Indiana State Veteran's Benefits

Indiana State Map

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

Indiana Veteran Housing Programs

The Veterans Home
The Indiana Veterans Home in West Lafayette provides nursing and domiciliary care for any honorably discharged Hoosier Veteran who has resided in Indiana for at least 12 months prior to admission. The Home is open to both veterans and their spouses.

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Indiana Financial Benefits

Income Tax
Active duty military members may exempt up to $5,000 of their military income from their gross taxable income.

Military retirees who are age 60 and over are entitled to deduct up to $5,000 of military or survivor benefits.

Property Tax Abatements
Property tax deductions are available to disabled Hoosier Veterans under the following conditions:

  1. A $24,960 dollar deduction is available to veterans who have at least a 10% disability, wartime service, and an honorable discharge.
  2. A $12,480 deduction is available to 100% disabled veterans or veterans over 62 years of age that are at least 10% disabled.

It is possible that a veteran could be eligible for one or both the deductions 

Note: This deduction is not available if the assessed value of the real property owned by the veteran is in excess of $143,160.

If an otherwise eligible veteran owns no real property, then a deduction may be made on the excise tax for a vehicle for up to $70.

Military Family Relief Fund
The emergency grants may be used by the families of veterans who received honorable discharges for needs such as food, housing, utilities, medical services, transportation and other essential family support expenses which have become difficult to afford. Grants up to $2,500 may be awarded.

Temporary Assistance For needy Families (TANF)
The TANF program offered through IDVA is available to assist military service members and their immediate families to proactively become self sustaining and encourage strong family bonds.

The TANF program objectives are to:

  • Provide assistance for childcare so that low-income families may look for employment, be able to maintain a job or attend classes.
  • Help parents to become self-sustaining by promoting life enrichment training, career preparation and advancement, in addition to sustaining healthy martial relations.
  • Educate individuals in family planning and parenting with the goal to reduce unplanned pregnancies before marriage and to provide valuable parenting skills.
  • Encourage and maintain two-parent families through premarital counseling and marriage retreats.

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Indiana Employment Benefits

State Employment
Indiana offers Veterans' preference in State Government employment for Veterans, their surviving Spouses and the Spouses of disabled Veterans. Employment preferences, where numerically based examinations are used as a device for selections, consists of adding ten points to the score of Veterans, disabled Veterans, Spouses of disabled or missing Veterans, and Widow(er)s of Veterans who lost their life during a period of war. 

Military CDL Skills Waiver Program
The BMV may waive the required drive skills test for select Veterans of the U.S. Armed Forces with specific drive training and were truck drivers during their military service when they apply for an Indiana Commercial Driver's License (CDL).

Peddlers, Vendors, or Hawkers License
State law provides that any wartime veteran who has an honorable discharge shall be granted these licenses by all cities and counties free of charge. See your county auditor.

Indiana Education Benefits

Free Tuition Program
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 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

The benefit includes free tuition and fees for 124 credit hours and is good at:

  • Ball State University
  • Indiana State University
  • IU Bloomington
  • IU East
  • IU Kokomo
  • IU Northwest
  • IU South Bend
  • IU Southeast
  • IUPU Ft. Wayne
  • IUPU Indianapolis
  • IUPU Columbus
  • IVY Tech
  • Purdue University Calumet
  • Purdue University North Central
  • Purdue University West Lafayette
  • University of Southern Indiana
  • Vincennes University
  • WGU Indiana

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Indiana Veterans Recreation Benefits

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 Licenses For Active Duty Residents
Residents of Indiana engaged in full-time military service and who are carrying leave orders and a valid Indiana driver's license or voter registration card are exempt from purchasing a hunting license. Non-resident military personnel on active duty and stationed within Indiana qualify for a resident license.

Fishing Licenses For Active Duty Residents
Residents of Indiana who are engaged in full-time military service may fish without a license while on approved military leave. However, the angler must carry leave orders and a valid Indiana driver's license or voter registration card. Non-resident military personnel stationed within Indiana qualify for a resident license.

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Other Indiana State Veteran Benefits

Disabled Veteran Plates
Disabled Veteran plates are the same as handicap plates in the State of Indiana. These are strictly limited to those individuals who have a serious mobility impairment due to a service-connected disability. Applications may be obtained from either the BMV or the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs. The Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs must verify the veteran's eligibility.

Indiana Veterans Memorial Cemetery
The Indiana Veterans Memorial Cemetery opened for internments on December 1, 1999. The Cemetery is located adjacent to the Madison State Hospital and Clifty Falls State Park in Madison, Indiana. Any Hoosier veteran eligible to be buried in a national cemetery will be eligible for burial in the Cemetery. The spouse of an eligible veteran will also be eligible to be buried there. For an application for burial contact the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs.

Burial Allowances
Each county auditor is authorized to pay up to an amount not to exceed $100 for the burial of a veteran or the veteran's spouse, and to pay up to $100 for the setting of a federal headstone. Veterans must have received an honorable discharge, and an application must be filed with the county auditor in the county of residence.

Visit the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs website for more information on any of these programs.

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Veteran Benefits