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Veteran Benefits for Idaho

The state of Idaho offers many veteran benefits for service members and Veterans that have served in the Armed Forces of the United States of America. These benefits include income and property tax exemptions, financial exemptions, education and training programs, hunting and fishing licenses, vehicle registrations, and assistance with employment. Your residency, military career, and disability status may result in certain differences in what benefits you may be eligible for. The following are benefits for the state of Idaho.

Idaho Veteran Financial Benefits

  • Resident Service Member Military Income Not Taxed when Stationed Outside Idaho: When stationed outside the State of Idaho, active duty military are exempt from Idaho state income tax. The full-time duty must be continuous and uninterrupted for 120 consecutive days or more.
  • Idaho Retired Military Pay Income Taxes: Retirement benefits paid by the United States to a retired member of the U.S. Military or the un-remarried Surviving Spouse of such member if the recipient is age 65 or older or disabled and age 62 or older are deductible. The amount deducted must be reduced by retirement benefits paid under the Federal Social Security Act and the Federal Railroad Retirement Act.
  • Idaho 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) Idaho State Tax Benefits: Retirement benefits paid by the United States to an un-remarried Surviving Spouse of a Service member if the recipient is age 65 or older or disabled and age 62 or older are deductible.
  • Idaho Military Spouses Residency Relief ActThe earned income of qualifying Spouses of Idaho Service members is no longer subject to Idaho income tax due to the federal Military Spouses Residency Relief Act (SR 475, HR 1182) passed in November of 2009.
  • Idaho Property Tax Reduction (Circuit Breaker) Program: The Property Tax Reduction (Circuit Breaker) Program reduces property taxes for qualified applicants. The amount of the reduction is based on income from the previous calendar year. If you qualify, the property taxes on your home and up to one acre of land may be reduced by as much as $1,320.You may qualify for a property tax reduction in 2018 if you meet the following requirements:
    • Owned and lived in a home or mobile home in Idaho that was your primary residence before April 15, 2019
    • Had income of $30,050 or less for 2018
    • Met one or more of the following status requirements as of January 1, 2019:
      • Age 65 or older
      • Surviving Spouse
      • Blind
      • Fatherless or motherless child under 18 years of age
      • Former prisoner of war/hostage
      • A Veteran with at least 10% service-connected disability or receiving VA pension for a non-service-connected disability
      • Disabled as recognized by the Social Security Administration, Railroad Retirement Board, or Federal Civil Service. If you’re not covered by the listed agencies, then disabled as recognized by a public employee retirement system.

Sales Tax:

  • Statewide: 6.0%
  • Counties: can levy an additional sales tax of no more than 3.0%
  • Current average sales tax (with local taxes included): 6.037% (prescription medicines are exempt)

Recreation

Idaho State Parks Veterans Pass: Idaho resident 100% service-connected disabled veterans get free access and camping at Idaho State Parks.

Hunting & Fishing Licenses: Resident disabled veterans may be eligible for reduced fees for licenses and tags. Nonresident disabled Veterans with a VA disability rating of at least 40 percent are eligible for nonresident DAV reduced fees for licenses and tags.

Education Programs

Idaho National Guard State Tuition Assistance Program: This program will pay up to $4000 per state fiscal year to attend any public or private institution of higher education in Idaho, a vocational education school, or a community college. Courses can be reimbursed if they are not paid for by any other funding or educational program.
In order to be eligible for Idaho State Education Assistance reimbursement students must meet the following membership criteria:

  • A member of the Idaho National Guard
  • Graduate of Basic Military/Combat Training
  • Have more than 2 years remaining of military service obligation at the start date of the class
  • Must maintain an active and satisfactory status in the Idaho National Guard throughout the entire course/term for which reimbursement is tendered
  • Courses which end after Expiration Term of Service (ETS) date are not eligible for reimbursement
  • Service members must apply with all required and completed documents to the respective (Idaho Army/Air NG) Education office prior to the class start date in order to receive authorization for tuition and registration fees reimbursement
  • Service members must submit proof of satisfactory course completion within 30 days of course completion or no later than 10 days prior to the end of the State fiscal year (30 June) whichever comes first, with a minimum grade of a C, in order to receive reimbursement for approved tuition and registration fees reimbursement application

Housing: The following are the sites for Veterans Homes

Idaho State Veterans Home at Boise

Idaho State Veterans Home at Lewiston

Idaho State Veterans Home at Pocatello

Eligibility for admission:

  • Applicants may be peacetime or wartime veterans, and their spouses, with wartime veterans receiving priority admission status
  • Must have served at least 90 days
  • Must be honorably discharged
  • Must be a resident of the State of Idaho
  • Spouses or widows of veterans (eligible for nursing care only) will need to provide proof of marriage when they apply
  • Veterans may be admitted without regard to their financial status
  • Must apply for and be eligible for Medicaid benefits or must pay a monthly fee

Employment and Job Training: Veterans Preference

Idaho state employment gives preference points for active duty Veterans. Honorably discharged Veterans get 5 preference points, disabled Veterans get 10 preference points. Un-remarried surviving spouses can get the same points as the Veteran.

Idaho Professional License Benefits for Service Members and Spouses: All persons holding occupational or professional licenses issued by the State of Idaho and who are serving in the Armed Forces of the United States, shall be exempt from the payment of any professional or occupational license or renewal fee required by any law of this state for the period during which such persons shall be engaged in the military services of the United States. And during such period of military service, or service in the auxiliary branches thereof, or servitude and for six months following the discharge from such military service or auxiliary service or servitude in the present war, such license shall remain in good standing without the necessity of renewal and during said period the same shall not be canceled, suspended or revoked. Please note that state professional and occupational licensing boards may accept your military education, training, and experience toward meeting the qualifications for a license, certification or registration. Boards may also expedite your application or the application of your Spouse. Additionally, if you already hold an active Idaho license and are on active duty in the United States Armed Forces, your license will remain active without renewing it for six months following your discharge from active duty. Please contact the board and provide them with the materials to document your active military status before your renewal date. Service members in possession of an occupational or professional license issued by the State of Idaho on active duty and the six months following discharge are eligible.

Idaho State Employee Leave for Military Duty: All officers and employees of the state of Idaho who shall be members of the national guard or who shall be reservists in the Armed Forces of the United States shall be entitled each calendar year to one hundred twenty (120) hours of military leave of absence from their respective duties without loss of pay, time, or efficiency rating during which they shall be engaged in military duty ordered or authorized under the provisions of law. National Guard or Reserve Service members that are state employees are eligible for military leave.

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 the Department of Labor assistance in processing claims.

Burials and Memorials

Please note that your preference regarding burial in a national cemetery and use of a headstone provided by VA should be documented and kept with your paperwork and medical records. The eligibility requirements for burial at the Idaho State Veterans Cemetery follow the National Veterans Cemetery eligibility requirements and Idaho law. There is no requirement to be a resident of the state of Idaho.

National Cemeteries include:

Boise: Idaho State Veterans Cemetery

Idaho VA Benefit Resources

Idaho provides Veterans with a Regional Benefits Office and a VA Medical Center.

Idaho VA Regional Benefits Office

Idaho VA Medical Centers

Important information for Idaho Veteran Benefits:

For Veterans applying for VA benefits for the first time, you must submit a copy of your DD 214 (discharge paperwork). This will provide your discharge status, along with your full name, social security number, branch of service, and dates for which you served. Honorable and general discharges qualify a Veteran for most VA benefits.

You should always keep your paperwork, along with your medical records, in a safe place where you and your family can have access to them. It is imperative to have it in a location where it cannot be destroyed or tampered with, which includes a safe.

Your eligibility for most VA benefits is based upon discharge from active military service under other than dishonorable conditions. Active service means full-time service as a member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, or as a commissioned officer of the Public Health Service, the Environmental Services Administration or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Any Veteran discharged from the military under the conditions of “Dishonorable” due to bad conduct discharges issued by general courts-martial may bar VA benefits. Veterans in prison and parolees may be eligible for certain VA benefits. VA regional offices can clarify the eligibility of prisoners, parolees, and individuals with multiple discharges issued under differing conditions.

*This information is accurate as of December 2019

Idaho Veteran Benefits

If you are a disabled Veteran in Idaho and are VA rated 90% or less, you may be eligible for additional benefits. Contact Veterans Guardian for a free consultation with no obligation. Let us review your claim to determine whether you qualify for additional benefits.

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