New York State Veteran's Benefits

The state of New York provides several veteran benefits. This section offers a brief description of each of the following benefits.

New York Veteran Housing Programs

State Veterans Home
A 242 bed veterans home is operated by the State Department of Health at Oxford, Chenango County, for veterans, spouses and certain parents. The Department of Health also operates a 250-bed facility at St. Albans, Queens, a 126-bed facility adjacent to the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Batavia, Genesee County and a 250-bed facility in Montrose, Westchester County.

A 350-bed Veterans Home is located on the campus of the State University of New York at Stony Brook, Long Island, and is operated by the university's Health Sciences Center. Health related care and skilled nursing services are available at all facilities.  Admission preference is based on severity of illness or disability and need for care.

New York State Homes For Veterans Program
Homes for Veterans Program offers fixed-rate mortgages with interest rates 0.5% below the already low interest rates charged on SONYMA mortgages with closing cost assistance.

Visit the New York Division of Veterans Services website for contact information and benefits assistance.

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New York Financial Assistance Benefits

Property Tax Exemption
Partial exemption from real property taxes is based on condition of service, with additional benefits based upon degree of service-connected disability. Applications must be filed before Taxable Status Day. Qualifying widow(er)s may file for benefit based on their spouse's service. Exemption applies to local and county property taxes.

Supplemental Burial Allowance
A supplemental burial allowance of up to $6,000 is authorized for certain military personnel killed in combat or while on active duty in hostile or imminent danger locations on or after September 29, 2003.

New York State Blind Annuity
A New York State Blind Annuity (2008 rate is $1,128.72 annually) is available to visually impaired wartime veterans and certain unremarried spouses. For More Information, Call 1-888-838-7697 or 518-486-3602

New York State Gold Star Annuity
Gold Star Parent Annuity authorizes an annuity payment of up to $500 per Gold Star parent of a deceased veteran.

Visit the New York Division of Veterans Services website for contact information and benefits assistance.

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New York Employment Benefits

Disabled Veterans Civil Service Preference
Qualified handicapped disabled veterans eligible for appointment to non-competitive State employment positions under Sections 55-b and 55-c of the New York State Civil Service Law.

Civil Service Credit Preference
Ten-point additional credit preference toward original appointment for disabled wartime veterans; five-points for wartime service; and two and a half points for competitive promotional exams.  Job retention rights applicable to veterans and spouses of totally disabled veterans.

Visit the New York Division of Veterans Services website for contact information and benefits assistance.

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New York Education Benefits

Veterans Tuition Awards

Veterans Tuition Awards (VTA) are awards for full-time study and part-time study for eligible veterans matriculated at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.

NOTE: Students previously approved for this award must apply for payment each year. Those students attending a vocational school or who are attending an approved undergraduate or graduate program part-time may apply for payment for the current academic year by completing the supplement.

Award Amounts

  • For full-time study, a recipient shall receive an award of up to the full cost of undergraduate tuition for New York state residents at the State University of New York, or actual tuition charged, whichever is less. Full-time study is defined as twelve or more credits per semester (or the equivalent) at a degree-granting institution, or twenty-four or more hours per week in a vocational training program.
  • For part-time study, awards will be prorated by credit hour. Part-time study is defined as at least three but fewer than twelve credits per semester (or the equivalent) at a degree-granting institution, or six to twenty-three hours per week in a vocational training program.
Duration:
Full-time Study
  • Undergraduate Degree-Granting Programs - Awards are available for up to eight semesters (four years) of undergraduate study. Awards can be made available for up to semesters of undergraduate study for enrollment in an approved five-year program or for enrollment in an approved program of remedial study.
  • Graduate Degree-Granting Programs - Awards are available for up to six semesters (three years) of graduate study.
  • Vocational Training Programs - Awards are available for up to a maximum of four semesters (two years) of study in an approved vocational training program.

Part-time Study

  • Undergraduate Degree-Granting Programs - Awards are available for up to the equivalent of eight semesters (four years) of full-time undergraduate study in a four-year program. Awards can be made available for up to the equivalent of ten semesters (five years) of full-time study for enrollment in an approved five-year undergraduate program which normally requires five academic years of full-time study.
  • Graduate Degree-Granting Programs - Awards are available for up to the equivalent of six semesters (three years) of part-time graduate study.
  • Vocational Training Programs - Awards are available for up to a maximum of eight semesters (four years) of part-time study in an approved vocational training program.

Approved programs are defined as undergraduate degree, graduate degree, diploma, and certificate programs at degree-granting institutions, or noncredit vocational training programs of at least 320 clock hours specifically approved by the New York State pision of Veteran's Affairs' Bureau of Veterans Education.

Eligible Veterans

Eligible students are those who are New York State residents discharged under honorable conditions from the U.S. Armed forces and who are:

  • Vietnam Veterans who served in Indochina between February 28, 1961 and May 7, 1975.
  • Persian Gulf Veterans who served in the Persian Gulf on or after August 2, 1990.
  • Afghanistan Veterans who served in Afghanistan during hostilities on or after September 11, 2001.
  • Veterans of the armed forces of the United States who served in hostilities that occurred after February 28, 1961 as evidenced by receipt of an Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal or a Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal.

These students must also:

  • Establish eligibility by applying to HESC.
  • Be New York State residents.
  • Be US Citizens or eligible noncitizens.
  • Be matriculated full or part- time at an undergraduate or graduate degree-granting institution in New York State or in an approved vocational training program in New York State.
  • Have applied for the Tuition Assistance Program for full-time undergraduate or graduate study.

How to Establish Eligibility
Complete the New York State Veterans Tuition Award Supplement or contact HESC. Be sure to print the Web Supplement Confirmation, sign and return it along with the required documentation according to the instructions.

Questions regarding eligible service or how to document service should be directed to the HESC Scholarship Unit at 1-888-697-4372.

How to Apply for Payment
Once you have established your eligibility, you must apply for payment. While you need only establish your eligibility once, you must apply for payment each year.

Apply for payment as follows:

  • Undergraduate and Graduate Full-time Study - Apply for payment by doing one of the following:

1.        Apply online by completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) -- the form used by virtually all colleges, universities and vocational schools for awarding federal student aid and most state and college aid -- and then linking to the TAP on the Web application, or
2.        For veterans who do not anticipate filing a FAFSA, complete a Scholarship Grant Payment Application. For a copy of the application call HESC at 1-888-697-4372.

  • Undergraduate Part-time Study - Complete only the Veterans Tuition Award Supplement.
  • Graduate Part-time Study - Complete only the Veterans Tuition Award Supplement.
  • Vocational Training Program - Complete only the Veterans Tuition Award Supplement.

Visit the New York Division of Veterans Services website for contact information and application assistance.

New York State Regents Awards (for Children)
Regents Awards for Children of Deceased & Disabled Veterans provide up to $450 per year to students whose parent(s) served in the US Armed Forces during specified times of national emergency.

Military Service Recognition Scholarship
Available to certain dependents of military personnel killed, severely and permanently disabled or missing in combat or a combat zone of operation since August 2, 1990.

Operation Recognition - High School Diplomas
Operation Recognition allows certain veterans to earn high school diplomas if they left school without graduating.

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Other New York State Veteran Benefits

Hunting Licenses & Permits
Veterans with a 40-percent or greater disability rating are eligible for low-cost hunting and fishing licenses, and free use of state parks, historic sites and recreation sites.

Customized Military and Veteran License Plates
Specialty plates for veterans and military members. All vehicles that are registered in NYS as a passenger class vehicle or as a commercial class vehicle are eligible. Certain custom plates are available for Motorcycles also.

Visit the New York Division of Veterans Services website for contact information and benefits assistance.

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