Veteran Benefits for New Jersey
The state of New Jersey 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 New Jersey.
New Jersey Veteran Financial Benefits
- Income Tax: Service members who were New Jersey residents before entering the military, and active-duty service member’s income pay is not subject to state taxes. Military retirement pay is tax-free. You must meet the following to be eligible.
You may be eligible if you:
-did not maintain any permanent home in New Jersey during the tax year
-spent less than 30 days in New Jersey state during the tax year
-maintained a permanent home outside New Jersey during the entire year (barracks, bachelor officers´ quarters, quarters assigned on vessel do not count as a permanent home). However, if you pay for and maintain, either by out-of-pocket payments or forfeiture of quarters allowance, an apartment or home (either owned or rented) outside New Jersey, that does count as a permanent home outside New Jersey.
- Veteran Income Tax Deduction: Honorably discharged Veterans qualify for a one-time $3,000 tax deduction in the year they are discharged from active duty.
- New Jersey Property Tax Deduction: Honorably discharged New Jersey resident Veterans who served at least 14 days in a combat zone are eligible for an annual $250 property tax deduction. Permanently and totally disabled war Veterans can qualify for a total exemption of property tax on their home. Surviving spouses may also be eligible.
- New Jersey Catastrophic Entitlement: New Jersey resident Veterans who have a 100% disability rating are eligible for a monthly payment of $62.50. The Veteran must have a qualifying disability which includes loss of sight, amputation of limbs, paralysis, and others. Surviving spouses may also be eligible.
- Statewide: 6.625%
- Counties: cannot levy any additional sales tax
- Common Exceptions at the state level:
- Prescription medications are exempt
- Unprepared foods are exempt
- Clothing expenses are exempt
Fishing and Hunting Licenses for Disabled Veterans: Honorably discharged New Jersey disabled Veterans can obtain a free hunting & fishing license, as well as pheasant, quail and trout stamps. Active duty members, no matter where they are stationed, can get a New Jersey hunting, fishing, and trapping license at the residential rate.
Licenses for NJ National Guard Members: Eligible active-duty New Jersey National Guard personnel are eligible for a free license, permit, and stamp.
War Orphans Tuition Assistance: Children of military members who died while in the military or due to service-connected disabilities, or who are officially listed as MIA can get $500 per year for four years of college or equivalent training. To qualify, the child must be a resident of New Jersey for at least one year immediately preceding the filing of the application and be between the ages of 16 and 21 at the time of application. The veteran must have also been a state resident.
Housing: The following are the sites for Veterans Homes
Eligibility for admission:
- Discharged other than on dishonorable accounts
- Spouse and Gold Star Parents may be eligible for admission
- New Jersey resident Veterans get preference
- Veterans pay based on their income
Veterans Haven – Veterans Haven is a transitional housing program for homeless veterans. The program is divided into three phases: treatment; self-reclamation; and community reintegration. Each phase lasts three to six months and is tailored to individual treatment needs and vocational interests. Eligible veterans are referred from a VA Medical Center after receiving a medical evaluation. To be admitted into the program, the veteran must agree to a long-term program focusing on psychological, social and vocational rehabilitation. The program is drug and alcohol-free.
Locations are in Glen Gardner and Winslow.
Employment and Job Training: Veterans Preference
When applying for New Jersey state jobs qualified veterans who receive a passing score are placed at the top of open competitive employment lists.
Disabled Veterans with at least a 10 percent disability are given the highest preference, being placed above both veterans and others on open competitive employment lists. The spouse of a Disabled Veteran is entitled to the same preference as the disabled veteran, however, the veteran loses their entitlement if the spouse gets it. The surviving spouse of a Disabled Veteran is entitled to the same preference as the disabled Veteran until they remarry. The surviving spouse of any Veteran who died in service is entitled to the disabled veteran preference until they remarry.
CDL License – Veterans who have or had a military commercial driver’s license are exempt from the behind-the-wheel portion of the CDL license exam.
Veterans Status for Pensions – Veterans employed by the state can qualify for special retirement benefits.
This applies only to those covered by:
-New Jersey Public Employees’ Retirement System (PERS)
-Police and Firemen’s Retirement System (PFRS)
-New Jersey Teachers’ Pension and Annuity Fund (TPAF)
Veterans Retirement is different than the standard retirement available to most enrolled in the above pension funds and includes the ability to retire at age 55 (with 25 years of service) and offers a more generous calculation of your maximum annual allowance during retirement.
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.
National Cemeteries include:
Beverly: Beverly National Cemetery
Pennsville: Finn’s Point National Cemetery
New Jersey VA Benefit Resources
New Hampshire provides Veterans with a Regional Benefits Office and VA Medical Centers.
New Jersey VA Regional Benefits Office
- Newark: Newark Regional Office
New Jersey VA Medical Centers
- East Orange: East Orange Campus of the VA New Jersey Health Care System
- Lyons: Lyons Campus of the VA New Jersey Health Care System
Important information for New Jersey 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
New Jersey Veteran Benefits
If you are a disabled Veteran in New Jersey 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.