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What Benefits Can the Modern U.S. Veteran Expect?

Several different types of benefits are currently available to United States military veterans. The federal Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers a wide range of benefits and services for veterans and their families and survivors. If you are having trouble securing veterans’ benefits, a veterans’ benefits attorney such as one at Johnston Law Offices P.C. in Edwardsville, IL, can help answer your questions.

The benefits for which a particular veteran, family member, or survivor may be eligible vary depending on individual circumstances and on the benefit’s requirements. Examples of factors that may influence eligibility for a particular benefit:

  • Discharge status other than honorable
  • Current incarceration or parole status
  • Veteran wanted for felony
  • Whether service was during wartime or in a particular conflict
  • Income or asset level
  • Disability status (extent, type and whether service-connected)
  • Age
  • Homelessness

Questions about eligibility can be answered by a lawyer or by the VA. Helpful information is available on the VA website.

Types of VA Benefits

Broadly, types of VA benefits available include:

  • Medical and dental care, including mental health and substance-abuse treatment; the VA operates a large system of hospitals, clinics, and counseling centers.
  • Pharmaceutical services, medical equipment, and home alteration
  • Medical rehabilitation services
  • Nursing home care – the VA manages its own nursing homes, contributes funding to state nursing homes and contracts with private nursing homes.
  • In-home care, respite care, and home hospice care
  • Vocational services, including rehabilitation, retraining, small business support, and employment support
  • Home loan guaranties and other housing benefits
  • Disability compensation and pension programs
  • Automobile adaptation
  • Retirement benefits
  • Education benefits
  • Life insurance
  • Cemetery and burial benefits – national and other veterans’ cemeteries, grave markers, flags, burial expenses, military honors, and presidential memorial certificates
  • Survivors’ benefits – bereavement counseling, death pensions, dependency and indemnity compensation, education benefits, medical care, home loan guaranties, no-fee passports to visit overseas graves and memorials
  • Special benefits and services for veterans of certain conflicts and their families and survivors for health conditions or birth defects from exposure to dangerous substances, such as Agent Orange and radiation

Other Benefits

In addition to the VA, other federal agencies provide some special benefits and services to veterans and their families and survivors. For example:

  • Citizenship and naturalization preferences from US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)
  • Business development support from the Small Business Administration (SBA)
  • Social security disability and SSI benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA)
  • Commissary and exchange privileges through the Department of Defense (DOD)
  • Housing from the Armed Forces Retirement home in Washington, DC

Added or supplementary benefits or services may be provided by individual state governments. Contact your state’s veterans’ affairs agency for more information.


Unfortunately, securing the government benefits to which you are entitled as a veteran or the family member or survivor of a veteran can be difficult. Currently, many applicants experience long delays in the processing of their applications, are wrongly denied benefits, or receive inadequate services. You may have appeal rights or other legal recourse. If you are experiencing any of these problems with your veterans’ benefits application, a veterans’ benefits lawyer from Johnston Law Offices P.C. in Edwardsville, IL, can assist you.

DISCLAIMER: This site and any information contained herein are intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. Seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter.

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