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Summary of Wisconsin Military and Veterans Benefits: Wisconsin offers special benefits and services for its military Service members and Veterans in order to supplement and complement those provided to Veterans by the Federal government. These include benefits, programs, and services to assist Wisconsin Veterans in enhancing their education and employment, traveling to Federal VA medical appointments, obtaining needed health care services not provided by Federal VA health care, overcoming barriers to employment, and obtaining needed subsistence assistance in emergency situations, assistance in discharge upgrades and obtaining medals that were not issued or lost, among many others.
Wisconsin Military and Veterans State Benefit Highlights and Eligibility
Wisconsin Individual Income Taxes on Military Pay: Regular pay received by Wisconsin residents serving in the military on active duty or on inactive Reserve duty or in the Wisconsin National Guard is not exempted from income tax.
Proof of filing a Wisconsin income form is frequently one of the components used in determining Wisconsin residency to establish general eligibility for Wisconsin state Veterans benefits, the Wisconsin GI Bill, the Wisconsin Veterans & Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit, and Residency for Tuition at UW institutions.
Residents of another state who are stationed in Wisconsin are not subject to Wisconsin income tax on their military pay unless they change their state of residency to Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Individual Income Tax Exemption for Mobilized Reserve/Guard Pay: For taxable years beginning in 2004 and thereafter, military pay received by certain members of the Reserves and National Guard may also be exempt for Wisconsin tax purposes.
Who is eligible for the Wisconsin Individual Income Tax Exemption for Mobilized Reserve/Guard Pay? Military pay must have been received from the Federal government after being called into active Federal service or into special state service authorized by the Federal Department of Defense. The pay must have been for a period of time during which the Reserve or National Guard member was on active duty. This exemption does not apply to military pay that members of the Reserves or National Guard receive during their weekend and two-week annual training.
For additional information, see the Wisconsin Department of Revenue, Income Tax Information for Military Personnel, Fact Sheet 1118 .
Wisconsin Individual Income Taxes Combat Pay Exemption: Military pay that is exempt from Federal taxation, such as combat pay, or hazardous duty pay is also exempt from state taxation.
Wisconsin Individual Income Taxes Death Gratuity Exemption: The death gratuity paid to the surviving dependent in the event of a line of duty death of a military Service member is exempt from Wisconsin individual income taxes.
Wisconsin Retired Military Pay Income Taxes: Payments received from the Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) for military retirement pay are not taxable in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin Individual Income Taxes Extension in Filing Deadline: Any extension of time allowed under federal law for filing your federal income tax return also applies for Wisconsin. For example, if you are on military duty outside the United States and Puerto Rico on April 15, you are allowed an automatic two-month extension and an additional four-month extension of time to file your federal return.
Wisconsin State Taxes on U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Military Disability Retired Pay: Military Disability Retirement Pay received as a pension, annuity or similar allowance for personal injury or sickness resulting from active service in the Armed Forces should not be included in taxable income if any of the following conditions apply:
You were entitled to receive a disability payment before September 25, 1975;
You were a member of the military (active or reserves) or were under a binding written commitment to become a member on September 24, 1975;
You receive disability payments for a combat-related injury. This is a personal injury or sickness that:
Resulted directly from armed conflict,
Took place while you were engaged in extra-hazardous service,
Took place under conditions simulating, including training exercises such as maneuvers, or
Was caused by an instrumentality of war.
You would be entitled to receive disability compensation from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) if you filed an application for it (the exclusion under this condition equals the amount you would be entitled to from the VA).
Wisconsin 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.
Military Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP)/ Reserve Component Survivor Benefit Plan (RCSBP)/ Retired Serviceman’s Family Protection Plan (RSFPP) Wisconsin State Tax Benefits: Payments received from the U.S. military retirement system (including payments from the Retired Serviceman's Family Protection Plan and the Survivor Benefit Plan) are not taxable.
Wisconsin Veterans and Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit: The Wisconsin Veterans and Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit provides eligible Veterans and un-remarried, Surviving Spouses a refundable property tax credit for their primary, in-state residence and up to one acre of land. The Wisconsin Department of Veterans Affairs verifies the Veteran's eligibility for the program. The credit is administered by the Wisconsin Department of Revenue through the state income tax return.
Who is eligible for the Wisconsin Veterans and Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit? The definitions of an eligible Veteran and an eligible un-remarried Surviving Spouse are expanded to include:
A Veteran who had been a Wisconsin resident for a consecutive 5-year period after entering active duty or was a Wisconsin resident when entering active duty.
The Veteran must have either a Service Connected Disability (SCD) rating of 100 percent under 38 USC 1114 or 1134 or a 100% disability rating based on individual unemployability. Individual unemployability means a condition under which a Veteran has an SCD rating of either 60% under 38 USC 1114 or 1134 or two or more SCD conditions where one condition has at least a 40% scheduler rating and the combined scheduler rating for all conditions is at least 70%, and has an administrative adjustment added to the SCD, due to individual unemployability, such that the VA rates the Veteran 100% disabled.
Effective for taxable years, beginning on or after January 1, 2014. The Wisconsin Property Tax Credit is extended to include the un-remarried Surviving Spouse of an eligible Veteran, who following the Veteran’s death, began to receive and continues to receive Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) from the Federal VA.
No age requirement for the un-remarried Surviving Spouse.
In addition to the above requirements the Veteran would have had to be a resident of Wisconsin at the time of death for an un-remarried Spouse to qualify for the benefit.
Applicants who believe they may qualify should contact their local County Veterans Service Office (CVSO).
For program information, applications and instructions on how to apply see brochure Wisconsin Disabled Veterans and Unremarried Surviving Spouses Tax Credit Information, Instructions and Request Forms Booklet (WDVA B0106) .
Wisconsin Department of Revenue, Veteran and Surviving Spouses Property Tax Credit, Frequently Asked Questions
Wisconsin County Veteran Service Officer Directory
Wisconsin GI Bill Tuition Remission Program: The Wisconsin GI Bill remits (forgives) full tuition and segregated fees for eligible Veterans and their dependents for up to eight full-time semesters or 128 credits, whichever is greater, at any University of Wisconsin System or Wisconsin Technical College System school. The Wisconsin GI Bill is a state program that is entirely separate from the Federal GI Bill.
Who is eligible for the Wisconsin GI Bill Tuition Remission Program? The Veteran must have entered service as a Wisconsin resident and the benefit recipient must reside in Wisconsin. Character of service and active duty service requirements apply. For Veterans, there is no post-service time limitation (such as the Federal Montgomery G.I. Bill 10-year delimiting date) on the use of the benefit. The Veteran may attend full- or part-time. The benefit may be used for continuing education, or for study at the undergraduate or graduate level.