterans are placed below Veterans but above all other applicants.

Public Service: Members of the Guard or Reserve who are called to active service and who have taken a civil service test, passed, and are on a current certified list are eligible for protection on their civil service original appointment exams. They must make a request in writing up to one year following their discharge to be continued on or restored to such list for a period of time equal to the time of military service. If a person is on more than one list, they must request this protection separately for each list.

Veterans who apply for civil service jobs, for which there is no exam, and therefore no list, receive preference over non-Veterans. If there is more than one Veteran, it is up to the appointing authority to make the choice between or among them. If an authority wants to by-pass this law, it has to get the Human Resource Division's (HRD) approval. HRD's civil service unit also maintains lists of state agencies with vacancies and will notify interested Veterans of openings.
Who is eligible for Massachusetts State Employment Hiring Preference for Veterans, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents? All Veterans as defined by M.G.L. c. 4, s. 7, cl. 43 are eligible for Veterans' preference in civil service positions. Within the system of absolute Veteran’s preference, Veterans are ranked as follows:

  • Disabled Veterans have first preference over all other Veterans

  • All other Veterans have second preference

  • Spouses and single parents of Veterans who died in action or from service-connected wounds receive third preference.

Learn more Massachusetts State Employment Hiring Preference for Veterans, Surviving Spouses and Gold Star Parents

Massachusetts State Employment Veteran's Tenure: M.G.L. ch. 30, s.9A Veterans who hold state non-civil service positions for more than three years cannot be involuntarily separated for lack of work or money when similar offices or positions exist, unless such positions are held by Veterans, in which case separation shall occur in reverse order of their respective original appointments.

Learn more about Massachusetts State Employment Veteran's Tenure

Massachusetts State Employment Retirement-Pension Buy-back: M.G.L. ch. 32, s.4 (h) Veterans who are employed by state government and certain other governmental units are eligible to buy back up to four years of active service accrued at the rate of one year for every one year of active duty service or four years of active Reserve or National Guard service accrued at the rate of one year for every five years of active Reserve or Guard Service.

Learn more about Massachusetts State Employment Retirement-Pension Buy-back

Massachusetts State Public Works Employment Preference: Preference is given to qualified Veterans in public works construction by the state, a county, town, authority or district, or by a person contracting with or subcontracting for such work. Each county, town, district, contractor, or subcontraoffice personel around a conference tablector therefore shall give preference to Veterans and service-connected disabled Veterans who live in their jurisdiction.

Learn more about Massachusetts State Public Works Employment Preference

Veteran's Hiring Preferences for Federal Employment: By Federal law, Veterans who are disabled or who served on active duty in the United States Armed Forces during certain specified time periods or in military campaigns are entitled to preference over non-Veterans both in hiring into the Federal civil service and in retention during reduction in force. Veterans may be entitled to 5 or 10 points included in any scoring process for examination or interviews.

5-point Hiring Preference: Five points are added to the examination score or rating of a Veteran who served:

  • During a war; or

  • During the period April 28, 1952 through July 1, 1955; or

  • For more than 180 consecutive days, other than for training, any part of which occurred after January 31, 1955, and before October 15, 1976; or

  • During the Gulf War from August 2, 1990, through January 2, 1992; or

  • For more than 180 consecutive days, other than for training, any part of which occurred during the period beginning September 11, 2001, and ending on August 31, 2010, the last day of Operation Iraqi Freedom; or

  • In a campaign or expedition for which a campaign medal has been authorized. Any Armed Forces Expeditionary medal or campaign badge, including El Salvador, Lebanon, Grenada, Panama, Southwest Asia, Somalia, and Haiti, qualifies for preference.

10-point Compensable Disability (CP) Preference: Ten points are added to the examination score or rating of:

  • A Veteran who served at any time and who has a compensable service-connected disability rating of at least 10 percent but less than 30 percent.

10-Point 30 Percent Compensable Disability Preference (CPS): Ten points are added to the passing examination score or rating of

  • A Veteran who served at any time and who has a compensable service-connected disability rating of 30 percent or more.

10-Point Disability Preference (XP): Ten points are added to the passing examination score or rating of:

  • A Veteran who served at any time and has a present service-connected disability or is receiving compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension from the military or the Department of Veterans Affairs but does not qualify as a CP or CPS; or

  • A Veteran who received a Purple Heart.

10-Point Derived Preference (XP): Ten points are added to the passing examination score or rating of Spouses, Surviving Spouses or Mothers of Veterans as described below. This type of preference is usually referred to as "derived preference" because it is based on service of a Veteran who is not able to use the preference. Both a Mother and a Spouse (including Surviving Spouse) may be entitled to preference on the basis of the same Veteran's service if they both meet the requirements. However, neither may receive preference if the Veteran is living and is qualified for Federal employment.

Ten points are added to the passing examination score or rating of the Spouse of a disabled Veteran who is disqualified for a Federal position along the general lines of their usual occupation because of a service-connected disability. Such a disqualification may be presumed when the Veteran is unemployed and

  • Is rated by appropriate military or Department of Veterans Affairs authorities to be 100 percent disabled and/or unemployable; or

  • Has retired, been separated, or resigned from a civil service position on the basis of a disability that is service-connected in origin; or

  • Has attempted to obtain a civil service position or other position along the lines of their usual occupation and has failed to qualify because of a service-connected disability.

Preference may be allowed in other circumstances but anything less than the above warrants a more careful analysis.

A campaign medal holder or Gulf War Veteran who originally enlisted after September 7, 1980, (or began active duty on or after October 14, 1982, and has not previously completed 24 months of continuous active duty) must have served continuously for 24 months or the full period called or ordered to active duty. The 24-month service requirement does not apply to 10-point preference eligible Veterans separated for disability incurred or aggravated in the line of duty, or to Veterans separated for hardship or other reasons under 10 U.S.C. 1171 or 1173.

Learn more about Veteran's Hiring Preferences for Federal Employment

Massachusetts Public or Private Sector Employment/ Reemployment Protections for Service Members: Under state law ( M.G.L. c. 33 s. 13 ) and federal legislation (Chapter 43 of Title 38, U.S. Code) enforced by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Veterans Employment and Training Service (VETS), Service members are entitled to return to their civilian public or private employment with the seniority, status, and pay they would have attained had they been continuously employed if they meet certain criteria. In particular, the law:

  • Expands the anti-discrimination protection of Reserve and Guard members in hiring, retention, and advancement on the basis of their military obligation

  • Requires employers to make reasonable efforts to retrain or upgrade skills to qualify workers for reemployment

  • Expands healthcare and employee benefit pension plan coverage

  • Extends the number of years an individual may be absent for military duty

  • Improves the protections for disabled Veterans and improves enforcement mechanisms for servicemembers who believe their reemployment rights have been violated.

Service members are required to give advance notice of their service obligation to employers unless military necessity makes this impossible. Notice must be given to employers of intent to return to employment under a set of guidelines based on the length of time absent from the job. Employers and servicemembers with specific questions about their rights and obligations under the USERRA should contact a Veterans’ representative at the U.S. Department of Labor: 617-626-6699 or visit the U.S. Department of Labor, Veterans Employment & Training Service website.
Who is eligible for Massachusetts Public or Private Sector Employment/ Reemployment Protections for Service Members? Active Duty, National Guard and Reserve Service members are eligible for public or private sector employment / reemployment protections.

Learn more about Massachusetts Public or Private Sector Reemployment Employment Protections for Service Members

Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act: Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) protect civilian job rights and benefits for Veterans and members of Reserve components. USERRA also makes major improvements in protecting Service member rights and benefits by clarifying the law, improving enforcement mechanisms, and adding Federal Government employees to those employees already eligible to receive Department of Labor assistance in processing claims.

Absence from Work for Military Duty: USERRA establishes the cumulative length of time that an individual may be absent from work for military duty and retain reemployment rights to five years (the MA National Guardprevious law provided four years of active duty, plus an additional year if it was for the convenience of the Government). There are important exceptions to the five-year limit, including initial enlistments lasting more than five years, periodic National Guard and Reserve training duty, and involuntary active duty extensions and recalls, especially during a time of national emergency. USERRA clearly establishes that reemployment protection does not depend on the timing, frequency, duration, or nature of an individual's service as long as the basic eligibility criteria are met.

Disability Accommodation: USERRA provides protection for disabled Veterans, requiring employers to make reasonable efforts to accommodate the disability. Service members convalescing from injuries received during service or training may have up to two years from the date of completion of service to return to their jobs or apply for reemployment.

Return to Work without Loss of Seniority: USERRA provides that returning service-members are reemployed in the job that they would have attained had they not been absent for military service (the long-standing "escalator" principle), with the same seniority, status and pay, as well as other rights and benefits determined by seniority. USERRA also requires that reasonable efforts (such as training or retraining) be made to enable returning Service members to refresh or upgrade their skills to help them qualify for reemployment. The law clearly provides for alternative reemployment positions if the Service member cannot qualify for the "escalator" position. USERRA also provides that while an individual is performing military service, they are deemed to be on a furlough or leave of absence and is entitled to the non-seniority rights accorded other individuals on non-military leaves of absence.

Extension of Health and Pension Plans: Health and pension plan coverage for Service members is provided for by USERRA. Individuals performing military duty of more than 30 days may elect to continue employer sponsored health care for up to 24 months; however, they may be required to pay up to 102 percent of the full premium. For military service of less than 31 days, health care coverage is provided as if the Service member had remained employed. USERRA clarifies pension plan coverage by making explicit that all pension plans are protected.
Who is eligible for USERRA benefits?
Veterans, Reservists, or National Guard members who leave a position for training or active military service are eligible.

The Department of Labor, through the Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS), provides assistance to all persons having claims under USERRA, including Federal and Postal Service employees.
VETS Regional Office Locations

Learn more about Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)

Military Leave for Massachusetts Civil Service Employees: Massachusetts National Guard and Reserve Service members who are state employees or county, city, or town employees whose elected authority has accepted this provision are entitled to:

National Guard members: Up to 34 paid days for any state fiscal year or 17 paid days for any federal fiscal year with the same leaves of absence or vacation given to others.

No Service member will be required to use vacation or other time for training drills requiring release from their normal scheduled work hours. This release from work will not affect their leaves of absence or vacation with pay given to others.

Reserve Service Members: Reserve Service members employed in the public or private sector are protected from loss of their positions, including normal vacation, sick leave, bonuses, and advancements during the annual training so long as they do not exceed 17 days in any calendar year, give notice of return and departure, and with the discretion of the employer the leave may be with or without pay.

Who is eligible for Military Leave for Massachusetts Civil Service Employees? National Guard and Reserve Service members are eligible for Military Leave for Massachusetts Civil Service employees.

Learn more about Military Leave for Massachusetts Civil Service Employees

Massachusetts State Active Duty Per Diem Compensation Rate: For duty performed by members of the Armed Forces of the commonwealth not serving in a federal duty status, Service members will be paid at the same rate of pay of like grade as they would receive if they were on active duty status in the Armed Forces of the United States with less than 2 years’ service and any subsistence, travel or other allowances as the adjutant general may authorize.

They will be paid the same rate of base pay for length of service and allowances for housing and subsistence as if they were on active duty status in the Armed Forces of the United States; provided, however, that the compensation is not be less than $200 per day.

These pay and allowances will be reduced by any amounts received from the United States government as pay or allowances for military service performed during the same pay period.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts State Active Duty Per Diem Compensation Rate? National Guard Service members while on state active duty are eligible for compensation.

Learn more about the Massachusetts State Active Duty Per Diem Compensation Rate

Massachusetts Compensation and Other Benefits to Employees of the Commonwealth Called to Active Military Service: The Commonwealth will make provisions for the payment of the difference between the military base pay and the state base pay, if the state base pay is higher for the same pay period.

The amended legislation defines military pay to exclude all allowances, such as housing, uniform, combat pay, Spousal allowance, etc. as well as overtime pay, shift differential pay, hazardous duty pay or any other additional compensation received for military service. This differs from Chapter 137 of the Acts of 2003 that defined military pay to include allowances and additional compensation.

The applicable state salary is based on base pay and will not include any additional compensation, such as overtime pay, shift differential, hazardous duty pay, or any other additional compensation. For those paid under the provisions of the Technical Pay Law (TPL), use the TPL salary as the basis for determining the state base pay. Similarly, those paid at salary collision rates should have their collision salary used as the basis for comparison. Holiday pay will also be presumed to be part of the state salary.

In addition, both the original and amended versions of the legislation provide that employees covered by this act shall not lose any seniority or any accrued vacation leave, sick leave, personal leave, compensation time or previously earned overtime. ( M.G.L. c. 33 s. 59 )

Learn more about Massachusetts Compensation and Other Benefits to Employees of the Commonwealth Called to Active Military Service

Massachusetts Division of Professional Licensure Benefits for Service Members, Veterans and Spouses: The Division of Professional Licensure (DPL) is pleased to offer licensing benefits to active duty members of the military, relocated military Spouses, and Veterans pursuant to the Veterans’ Access, Livelihood, Opportunity and Resources Act (VALOR Act) and the new VALOR Act II, signed into law on April 3, 2014.

Under the original VALOR Act, DPL and its 28 professional licensing boards offer the following benefits to qualified individuals:

  • Each of DPL’s 28 boards of registration accepts relevant education, training, and service completed by an applicant for licensure as a member of the Armed Forces or the military reserves, toward the qualifications required for licensure

  • The license of a member of the military who is on active duty will remain valid until they are released from active duty, and for 90 days thereafter

  • DPL expedites the licensure process for military Spouses who are licensed in other states and have left employment there to accompany a Spouse relocated to the Commonwealth due to a military transfer.

Under VALOR Act II, DPL will also waive the Commonwealth’s portion of the initial licensure fee for individuals who qualify for benefits through one of the categories listed above. Applicants are advised that they may still be required to pay fees charged by private vendors who assist DPL in processing license applications or administering exams.

To apply for any of these benefits, interested parties must self-identify as an active duty member of the military, military Spouse, or Veteran, by downloading and completing the appropriate affidavit form listed below, and returning it to DPL along with other requested documents:.

For more information, please consult the Massachusetts Division of Professional Licensure webpage or contact DPL at 617-727-3074.

Learn more about the Massachusetts Division of Professional Licensure Benefits for Service Members, Veterans and Spouses

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran Unemployment Compensation Benefits?

Massachusetts Unemployment Insurance: The Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance (DUA) administers the Unemployment Insurance program, providing temporary assistance to unemployed Massachusetts workers. Unemployment insurance (UI) is a temporary income protection program for workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own and who are able to work, available for work and looking for employment. Funding for UI benefits comes from quarterly contributions paid by the state's employers; no deductions are made from workers' salaries.

To apply for unemployment, you will need the following information:

  • Your Social Security number, birth date, home address, email address, and phone number

  • Your work history for the last 15 months, including the legal names, addresses, and phone numbers of all your employers, and your work start and end dates

  • If you have dependent Children: Their legal birth dates and Social Security numbers

  • (Optional) To receive payments by direct deposit, you’ll also need your bank name, account number, and routing number. Otherwise, DUA will send you a debit card.

If your application is approved, your first payment will be mailed to you as a paper check. After that, payments will be sent to you by direct deposit or by debit card, depending on the method you chose in your application. The fastest way to receive payments is to set up direct deposit.

You may need to provide additional information if you are not a U.S. citizen, are in a union, were in the military, or worked for the federal government.

If You Are Not a United States Citizen, you must provide verification that you were legally eligible to work in Massachusetts and that you are currently eligible to begin a new job. Please be prepared with this verification.

To file for UI online go to the Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance Online Application Portal and to login as a claimant.

You can also file for unemployment benefits or get help with your application by calling the TeleClaim Center. The number you call depends on your area code:

  • 877-626-6800 from area codes 351, 413, 508, 774, and 978

  • 617-626-6800 from any other area code

  • 711 for Voice Relay

The TeleClaim Center hours are 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday-Friday.
Massachusetts Department of Unemployment Assistance, Guide to Benefits and Employment Services for Claimants

Learn more about Massachusetts Unemployment Compensation

Massachusetts, MassHire Department of Career Services Veterans’ Programs and Services: The Veterans Employment & Training Services (VETS) program is provided with grant funding from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The grant allows the MassHire Department of Career Services (DCS) to provide Disabled Veteran's Outreach Program (DVOP) specialists and Veteran Employment Representatives (VERs) at MassHire Department of Career Services, Career Centers across the state.

The purpose of the VETS grant is to ensure the provision of a full range of employment and training services to Veterans. Since Veterans are given priority of service status under the law, it is particularly important for VERs and DVOPs to be connected with all Veterans coming into the Career Centers. In addition, VERs and DVOPs maintain up-to-date information about all the programs and services available to assist Veterans at the federal, state, and local level.

Massachusetts Disabled Veteran Outreach Program (DVOP) : Disabled Veterans' Outreach Program Specialists (DVOPs) develop job and training opportunities for Veterans, with special emphasis on Veterans with service-connected disabilities.

DVOP Specialists provide direct services to Veterans to help them to compete in the labor market. They provide outreach and offer assistance to disabled and other Veterans by promoting community and employer support for employment and training opportunities, including apprenticeship and on-the-job training.

DVOP Specialists work with employers, Veterans' organizations, the U. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U. S. Department of Defense, and community-based organizations to link Veterans with appropriate jobs and training opportunities.

DVOP Specialists serve as case managers for Veterans enrolled in federally funded job training programs such as the Department of Veterans Affairs' Vocational Rehabilitation program, and other Veterans with serious disadvantages in the job market. DVOPs are available to those Veterans and their employers to help ensure that necessary follow-up services are provided to promote job retention.

DVOP Specialists may also be stationed at regional offices and medical or Veterans' outreach centers of the Department of Veterans Affairs, state or county Veterans' service offices, community-based organizations, and military installations.

Massachusetts Veteran Employment Representative (VER) : Veterans' Employment Representatives (VERs) are state employees located in the state's One-Stop Career Centers. Their job is to:

  • Help you organize your job search

  • Work with you to design your own personal employment plan, a comprehensive and flexible way to help you manage your job search

  • Assist you with writing your resume

  • Help you to develop your job leads

Veterans' employment representatives also:

  • Supervise services to Veterans including counseling, testing, and identifying training and employment opportunities

  • Monitor federal job listings to see that eligible Veterans get priority referrals

  • Promote participation in federally-funded employment and training programs

  • Work with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to identify Veterans who need work-specific prosthetic devices, sensory aids or other special equipment

  • Contact community leaders, employers, unions, training programs, and Veterans' service organizations to be sure eligible Veterans get the services to which they are entitled

For more information, please contact the Massachusetts Department of Career Services at 617-626-5300.
Massachusetts, MassHire Department of Career Services Contact information Webpage
Massachusetts, MassHire Department of Career Services, Career Centers Directory
Massachusetts, MassHire Department of Career Services, Veteran Employment Representatives Directory

Learn more about Massachusetts, MassHire Department of Career Services Veterans’ Programs and Services

Veterans and Surviving Spouses Receive Priority of Service for Massachusetts Department of Career Services Programs: U.S. Military Veterans and other covered persons receive Priority of lady talking on a cellphoneService in all employment, training, and placement services in any workforce preparation program funded by the Department of Labor.
Who is eligible to Receive Priority of Service for Massachusetts Department of Career Services Programs? Veterans, the Spouse of a Veteran who died of a service-connected disability, has a total service-connected disability, missing in action or prisoner of war receives access to services or resources provided by the US Department of Labor earlier in time than non-covered persons.

Learn more about Veterans and Surviving Spouses Receive Priority of Service for Massachusetts Department of Career Services Programs

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) Benefits?

'Veteran' designation on Massachusetts Drivers' License & State Identification Cards: All Massachusetts residents who are Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces can choose to have the word "Veteran" printed on their driver's license or ID card when you apply for, renew or duplicate your learner's permit, driver's license, or ID card.
Who is eligible for 'Veteran' designation on Massachusetts Drivers' License & State Identification Cards? All Massachusetts residents who are Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces and were honorably MA Veterans Designation licensedischarged are eligible.

If your license/ID card is not up for renewal, you can get a duplicate for no fee with the Veteran’s Indicator. There is no added fee for the Veteran's Indicator, but you must pay your renewal fee.

You can complete this transaction in person at a Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) Service Center or at one of the select AAA locations. You must present a completed license and ID application and one of the following:

  • A DD214 that indicates honorable discharge (only the long form (full page) is acceptable)

  • A DD215 that indicates honorable discharge

  • An Honorable Discharge form

There is a question on the Class D, M, or DM License and ID Card Application and the CDL Application asking if the customer is a Veteran and if they would like the Veteran's Indicator. A customer who wants the Veteran's Indicator on their Driver's License, Massachusetts ID card, or Liquor ID card must answer "yes" to this question when applying for, renewing, or ordering a duplicate license or ID card.
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Locations
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Driver's License, Learner's Permit or ID Card Application

Learn more about 'Veteran' designation on Massachusetts Drivers' License & State Identification Cards

Massachusetts Veteran and Military License Plates: The State of Massachusetts offers 21 distinctive license plates to honor the service and sacrifice of eligible Service members, Veterans, retirees, and certain Family members. Eligibility requirements differ based on plate type. Refer to each application for instructions and documentation requirements to obtain a military or Veteran license plate.

They also offer branch of service and war time distinctive military emblems that can be affixed to the Veterans Flag passenger car and motorcycle license plates. A short description of some these license plates is listed below.

Learn more about Massachusetts Military and Veteran License Plates

Massachusetts Veterans' License Plates: Massachusetts Veterans’ plates are available to honorably discharged Veterans of the Armed Forces.

You may also choose the flag decal or a branch of service decal as well as a Wartime Service Decal denoting a designated wartime period.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Veterans' License Plates? Honorably discharged Veterans are eligible for the Veteran license plates.

You must present at a full service RMV office or branch a completed application, a photo-copy of your current vehicle registration and one of the following:

  • photocopy of your DD214 (long form only) that indicates "Honorable" in the Character of Service box

  • A photocopy of a DD215 amending your DD214 granting your award that indicates an honorable discharge

  • A photocopy of an Honorable Discharge Form (used during WWII and Korea)

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Application for Veterans Plates with Branch of Service Decal or Flag Image
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Veterans' Branch of Service Decals Sample Page
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Locations

Learn more about the Massachusetts Veterans' License Plate

Massachusetts Purple Heart License Plate: One Purple Heart license plate may be issued for an automobile or motorcycle free of charge to those Veterans who have been awarded the Purple Heart medal. A MA purple heart plateSurviving Spouse will be able to keep this plate until they remarry or fails to renew or cancels such registration. The Surviving Spouse will be subject to an annual fee for the plate.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Purple Heart License plate?
Veterans or Service members that have received a Purple Heart Medal are eligible for the Purple Heart License plate.

A Purple Heart medal recipient must prove that they have been awarded a Purple Heart in order to receive these plates. Purple Heart recipients are eligible for one (1) set of plates for each Purple Heart medal received.

Applicants must provide a completed application, a photocopy of their current vehicle registration a photocopy of member page four of your DD214 or any DD215 amending your DD214 granting your award (needed only if award is not annotated on your separation documents) or other suitable documentation of the receipt of the award.

Applications and documentation must be mailed to:

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Special Plates
P.O. Box 55895
Boston, MA 02205-5895

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Application for Awarded Medal Veterans' Plates

Learn more about the Massachusetts Purple Heart License Plate

Massachusetts Medal of Honor Plate: One Congressional Medal of Honor plate, bearing the recipient’s initials followed by the letters “CMH” may be issued for an automobile or motorcycle free of charge to MA Medal of Honor Platethose Veterans who have been awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor. A Surviving Spouse will be able to keep this plate until they remarry or fail to renew or cancels such registration. The Surviving Spouse will be subject to an annual fee for the plate.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Medal of Honor License plate? Veterans or Service members that have received a Medal of Honor are eligible for the Medal of Honor License plate.

A Medal of Honor recipient must prove that they have been awarded a Medal of Honor in order to receive these plates.

Applicants must provide a completed application, a photocopy of their current vehicle registration a photocopy of member page four of your DD214, or any DD215 amending your DD214 granting your award (needed only if award is not annotated on your separation documents) or other suitable documentation of the receipt of the award.

Applications and documentation must be mailed to:

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles
Attn: Special Plates
P.O. Box 55895
Boston, MA 02205-5895
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Application for Awarded Medal Veterans' Plates

Learn more about the Massachusetts Medal of Honor License Plate

Massachusetts Disabled Veteran License Plate: Disabled Massachusetts Veterans that meet application criteria are eligible for one set of Massachusetts Disabled Veterans License Plates.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Disabled Veteran License Plate? One set of Disabled Veterans' plates with handicap symbol (without charge) may be issued to Veterans who:MA Disabled Veteran plate

  • Have a vehicle registered in their name

  • Meet Medical Affairs guideline*, and

  • Provide the DV Plate letter from the Veteran's Administration that list impairments which otherwise qualify for disabled parking and total at least 60% service-connected rating

  • To obtain Disabled Veterans' plates, the applicant must be a Massachusetts resident.

These plates must be renewed every two years.

The completed application, along with a photocopy of supporting documentation, and/or a DV Plate letter from the Veterans' Administration stating a disability rating of at least 60% should be mailed to:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
ATTN: Medical Affairs
PO Box 55889
Boston, MA 02205-5889

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Application for Disabled Parking Placard/Plate

Learn more about the Massachusetts Disabled Veteran License Plate

Massachusetts Gold Star Family License Plates: A Gold Star Family plate can be issued, without charge to eligible Family members of Service members who died while on active duty with the Armed Forces of the United States.
Who is eligible for the Massachusetts Gold Star Family License Plate? The Spouses, parents, Children, siblings, grandparents, and grand-Children of Service members who died while on active duty with MA goldstar platethe Armed Forces of the United States are eligible.

Each qualifying applicant can register one private passenger motor vehicle or motorcycle owned and principally used by them.

Stepparents, stepchildren, stepsiblings, step grandparents, and step grandchildren are not eligible unless a legal adoption occurred prior to the time of death.

An applicant for a Gold Star Family plate must provide evidence that is satisfactory to the Registrar demonstrating that the deceased died while on active duty with the Armed Forces. The applicant must also certify that they occupy the Family relationship selected on this application.

If you have any questions about eligibility, please contact the Special Plates Department at 857-368-8031.
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Application for Gold Star Family Plates

Learn more about the Massachusetts Gold Star Family License Plates

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Disabled Veteran Fee and Tax Exemptions: Disabled Veterans approved for a Disabled Veteran (DV) plate by the RMV's Medical Affairs Branch are exempt from paying the following fees/taxes:

  • Registration Fee (per M.G.L. Chapter 90, Section 33(29))- Disabled Veterans do not need to pay a registration fee for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the Veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. The Veteran can choose either one set of DV plates or one set of passenger plates. If the Veteran chooses passenger plates with an additional special plate fee (special, vanity, or reserved plates), the special plate fee must be paid. If the Veteran owns additional vehicles, registration fees must be paid for those vehicles;

  • Driver License Fee (per M.G.L. Chapter 90, Section 33(29))- Disabled Veterans do not need to pay fees for driver's license transactions. It does not matter if the Veteran has obtained DV plates, but they must be approved for them;

  • Excise Tax (per M.G.L. Chapter 60A, Section 1) - Disabled Veterans do not need to pay excise tax for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the Veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. It does not matter if the Veteran has obtained DV plates, but they must be approved for them. Application for the excise tax exemption must be made to the board of assessors of the city or town where the vehicle is registered. If the Veteran owns additional vehicles, excise tax must be paid for those vehicles;

  • Sales Tax (per M.G.L. Chapter 64H, Section 6) - Disabled Veterans do not need to pay sales tax for one passenger vehicle or pick-up truck. It must be owned by the Veteran and used for non-commercial purposes. To be eligible, the Veteran MUST obtain DV plates for the vehicle. If the Veteran purchases additional vehicles, sales tax must be paid for those vehicles.

Learn more about the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Disabled Veteran Fee and Tax Exemptions

Massachusetts Registration Rules for Military Members: If you are serving on extended active duty in the military, the following cases generally apply:

  • If your vehicle was purchased, titled, and registered in your home state, you may retain your home state registration indefinitely, regardless of where you are stationed in the country. The only requirement is that you carry insurance at least equal to Massachusetts minimum levels.

  • If your vehicle was purchased, titled, and registered in a state other than your home state, you will need to register the vehicle in each state you are assigned to. If you are not a Massachusetts resident and your vehicle falls into this category, you may drive the vehicle with the existing out-of-state registration for 30 days only. You must register and title the vehicle in Massachusetts before the 30-day period has expired.

  • If you are returning from service abroad and your vehicle bears plates issued by the Armed Forces, you may drive the vehicle for up to 30 days for the purpose of traveling to military duty or to your place of residence.

Learn more about Massachusetts Registration Rules for Military Members

Massachusetts Driver’s Licensing Requirements for Military Personnel and Dependents: If you are active military, you are not required to renew your Massachusetts driver's license during your active military service. However, your Spouse and/or dependent is required to do so.

The RMV will issue special non-photo driver's licenses for active members of the military who are stationed outside of Massachusetts and their Spouses/dependents.

You can request a non-photograph driver's license renewal by mail. In this case, you must:

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicle Schedule of Fees
Registry of Motor Vehicles
The Driver Licensing Department
P.O. Box 55889,
Boston, MA 02205-5889

Your driver's license cannot be renewed more than 1 year in advance of the expiration date. The non-photograph driver's license will be mailed to you as long as you are located outside of Massachusetts.

An active member of the military, or their Spouse or dependent, who is temporarily out of Massachusetts and cannot return home before their driver's license expires can request the RMV to issue a temporary driver's license which is valid for up to 120 days after the expiration date of the original driver's license. This extension can only be granted once. The temporary license is subject to vehicle class type requirements, endorsements, and restrictions. The temporary license will only be mailed to an out-of-state address. In addition, the RMV will not issue a temporary license if the driver's license is in non-renew status.

Upon returning to Massachusetts after your honorable discharge from active duty, you have 60 days to renew your expired Massachusetts driver's license. If you have a driver's license issued by the Armed Forces based in another country, you may operate a motor vehicle in Massachusetts for up to 45 days. This policy is applicable only to military personnel; it does not apply to their Spouses or dependents.

Learn more about Massachusetts Driver’s Licensing Requirements for Military Personnel and Dependents

Massachusetts Driver's License Replacement for Active Service Members and Dependents: If you are an active member of the military (or your Spouse or dependent), wants to obtain a replacement driver's license, you should send a letter of request stating whether your driver's license was lost or stolen and a photocopy of your military identification to the Driver Licensing Department. There is no fee for duplicate driver's licenses for military personnel or their dependents. Mail your request to:

Registry of Motor Vehicles
The Driver Licensing Department
P.O. Box 55889
Boston, MA 02205-5889

Learn more about Massachusetts Driver's License Replacement for Active Service Members and Dependents

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Commercial Driver License, Military Skills Test Waiver Policy: The Massachusetts Department of Motor Vehicles (RMV) adopts the Military Commercial Driver License Skills Test Waiver for Commercial Driver's Licenses (CDL) that allows a qualified Servicemember or Veteran to apply for a Commercial Driver’s License without road skills testing. The test will be waived for Veterans with two years of Military experience operating vehicles of representative of the Class of license applied for, during the 90 days prior to discharge from the service.
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Application for Military Skills Test Waiver
Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles Commercial Driver's License Webpage

Learn more about Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, CDL, Military Skills Test Waiver

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veteran Health and Insurance Benefits?

Compensation for Massachusetts National Guard Service Members for Injury, Illness, or Disability While on State Active Duty: If a Service member receives an injury, is disabled or contracts a sickness or disease that incapacitates the person from pursuing the person's usual business or occupation shall, during the period of incapacity, receive compensation for the actual and necessary expenses for medical services and care, medicines and hospitalization or replacement or repair of eyeglasses, dentures or prosthetic devices worn or carried.
Who is eligible for Compensation for Massachusetts National Guard Service Members for Injury, Illness, or Disability While on State Active Duty?
National Guard Service members that suffer illness, injury, disability or death in the line-of-duty on State Active Duty are eligible for compensation under the state workers’ compensation laws.

Learn more about Compensation for Massachusetts National Guard Service Members for Injury, Illness, or Disability While on State Active Duty

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Life Insurance: The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) provides valuable life insurance benefits to Veterans, Active and Reserve Component Service members and their Families to provide financial security given the extraordinary risks involved in military Service. The State of Massachusetts will pay one half of National Guard Service member's monthly SGLI premiums. The VA provides the following life insurance benefit programs:

  • Service Member's Group Life Insurance (SGLI)

  • Veterans Group Life Insurance (VGLI)

  • Family Members Group Life Insurance (FSGLI)

  • Service Members Group Life Insurance Traumatic Injury Projection ( TSGLI)

  • Service-Disabled Veterans Life Insurance (S-DVI)

  • Veterans Mortgage Life Insurance (VMLI)

Learn more about U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Life Insurance

TRICARE Reserve Select Health Insurance: TRICARE Reserve Select is a premium-based plan, available worldwide for Selected Reserve, (Reserve and National Guard) and their Families who meet the following qualifications:

  • Not on active duty orders

  • Not covered under the Transitional Assistance Management Program

  • Not eligible for or enrolled in the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program or currently covered under FEHB, either under their own eligibility or through a Family member.

The plan provides comprehensive health care coverage when you're not activated and covered by active duty TRICARE benefits.

Learn more about TRICARE Reserve Select Health Insurance

Compensation for Massachusetts National Guard Service Members Killed While on Active Duty: If the death of a member of the Massachusetts national guard results from injury, sickness or disease received while in the line of duty pursuant to orders under titles 10 and 32 of the United States Code and the injury, sickness or disease resulting in the death was not the result of the decedent's fault or neglect, a single payment of $100,000 will be paid to the Surviving Spouse.

If there is no Surviving Spouse, the amount will be paid to the Children of the decedent in equal shares. If there is no Surviving Spouse and no Children, the surviving mother and father of the decedent, if the father and mother were dependent on the decedent for support at the time of the decedent's death, will each receive $50,000. If only 1 parent was dependent on the decedent for support at the time of the decedent's death, the parent will receive $100,000.

Learn more about Compensation for Massachusetts National Guard Service Members Killed While on Active Duty

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veterans Parks and Recreation Benefits?

Massachusetts Resident Hunting/Fishing Licenses for Non-Resident Military Personnel: Non-resident military personnel stationed in Massachusetts may apply for and receive MA Fish and Wildlife insigniahunting and fishing licenses at the resident rate.
Massachusetts Hunting and Freshwater Fishing License Fees

Learn more about Massachusetts Resident Hunting/Fishing Licenses for Non-Resident Military Personnel

Massachusetts Free Fishing or Hunting License for Disabled Persons: Disabled Massachusetts residents (blind, paraplegic) may qualify for a free MA freshwater fishing license. Disabled Massachusetts residents (paraplegic) may qualify for a free MA hunting license.Disabled Veteran Fishing

Note: If this is your first time applying for a MA resident disabled fishing license, you'll have to submit your application and a letter from your physician directly to the Boston office of the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries & Wildlife.
Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, Free license Application Form for Blind, Intellectually Disabled or Paraplegic Persons
Who is eligible for Massachusetts Free Fishing or Hunting License for Disabled Persons? To qualify for the free Massachusetts hunting or fishing license on account of a disability:

  • you must be a resident citizen of the US

  • You must have been a legal resident in Massachusetts for at least 6 consecutive months immediately before applying; and

  • You must submit proper medical proof of disability along with your license application.

Blind: (Fishing License) Must have a certificate of blindness issued by the Commission for the Blind to the applicant.

Paraplegic: (Fishing/Hunting license) Total paralysis of the lower half of the body or a condition that prevents any use of the lower limbs.

Learn more about Massachusetts Free Fishing or Hunting License for Disabled Persons

Massachusetts Free State Park Parking for Disabled Veterans and Purple Heart Recipients: Day use parking fees are waived for vehicles bearing a disabled Veteran license plate/ placard or Purple State ParkHeart Recipient License plate.

This waiver does not apply to camping fees and is subject to available parking. This waiver does not apply to camping fees and is subject to available parking. The ParksPass is not valid at the following locations – Quabbin Reservoir Boat Launch Areas, Squantum Point, North Point or Draw Seven Commuter lots.

Learn more about Massachusetts Free State Park Parking for Disabled Veterans and Purple Heart Recipients

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What are my Massachusetts Military and Veterans Miscellaneous Benefits?

Massachusetts State Veteran Annuities: The Commonwealth of Massachusetts and its Department of Veterans' Services provide an annuity in the amount of $2,000 which is payable biannually on August 1st and February 1st in two installments of $1,000 each. Please be aware that NEW applications for an August payment must be received and approved by DVS June 30th in any given year. NEW Applications for a February payment must be received and approved by DVS by December 31st in any given year.
Who is eligible for Massachusetts State Veteran Annuities? This annuity is given in recognition of the service of 100% service-connected disabled Veterans and to the parents of Veterans (Gold Star Parents) and the un-remarried Spouses (Gold Star Wives or Husbands) of Veterans who gave their lives in the service of their country during wartime. Eligible applicants should meet the following criteria:

Veteran:

  • Meets one of the service time requirements set forth in 108 CMR 3.03

  • Has received any discharge from military service other than a dishonorable discharge

  • Is a resident of Massachusetts at the time of applying for the annuity and continues to be a resident of the Commonwealth as per M.G.L. ch. 115, s.6A

  • Meets the requirements for blindness, paraplegia, double amputation or other disability set forth in M.G.L. ch. 115, s.6B and so certified by the Department of Veterans Affairs. Proof of service and disability shall be furnished to the Commissioner as per M.G.L. ch. 115, s.6C .

Parent or Spouse:

  • Death of Veteran must be service-connected

  • Parent/ Spouse must reside in the Commonwealth and must continue to reside in Massachusetts from the date of application and while in receipt of the annuity payments

  • Spouses must not be remarried.

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Veterans Annuity Application

To receive the annuity the applicant must complete the application, the IRS' W-9 Form, and the Electronic Funds Transfer sign-up sheet. Submit all annuity applications to:

Department of Veterans' Services
Attn: Annuities
600 Washington St, 7th Floor
Boston, MA 02111

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Veterans Annuity Application Instructions

Learn more about Massachusetts State Veteran Annuities

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Veteran Bonuses: The Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides a bonus to Veterans who were domiciled in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry Dept of Veterans Services logoin the Armed Forces. In case of the death of a Veteran, the Spouse and Children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased Veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus noted below. You may use the Massachusetts Veterans’ Bonus Inquiry webpage to determine if you or a Family member ever received a Massachusetts Wartime Bonus. The majority of World War II, Korea and Vietnam Veterans have already received their payments, so please call 617-367-9333 ext. 859 before submitting an application.

For more information, contact:

Veterans' Bonus Division at the Department of Veterans' Services

600 Washington Street, 7th Floor
Boston, MA 02111
617-210-5927
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services Webpage
Email: mdvs@vet.state.ma.us
Massachusetts Veterans’ Bonus Fact Sheet

Learn more about Massachusetts Department of Veteran Services Veterans' Bonuses

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Vietnam Conflict Bonus: Vietnam Veterans were 6 months domiciled in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry in the Armed Forces and who performed six months active duty from July 1, 1958 and prior to May 17, 1975 are eligible for a bonus according to the following stipulations:

  • Those Veterans who served six months or more active duty are eligible for a $200 bonus

  • Those Veterans who served in Vietnam are eligible for a $300 bonus.

In case of the death of a Veteran, the Spouse and Children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased Veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus.
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Bonus Application Form for Veterans of Older Wars
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Veterans' Bonus Application Form for Deceased Veterans

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Vietnam Conflict Bonus

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Persian Gulf War Bonus: Persian Gulf Veterans who were domiciled in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry in the Armed Forces and performed thirty days or more during the period of August 2, 1990 to April 10, 1991 and whose service was under honorable conditions are eligible for a bonus according to the following stipulations:

  • Those Veterans who were called to active service in support of said war including as members of the Army National Guard or Air National Guard or as Reservists in the Armed Forces of the United States in an area other than the Persian Gulf area are eligible for a $300 bonus

  • Those Veterans who performed active service in the Persian Gulf area (war zone or contiguous waters) and who are in receipt of the Southwest Asia Service Medal established by executive order of the President on March 13, 1991 are eligible for a $500 bonus.

In case of the death of a Veteran, the Spouse and Children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased Veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus.

Applicants must submit all applicable forms below:

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Persian Gulf War Bonus

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Korean War Bonus: Korean Veterans (service between June 25, 1950 - January 31, 1955) who were domiciled for 6 months in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry in the Armed Forces are eligible for a bonus according to the following stipulations:

  • Those Veterans who performed ninety days stateside duty are eligible for a $100 bonus

  • Those Veterans who performed six months or more duty are eligible for a $200 bonus

  • Those Veterans who served one or more days outside of the continental limits of the United States or performed Foreign Service are eligible for a $300 bonus.

In case of the death of a Veteran, the Spouse and Children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased Veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus.
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Bonus Application Form for Veterans of Older Wars
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Veterans' Bonus Application Form for Deceased Veterans

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Korean War Bonus

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, World War II Bonus: World War II Veterans (service between September 16, 1940 - June 25, 1947) who were domiciled for 6 months in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry in the Armed Forces are eligible for a bonus according to the following stipulations:

  • Those Veterans who performed one day to six months active service are eligible for a $100 bonus

  • Those Veterans who performed six months or more stateside service are eligible for a $200 bonus

  • Those Veterans who performed Foreign Service are eligible for a $300 bonus.

In case of the death of a Veteran, the Spouse and Children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased Veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus.
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Bonus Application Form for Veterans of Older Wars
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Veterans' Bonus Application Form for Deceased Veterans

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, World War II Bonus

Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Global War on Terror/ Welcome Home Bonus: The State Treasurer's Office, Veterans' Bonus Division, will administer the Global War on Terror/ Welcome Home Bonus to Veterans of the Global War on Terrorism. You are eligible if you meet the following criteria: six months domicile in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry into the Armed Forces service, beginning September 11, 2001, and discharged under honorable conditions.

  • Service members who served active duty in Iraq or Afghanistan receive $1000

  • Service members with six months or more active service, stateside or outside the continental limits of the United States, receive $500.

(Note: Active service shall not include active duty for training in the Army or Air National Guard, or active duty for training as a Reservist in the Armed Forces of the United States).

Next-of-kin of eligible Service members killed in action may receive the Welcome Home Bonus if the Veteran had not already received it.

Proof of residency must accompany the application. Some examples of proof of residency include:

  • Census documents

  • School diplomas or transcripts that show six months to one-year domicile before enlistment/deployment

  • W-2 form

  • Vehicle excise tax bill

  • Notarized rental agreement

Next-of-kin must provide documentation establishing a connection to the deceased. Do not hesitate to contact the Treasurer's Office with questions or concerns about your application and accompanying documents at 617-367-9333, Ext. 859.

Individuals may receive such benefits each time they are deployed; provided, however, that an eligible resident shall receive the full bonus allowed upon return after their first deployment and 50 percent of the bonus after each subsequent deployment, provided that appropriated funding is available and the state treasurer certifies that the relevant account has sufficient funds to maintain such an initiative.
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Global War on Terror/ Welcome Home Bonus Application Form
Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, Global War on Terror/ Welcome Home Deceased Veteran Bonus Application Form

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans’ Services, Global War on Terror/ Welcome Home Bonus

Massachusetts Chapter 115 State Benefits for Veterans and Eligible Family Members: Under Chapter 115 of Massachusetts General Laws ( M.G.L. ch. 115 ), the Commonwealth provides a uniform program of financial and medical assistance for indigent Veterans and their dependents. Qualifying Veterans and their dependents receive necessary financial assistance for food, shelter, clothing, housing supplies, and medical care in accordance with a formula which takes into account the number of dependents and income from all sources. Eligible dependents of deceased Veterans are provided with the same benefits as they would were the Veteran still living.
Who is eligible for Massachusetts Chapter 115 State Benefits for Veterans and Eligible Family Members?
There are three requirements to get these benefits. You must:

  • be a Veteran or a dependent of a Veteran

  • have financial need; and

  • live in Massachusetts.

A Veteran is someone who meets all of the following criteria:

  • Served in the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force, or full-time National Guard duty

  • Last discharge was “under honorable conditions” (you may be eligible even if you do not have an Honorable discharge.)

  • Meets at least one of the following requirements:

    • Served at least 180 days; or

    • Served at least 90 days with at least 1 day in war time; or

    • Had a service-connected disability after 1 day of active service in war time; or

    • Was awarded the Purple Heart; or

    • Died in service.

A dependent is one of the following people:

  • A Veteran’s Spouse or Surviving Spouse

  • A Veteran’s Child aged 18 or younger

  • A Veteran’s Child aged 19 to 23 years old who is in high school or college

  • A Veteran’s Child aged 19 or older who is totally disabled and was disabled before turning 19

  • A Veteran’s parent.

You must have low income and assets. Income includes wages, salary, VA compensation and pension, SSI/SSDI, government benefits, dividends, and other payments to you.

Applications for Chapter 115 Public Assistance benefits can be filed with the Veteran's local Massachusetts Veterans' Service Officer (VSO) who works out of your city or town hall. To find the appropriate VSO:

  • Consult the Massachusetts VSO directory below

  • Call your local city/town hall and ask for Veterans' Services

  • Or, call the Department of Veterans' Services, 617-210-5480 and ask for your VSO's name and contact information.

Massachusetts local Veterans' Service Officer (VSO) Directory (enter your zip code in the blue box on the left side of the page to find the nearest VSO)
Massachusetts Chapter 115 State Benefits for Veterans and Eligible Family Members Self Help Guide

Learn more about Massachusetts Chapter 115 State Benefits for Veterans and Eligible Family Members

Massachusetts Women Veterans' Network: The Department of Veterans' Services in acknowledging that women Veterans have needs and concerns not experienced by the male population, created the Women Veterans' Network in 1997. Its purpose is to find women who served in the military, some of whom may not be aware that they are Veterans and eligible for benefits. The Network is the central resource for women Veterans in Massachusetts. Its mission is to:

  • Provide women Veterans with information on federal, state, and local benefits

  • Expand awareness of the needs of women Veterans and identify available health and human resources to meet those needs

  • Advocate on behalf of women Veterans in Massachusetts.

Database of Women Veterans: The Women Veterans' Network maintains a confidential database of women Veterans in Massachusetts. The database is used as a mailing list for the Network's biannual newsletter, which contains information on benefits, programs, and events for women Veterans.

To add your name to the Database of Women Veterans, call, fax, write, or email the Women Veterans' Network and request that your name be added. Information needed for addition:

  • full name

  • mailing address

  • Branch of service and years of service (optional).

The annual Women Are Veterans Too! event, sponsored by the Women Veterans’ Network, takes place at the State House during the week of Veterans’ Day. The ceremony includes a presentation of the Outstanding Woman Veteran Award. The Network participates in other informational events throughout the year.

Members of the Women Veterans’ Network Committee include women Veterans from all eras, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs representatives, local Veterans’ Service Officers, and representatives of Veterans’ services organizations, and active duty military personnel. The Committee meets bimonthly to share information and work on projects.

The Women Veterans’ Network Committee compiled a booklet answering the 36 most frequently asked questions of Massachusetts’ women Veterans. This publication is an easy-to-use reference tool that points readers to the federal and state programs and resources available to women Veterans. The 36 Frequently Asked Questions book is available at no charge; call or email to request a copy at: (617) 210-5778 or dvswomen@vet.state.ma.us .


Women Veterans' Network
600 Washington St., 7th Floor
Boston, MA 02111
617-210-5958
Fax: 617-210-5788
Email: DVSWomen@vet.state.ma.us

Learn more about the Massachusetts Women Veterans' Network

Massachusetts Statewide Advocacy for Veterans’ (SAVE Program): The fundamental principle of the SAVE program is to advocate for Veterans who are not able to obtain the benefits they have earned due to institutional or personal barriers. The program's primary mission is prevention of suicide and mental health distress through the identification of issues facing Veterans when they return from service and proactively providing them with access to benefits and services that may address these issues and result in positive transitions back to civilian life.

SAVE acts as a liaison between Veterans and their Families and the various agencies within the federal and state governments.

The SAVE team works closely, and in collaboration, with the Massachusetts National Guard. Resources offered by the Massachusetts National Guard and their Family Readiness Program are available to all Service members and their Families, regardless of the branch in which they serve.

Contact information:


Boston Office:

SAVE Team
Department of Veterans' Service
600 Washington St., 7th Floor
Boston, MA 02111
Phone: 617-210-5743
Toll-free: 1-888-844-2838
Fax: 617-210-5755
Email: save@massmail.state.ma.us

Chelsea Office:
SAVE Team
Chelsea Soldiers' Home
91 Crest Avenue, Building D
Chelsea, MA 02150
Phone: 617-210-5743

Holyoke Office:
SAVE Team
Holyoke Soldiers' Home
110 Cherry Street, Office 065
Holyoke, MA 01040
Phone: 617-210-5743

Learn more about the Massachusetts Statewide Advocacy for Veterans’ (SAVE Program)

Massachusetts Soldiers’ Homes: Massachusetts Soldiers’ Homes provide a variety of services to Veterans such as acute hospital care, domiciliary care, long-term care, physical and occupational therapy, laboratory and radiology services, an outpatient department, and a social services department. There are two state Soldiers’ Homes, one in Chelsea, the other in Holyoke.

Soldiers' Home in Chelsea : Established in 1882, the Soldiers' Home in Chelsea is a state-funded, fully accredited, multifaceted health care facility available to eligible Veterans of the Commonwealth of MassaChelsea Soldiers Homechusetts. The Soldiers' Home is inspected annually by the Department of Veterans' Affairs and the Department of Public Health. The home features a dedicated Alzheimer's unit, as well as long-term and skilled nursing care.

The Soldiers' Home features its own library, dry cleaning, barber shops, an auditorium and recreation rooms, a dining room and canteen, and a dedicated pharmacy. Also available to residents are Catholic, Protestant and Jewish chaplains, counselor, recreational programs, regularly held beanos, coffee hours, and numerous outside trips. The safety and well-being of our residents is of paramount concern, as evidenced by our Campus Police Force, medical emergency alert system, and new fire alarm system. Residents can also fully utilize all the many clinics at the Outpatient Department for their health care needs.

Services are available to Veterans at no charge. The Home accepts medical insurance plans and requires that all Veterans provide disclosure of their insurance coverage. If insurance does not cover the service, or if the Veteran has no insurance, there is never an out-of-pocket charge.
Soldiers' Home in Chelsea Admission Information
Soldiers' Home in Chelsea Admission Application

Soldiers' Home in Holyoke : The Soldiers' Home in Holyoke is a state-funded, fully accredited health care facility that offers Veterans quality health care, including full-time residential accommodations, an on-site dental clinic, and a multi-service outpatient department. The Soldiers' Home in Holyoke operates a 247-bed long term nursing care facility with 24-hour licensed nursing staff. Primary care physicians are Soldiers Home Holyokeavailable for Veteran residents. The long-term nursing care facility includes a comfort care unit for Veterans who are in need of palliative care or hospice and an enhanced care unit for Veterans required additional physical occupational and respiratory services. Residential services include recreational activities.

In addition to long-term care, the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke also maintains a 30-room domiciliary for Veterans who require minimal assistance with activities of daily living. Veterans in the domiciliary are offered medical services through our outpatient department, and a social worker is available for case management.
Soldiers' Home in Holyoke Admission Information
Soldiers' Home in Holyoke Admission Application
Who is eligible for care at the Massachusetts Soldiers’ Homes?
Qualified Veterans include those who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States for 90 consecutive days, one of which was during a time of war; and those who received an honorable military discharge. In certain instances, a Veteran may have served 180 days of regular, active service and also qualify for services from the Soldiers' Home in Holyoke. Please consult Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 4, Section 7, Clause 43 for more information on these instances.

Copies of your military separation papers (DD214) must be presented to our admissions office in order to determine eligibility for services provided by the Soldiers' Homes.

Please note that under Massachusetts Law, Veterans cannot be admitted or treated in the Outpatient Department for:

  • Service-connected cases for service-connected disabilities

  • Industrial accident cases; or

  • Automobile accident cases involving insurance and liability of another.

Massachusetts Soldiers’ Homes Eligibility Information

Learn more about the Massachusetts Soldiers' Homes

Massachusetts State Veterans’ Memorial Cemeteries: There are two state Veterans' cemeteries in Massachusetts, the Massachusetts Veterans' Memorial Cemetery at Agawam and the Massachusetts Veterans' Memorial Cemetery at Winchendon, where eligible Veterans can be buried at no cost. For eligible Spouses and dependents, a $300 fee for a full-casket burial or a $150 fee for a cremation burial are charged. A $200 fee is charged for all dis-interments. All committal services are conducted in the chapel; there is no graveside service allowed. MA Veterans Cemetery Agawam
Who is eligible for Burial in Massachusetts State Veterans’ Memorial Cemeteries? Eligibility for Veteran's interment at the state cemeteries is based on the following guidelines:

Military Service:

  • The Veteran was discharged or released from active duty service (other than for training purposes) under honorable conditions. **. OR

  • The Veteran served at least 20 years in the National Guard or United States Reserves and is in receipt of a military pension or has documentation verifying they will receive retirement pay at age 60, in accordance with Title 10, Chapter 1223. A copy of Title 10 letter and all other documentation must be provided. OR

  • Any member of the Armed Forces of the United States who dies on active duty and whose home of record is Massachusetts.

**With certain exceptions, service beginning after September 7, 1980, as an enlisted person, and service after October 16, 1981, as an officer, must be for a minimum of 24 months OR the full peri-od for which the Veteran was called to active duty. (Examples include those serving less than 24 months in the Gulf War or Reservists that were federalized by Presidential Act.)

Residency:Winchendon Cemetery

  • "Home of Record” at the time of entry into active service, on DD214, is Massachusetts. OR proof of Massachusetts residency

    • Photocopy of Veteran’s Massachusetts Driver’s License; or

    • An original letter from city/ town clerk verifying residency after discharge

Marriage:

  • Veteran and Spouse must be legally married

  • A former Spouse of an eligible Veteran whose marriage to that Veteran has been terminated by annulment or divorce is not eligible.

Dependent Children:

  • Deceased unmarried minor Child, under 21 years of age, or 23 if attending a course of instruction at an approved educational institution full time

  • Unmarried adult Child incapable of self-support with physical or mental disability acquired before age 21, or 23 if attending a course of instruction at an approved educational institution.

For more information, please contact the desired cemetery using the following information:

Massachusetts Veterans' Memorial Cemetery at Agawam
1390 Main Street
Agawam, MA 01001
Phone: 413-821-9500
Fax: 413-821-9839

Massachusetts Veterans' Memorial Cemetery at Winchendon
111 Glenallen Street
Winchendon, MA 01475
Phone: 978-297-9501
Fax: 978-297-4271

Massachusetts State Veterans' Cemeteries Brochure

Learn more about Massachusetts State Veterans’ Memorial Cemeteries

Access to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for Veterans, Service Members and Family Members: The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) has a Veteran outreach initiative to reach Veterans and enroll them in SNAP (Formerly knowns as Food Stamps) to reduce food insecurity. This includes Veterans, active duty, reserve and guard Service members, and their Families. The Average SNAP Benefit is $215 in Massachusetts.

These efforts include:

  • Recruiting Veteran organizations and VSOs as outreach partners

  • Hosting regional trainings on Veterans’ food security

  • The creation of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Veterans’ Guide

  • Hosting resource fairs for Veterans

  • Participating in Department of Veterans’ Services Annual Conference.

Food Assistance (SNAP) for Prior and Active Service Members Brochure
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Veterans' Guide

Learn more about Access to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for Veterans, Service Members and Family Members

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U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Facilities in Massachusetts

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Facilities in Massachusetts: The VA has numerous resources available for Veterans and Family members. Please see the local location listing for your nearest facility.

MA National CemeteryLearn more about U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Facilities in Massachusetts

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Cemeteries in Massachusetts: The Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) National Cemetery Administration maintains three national cemeteries in Massachusetts. Please see the local location listing for the nearest cemetery.

Learn more about U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Cemeteries in Massachusetts

Department of Veterans' Services
600 Washington St, 7th Floor
Boston, MA 02111
Phone: 617-210-5480
Fax: 617-210-5755
Email: MDVS@vet.state.ma.us
Employee Directory - Department of Veterans' Services

Learn more about the Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services

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Military Installations in Massachusetts

Please see the Massachusetts Military Resource Locator for additional information

Active Duty

Army
Devens Reserve Forces Training Area

Natick Soldiers Systems Center

Air Force
Hanscom Air Force Base

National Guard
Massachusetts Army and Air National Guard
Joint Base Cape Cod

Massachusetts Army National Guard
Camp Curtis Guild

Massachusetts Air National Guard
102nd Intelligence Wing

104th Fighter Wing

United States Army Reserve (USAR)
99th Readiness Division


Resources

Massachusetts Department of Veterans Services

Mass Vets Advisor

Air National Guard Benefits

Army National Guard Benefits

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Facility Directory Massachusetts

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Find Locations Search Engine

Massachusetts Tax information for Resident and Nonresident Military Personnel

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Military and Veteran Information

Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Motor Vehicle Benefits

Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles, Veteran and Military License Plates

Massachusetts Veterans' Job Programs and Services

FEDSHIREVETS, Veterans Preference

U.S. Department of Labor, Veteran's Employment and Career Transition Advisor

Military Interstate Children's Compact Commission, Massachusetts

Massachusetts Veterans' Laws and Benefits Guide

Massachusetts General Laws

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Document Review Date: 12 November 2020