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Veteran Benefits for Indiana

The state of Indiana 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 Indiana.

Indiana Veteran Financial Benefits

  • Income Tax: Up to $5,000 of active duty pay is tax-free. Up to $6,250 of retired pay is tax-free.
  • Income Tax Military Service, Retirement Income or Survivor’s Benefits Deductions: New for 2019 Effective January 1at, 2019 an adjusted gross income tax deduction for income from retirement or Survivor’s benefits received during the taxable year by the individual, or the individual’s Surviving Spouse, for the individual’s service in an active or reserve component of the Armed Forces of the United States, including the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marine Corps, Merchant Marine, Indiana Army National Guard, or Indiana Air National Guard.
  • Indiana Nonresident Military Spouse Earned Income Deduction: The Military Spouses Residency Relief Act (P.L. No. 111-97) was signed into law on Nov 11, 2009. This law allows a military Service member’s Spouse to keep a tax domicile throughout the marriage under certain conditions and applies to income earned after December 31st, 2008.
  • 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.
  • Disabled Veteran Property Tax Deduction: Property tax deductions are available to disabled Veterans who have an honorable discharge. This amount is deducted from the value of your home for tax purposes, leaving you with a smaller property tax bill. A $24,960 dollar deduction is available to wartime veterans who have at least a 10 percent VA disability. Up to a $12,480 deduction is available to Veterans who are at least 62 with at least a 10 percent VA disability OR have a VA total disability. This deduction is not available if the assessed value of the real property owned by the veteran is in excess of $175,000.

Sales Tax:

  • Statewide: 7.0%
  • Counties: cannot levy an additional sales tax
  • Current average sales tax (with local taxes included): 7.0%

Recreation

State Parks: A Hoosier Golden Passport provides unlimited admission to all Indiana state-owned parks, recreation areas, reservoirs, forests, historic sites, museums, memorials and other Department of Natural Resource (DNR) facilities. The pass is good for one calendar year. Persons eligible for a Disabled American Veteran license plate may purchase the Hoosier Golden Passport at DNR facilities around the State. If you have Disabled American Veteran plates on the vehicle simply drive to the gate and the attendant will sell you the Hoosier Golden Passport. If you do not have the plate but believe you are eligible you will be given a form to request the plate, which you must send to the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs for verification.

Hunting And Fishing Licenses For Disabled Veterans: Any Indiana resident who is service-connected disabled by the VA can buy an Indiana hunting & fishing license for a reduced fee.

Hunting and Fishing Licenses For Active Duty Residents: Active duty Indiana residents who are carrying leave orders and a valid Indiana driver’s license or voter registration card are exempt from purchasing a hunting or fishing license. Non-resident military personnel on active duty and stationed within Indiana qualify for a resident license.

Education Programs

Free Tuition For Children of Disabled Veterans: Indiana offers free tuition at state schools to children of disabled Veterans, Purple Heart Recipients and their children, and children of former POW/MIA. The benefit may be as high as free tuition and fees for 124 credit hours and is good at state schools.

The Veteran must have:

  • been a resident of Indiana for 36 consecutive months
  • served in a wartime period (including August 2, 1990 – present) or received a Purple Heart Medal

Free Tuition For Purple Heart Recipients: Indiana residents who were awarded the Purple Heart are eligible for free tuition and fees at Indiana state schools.

National Guard Deployment Protection: National Guard members from Indiana or an adjoining state who attend an Indiana public university are entitled to a tuition refund or credit and guaranteed re-enrollment if they are called to active duty during an academic term.

USS Indianapolis Crew-members Free Tuition: Sailors from any state who serve on the new USS Indiana submarine for at least 180 days are entitled to pay in-state tuition at Indiana’s public universities if they enroll within one year of receiving an honorable discharge.

Housing: The following are the sites for Veterans Homes

Indiana State Veterans Home at West Lafayette

Eligibility for admission:

  • Veterans must be honorably discharged
  • Veterans must be residents of Illinois for at least 12 months
  • Spouses, surviving spouses, and Gold Star parents of Veterans are also eligible
  • Monthly costs are based on income

Employment and Job Training: Veteran’s Preference

State Employment Veterans Preference: Indiana offers Veterans preference in state government jobs for honorably discharged Veterans.

Military CDL Skills Waiver Program: The BMV may waive the required drive skills test for Veterans with specific training and were truck drivers during their military service when they apply for an Indiana Commercial Driver’s License.

Next Level Veterans Program: The state will help you apply for a job with dozens of corporations, and if hired will pay you $5,000 to relocate to Indiana. Check out their website for more information.

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. Eligibility for interment in the State Veterans Cemetery follows National Cemetery Administration eligibility requirements. Spouses may also be eligible for burial.

National Cemeteries include:

Indianapolis: Crown Hill Cemetery Confederate Plot

Indianapolis: Crown Hill National Cemetery

Marion: Marion National Cemetery

New Albany: New Albany National Cemetery

Terre Haute: Woodlawn Monument Site

Indiana VA Benefit Resources

Indiana provides Veterans with a District Benefits Office and a Regional Benefits Office, along with VA Medical Centers.

Indiana VA District Benefits Office

Indiana VA Regional Benefits Office

Indiana VA Medical Centers

Important information for Indiana 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

Indiana Veteran Benefits

If you are a disabled Veteran in Indiana 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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