Commonwealth of Puerto Rico Military and Veteran Benefits
Department of Driver Services (DDS) Benefits
Health Insurance Benefits
Military Resource Locator
Parks and Recreation
Veterans Administration (VA) Medical Facilities
Summary of Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Benefits: Puerto Rico offers special benefits for its military Service members and Veterans including income tax advantages, property tax exemptions, education and tuition assistance, as well as injury and death benefits. Eligibility for some benefits may depend on residency, military component and Veteran disability status.
Territory of Puerto Rico Benefit Highlights and Eligibility
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Tax Benefits?
Territory of Puerto Rico Military Pay Taxes: Resident military personnel stationed in Puerto Rico must pay taxes on all military Pay earned in Puerto Rico. Puerto Rican Resident Service members stationed outside Puerto Rico do not have to pay income tax in Puerto Rico but must pay U.S. income tax for money earned outside of Puerto Rico.
Territory of Puerto Rico Military Retirement Pay Taxes: Puerto Rico taxes all income derived from outside of the territory. For Retired pay Puerto Rico taxes military retirement based on where you served. For example, if you retired after 20 years, served five years in Puerto Rico and 15 outside Puerto Rico, then 3/4s of your retirement income is taxed.
Territory of Puerto Rico Retirement Pension Aged Based Tax Deduction: Puerto Rico offers a tax reduction based on age for those receiving a retirement pension or annuity from the U.S. Government. Those under age 60 have a standard deduction of $11,000, those over age 60 are authorized a $15,000 deduction.
Territory of Puerto Rico Veteran Tax Exemptions: If you are a resident of Puerto Rico and a Veteran of the United States Armed Forces you are entitled to an additional personal exemption of $1,500. If married filing jointly and both Spouses are Veterans, the exemption is $3,000.
Territory of Puerto Rico Veteran Property Tax Exemptions: There are several types property tax exemptions, each with its own eligibility criteria and level of exemption ranging from $500 to a complete property tax exemption.
Territory of Puerto Rico (Regular) Veteran Property Tax Exemption: The dwelling that a Veteran builds and acquires in good faith for their residence, or Family's residence, shall be exempted from the imposition and payment of property taxes for up to $5,000 for its appraised taxable value. If the building has more than one dwelling, the appraised taxable value, for the purposes of the exemption, shall be the proportional part, which corresponds to the dwelling occupied by a Veteran, of the total value of the building and the lot, as determined by the Secretary of the Treasury. This exemption will pass to the Surviving Spouse as long as they do not re-marry.
Territory of Puerto Rico Totally Disabled Veterans Property Tax Exemption: Any house built, acquired or remodeled or to be built, acquired or remodeled in the future by a 100% disabled Veteran and the lot where the same is located which does not exceed 1,000 square meters in urban zones or 1 cuerda in rural zones, shall be totally exempt from the payment of property taxes, provided the same is the place of residence of the disabled Veteran or their immediate Family.
Territory of Puerto Rico Service-Connected Disabled Veteran Property Tax Exemption: Any Veteran who receives disability compensation of 50% or more from the Veterans Administration shall be entitled to a property tax exemption on the first $50,000 of the appraised value of the property for taxation purposes.
The partial exemption in the payment of taxes is only be applicable to the tax which corresponds to the house built or acquired by a Veteran and the lot on which the same is built which does not exceed 1,000 square meters in the urban zone or 1 cuerda in the rural zone, provided that the house has been the place of residence of the Veteran or of the Veteran and their immediate Family in January 1 of the taxable year.
Territory of Puerto Rico, Tax Exoneration for Veteran Residential Purposes Model AS-38
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Education Benefits?
Puerto Rico National Guard (FIGNA) Tuition Assistance Fund Service Member Spouse and Dependents: Provides funding for Graduate Degree classes up to 18 credits, per fiscal year ( 1 July- 30 June); maximum of $75.00 per credit, and a maximum of $1,350.00 per year, undergraduate or vocational courses, up to 18 credits, maximum of $50.00; or the cost per credit according to the educational institution, whichever is less; and a maximum of $900.00 per year. Medical students are awarded a maximum of $1,000.00 annually for two years.
This is the only incentive that the Service member can assign to the Spouse or dependent (under 23 years of age). Children / stepchildren can claim up to bachelor’s degree. The Spouses can claim up to master’s degree. They can claim one degree at a time and in an ascending way. The military can assign the incentive one at a time.
Who is eligible for Puerto Rico National Guard (FIGNA) Tuition Assistance Fund Service Member Spouse and Dependents? To participate in the State Tuition Assistance program, National Guard Service members must be an active member and pay $5.00 monthly. Spouses and dependent Children of the Service member may also use the benefit.
Puerto Rico Army National Guard Benefit Information
Free Tuition at University of Puerto Rico and Regional Colleges for Puerto Rican Veterans: Puerto Rico provides benefits for a Veteran’s education if the Veteran did not have the GI Bill or if benefits have run out. These Veterans are entitled to free tuition at the University of Puerto Rico and its regional colleges.
Who is eligible for Free Tuition at University of Puerto Rico and Regional Colleges? Puerto Rican Veterans that do not have G.I. Bill Benefits or their benefits have run out are eligible for free tuition.
University of Puerto Rico Veterans Preference Request Form
Reduced Tuition at University of Puerto Rico and Regional Colleges for Dependents of Puerto Rican Veterans: Puerto Rico provides benefits for a Veteran’s dependents education. Dependents of Veterans are entitled to a 50% reduction in tuition at the University of Puerto Rico and its regional colleges
Children of Veteran Scholarship(s) Regiment 65th Infantry: Children of honorably discharged Veterans under the age of 26 or no limit of age for Children with documented physical or mental limitations may apply.
A minimum of a 2.5 GPA is required
12 credits minimum for bachelors or 6-9 credits for masters or doctorate
A copy of High school diploma is required. Proof of college admission, official high school or college transcripts, notarized paystub/income, and not have outstanding debt with U.S or the government of Puerto Rico (proof payment plan can be accepted).
Only one Child per Family may participate and not receive additional U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs benefits.
Government of Puerto Rico, 65th Infantry Regiment Scholarship Program Application
Puerto Rico Veteran Government Employees Receive Time Off to Complete Their Education: Any Veteran who is an official or employee of the Government of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, its agencies, instrumentalities, public or quasi-public corporations and the municipal governments, who wish to avail themselves of the benefits of any federal or Commonwealth legislation to pursue studies in Puerto Rico, in any other part of the United States or abroad, is entitled to solicit, and their immediate employer must grant, leave without pay for the whole period their studies should reasonable require.
Once the Veteran concludes their studies, and requests it within the following one hundred and eighty (180) days, they must be reinstated in the position or office they left in order to study or in another position or office of equal category, salary and rank.
Puerto Rico Education Benefit for Surviving Spouses and Children of Service Members Killed on Active Duty: The Children and/or the Surviving Spouse of Service members killed in action or Service members in active federal military service at the time of their death and whose death is military service-related shall have total exemption at the University of Puerto Rico and its campuses throughout Puerto Rico, as well at any postsecondary educational institution of the Commonwealth or its municipalities for tuition, fees, books and other materials needed for completing their university degree at the university undergraduate level, the technical-professional postsecondary level and the graduate and/or professional level.
High School Diplomas for Puerto Rican Wartime Veterans: All Puerto Rican Veterans who interrupted their high school studies to serve in the First and Second World Wars or in the Korean and Vietnam conflicts are entitled to solicit their high school diplomas from the Department of Education of Puerto Rico. This diploma may be conferred posthumously.
Readmission to a Puerto Rico University Institution For Service Members that are Called to Active Duty: A Puerto Rico university institution has the duty of guaranteeing that every Veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States who had been pursuing full or part time studies at that institution when called to active military service and must be readmitted to the study program. Readmission will not be subject to an evaluation process conducted by a readmissions committee or a like mechanism. Veterans will have priority registration for those academic courses they may have had to interrupt given the nature of the involuntary response to the call to active military service, provided these courses are being offered during the academic session to which they are applying for readmission. Veterans can apply for readmission for up to 1 year after their return from active service or for just cause. The readmission of students who conclude their active military service will not be subject to payment of the readmission application fee.
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Employment Benefits?
Puerto Rico Government Employment Veteran Hiring Preference and Reinstatement to Position Rights: The Government of Puerto Rico is obligate to give Veterans that meet employment requirements a hiring preference.
When a Veteran has to take any test or exam as part of an employment, reinstatement or promotion application and has obtained the minimum score required to qualify for employment, reinstatement or promotion to the corresponding position, the Veteran will have 10 points or 10%, whichever is greater, added to the Score they received.
In addition, when any Veteran who, due to being in active service, has not been able to take any competitive tests and who requests to take the test within 180 days after having returned to work; and if they passes any tests, the Veteran’s name is required to be included in the corresponding list or register.
Any Veteran or Reserve Component Service member, that is a Puerto Rico government employee, that is called to active service is entitled to be reinstated to the same or similar position so long as they make a formal request within 180 of an honorable discharge from active duty. If such a position does not exist, the Veteran will have placement priority in another position within the company or government agency, and the employer will be responsible for doing everything possible to train or retrain the Veteran.
The employee will retain all their rights and privileges including, but not to be understood as a limitation, their right to seniority as if they had continued occupying the position they had when they joined the Armed Forces as well as any development or growth in the position they occupied had they continued occupying the same position. The right to reemployment is extended for the period during which the Veteran is in active service in the Armed Forces, regardless of the number of years. This rule does not apply retroactively to those who have not previously been Veterans nor members of the reserve corps, and who voluntarily enlist as new members of the regular Armed Forces.
Service Credit in Puerto Rico Government Retirement System For Veterans: Any Veteran who for the first time enters the service of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, its agencies or instrumentalities, public or quasi-public corporations, or the municipal governments, and becomes a participating member in any of the government retirement systems or funds, is entitled at their request to be credited for retirement purposes for all the time they were in active services in the Armed Forces or pursuing studies totally or partially defrayed with funds provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs of the Government of the United States, including the time they were in active service in the Armed Forces prior to the effectiveness of this statute.
The Veteran will be required to pay the corresponding contributions plus simple annual interest at 6% according to their salary. Military service credit is limited to 5 years.
Federal Employment Veterans Hiring Preferences: 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 .
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 previous 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, the Service member is 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
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Division of Driver Services Benefits?
Discounted Auto registration for Puerto Rico National Guard Service Members: Puerto Rico National Guard members can benefit from a $35 discounted auto registration fee.
Free Puerto Rico Veterans License Plates: Puerto Rico offers one free license plate to qualifying Veterans. Additional can be requested at the cost of $10 plus an additional $2 for Proof of Internal Revenue. The license plate will belong to the Veteran, who must retain it at the time of selling the vehicle.
Who is eligible for free Puerto Rico License plates? Have been discharged from the Service Under Honorable Discharge Conditions you are required to submit certification issued by the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs or Form DD214
Application for a Special License Plate Application for Veterans
Puerto Rico Department of Driver Services Benefits for Disabled Veterans: The Territory of Puerto Rico offers a number of benefits for Puerto Rican Veterans. A short description of these benefits is listed below.
Automobiles Provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to Disabled Veterans Free from Taxes: The automobiles provided to disabled Veterans for their personal use by or through the help of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs are exempted from the tax on vehicles established in § 9010 of Title 13 and license fees. Any replacement vehicles are also be entitled to this exemption, provided that the automobile to be replaced has been in the possession of the Veteran for their personal use for a period of not less than 4 years.
100% Disabled Veterans Exempt from Fees for License Plates or Driver’s Licenses: Disabled Veterans who are exempt from the imposition of taxes on motor vehicles according to the Puerto Rico Internal Revenue Code of 1994, and those who have been declared one hundred percent (100%) disabled by the Veterans Administration, are not required to pay any fees for their license plate or when obtaining a driver’s license.
Exemption of Fees for Veterans over Age 60: Any Veterans of over 60 years of age, even if not classified as having a service-related disability, are entitled to an exemption of fees for the transfer of vehicle licenses, ex parte transfers, including those inspections made by the Department of Transportation and Public Works, license plates, titles and the renewal of drivers licenses.
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Health and Insurance Benefits?
Puerto Rico National Guard (FIGNA) and Retirees Group Insurance: The Institutional Trust of the FIGNA provides $5,000 in life insurance for Puerto Rico National Guard Service members and retirees.
Who is eligible for Puerto Rico National Guard (FIGNA) and Retirees Group Insurance? National Guard members or National Guard retirees up to 60 years old that have paid FIGNA until the time of retirement and have served 20 years or more in the Puerto Rico National Guard.
Puerto Rico National Guard Service Members Covered by Workers’ Compensation Laws while on Territorial Active Duty: National Guard Service members’ territorial active duty receive workers' compensation for any illness injury disability or death.
Who is eligible for Puerto Rico National Guard Service Members Covered by Workers’ Compensation Laws while on Territorial Active Duty? National Guard member serving on territorial active duty are considered territorial employees and are therefore covered by workers’ compensation laws.
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 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)
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 are not activated and covered by active duty TRICARE benefits.
Free Medical Care for Eligible Veterans and their Dependents: The Government of Puerto Rico will provide, without any cost whatsoever any medical attention, treatment, hospitalization and necessary medications, with an evaluation of their financial situation based on the criteria of the Federal Medical Assistance Program (Title 19 of the Federal Social Security Act), to Veterans, their Spouses and Children until they reach their legal age or the age of 25 if they are students. Any physically or mentally disabled Children of Veterans may receive these benefits without any age limit.
These benefits are extended to the Children of Veterans who died on the field of battle until they reach their legal age, in the case of students until they reach the age of 25 and in the case of physically or mentally disabled Children without any age limit whatsoever.
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Parks and Recreation Benefits?
Discounts for Veterans and their Dependents at Puerto Rico National Parks and Recreation Areas: Veterans, their Spouses and minor and/or disabled Children shall be entitled to a discount of 10% from the individual fee charged when visiting or soliciting services in areas belonging to National Parks such as beaches, zoos, aquariums, vacation centers and camping areas, as well as any other recreational area. This benefit is transferable to the Surviving Spouse and to the minor and/or disabled Children upon the death of the Veteran.
What are my Territory of Puerto Rico Military and Veterans Miscellaneous Benefits?
Puerto Rico National Guard Retiree Annuity until age 60: Puerto Rico National Guard retirees between the ages of 55 and 59 will receive $175 per month.
Who is eligible for the Puerto Rico National Guard Retiree Annuity until age 60? National Guard members upon retirement after 20 or more years of honorable and meritorious service until age 60 will receive a monthly annuity until age 60.
Puerto Rico National Guard Service Members and Retirees Funeral Insurance: Any person that can prove that they incurred the cost of the funeral for a National Guard Service member or retiree is eligible for $3000.00 to defray the funeral expenses.
Who is eligible for the Puerto Rico National Guard Service Members and Retirees Funeral Insurance? Active Service members and retirees of the Puerto Rico National Guard that have paid FIGNA until the time of retirement and have served 20 years or more in the Puerto Rico National Guard are eligible for funeral insurance until age 60.
Puerto Rico National Cemetery at Bayamon: Located in Bayamon serves over 150,000 Veterans in Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, the Caribbean Region, and Central and South America. The cemetery has the only Memorial Program Service Marker Processing Center site located in a national cemetery and outside of the United States.
Who is eligible for interment at the Puerto Rico National Cemetery at Bayamon? Service members who die on active duty, Veterans, their eligible Spouses and dependent Children. Complete eligibility information can be found at the National Cemetery Administration Eligibility webpage.
National Cemetery Administration Eligibility Webpage
War Surplus Property Exempt from Taxes for Puerto Rican Veterans: The war surplus property acquired by a Veteran is exempted all types of taxes or duties, provided that the surplus is for personal use and that it does not have a total value of more than $5,000.
Documents From Puerto Rico Government Offices Provided Free of Charge to Veterans and their Dependents: The offices or dependencies of the Government of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the municipal governments, such as the courts, registries, bureaus and others of the same or a similar nature, will issue free of charge, any documents that may be needed for official uses and for claiming any rights. The exempted documents include, (without this implying a limitation), criminal record documents, tax returns filed, income and property tax debt documents, civil registry documents and university credit transcripts, among others.
Who is eligible for Documents From Puerto Rico Government Offices Provided Free of Charge to Veterans and their Dependents? All Veterans, their Surviving Spouses, Spouses and minor Children are eligible for this benefit.
Puerto Rico Benefit for Veterans and Surviving Spouses when Applying for Public Assistance: In the case of an application by a Veteran or a Surviving Spouse of a Veteran for public assistance benefits which are conditioned by income level, the Special Monthly Pension supplementary payment granted for aid and attendance and for being homebound of the Department of Veterans Affairs will not be counted as income for the purpose of determining eligibility.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Facilities in Puerto Rico
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Facilities in Puerto Rico: The VA has numerous resources available for Veterans and Family members. Please see the local location listing for your nearest facility.
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Cemeteries in Puerto Rico: The Department of Veterans Affairs' (VA) National Cemetery Administration maintains one national cemeteries in Puerto Rico. Please see the local location listing for the nearest cemetery.
Military Installation in Puerto Rico
Please see the Puerto Rico Resource Locator for additional information.
Puerto Rico National Guard
United States Army Reserve (USAR)
81st Readiness Division