Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs
Veterans of the United States armed forces may be eligible for a broad range of benefits and services provided by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). These benefits are codified in Title 38 of the United States Code. This booklet contains a brief overview of the most commonly sought information concerning Veterans benefits and services. For the most accurate information, Veterans and family members should visit the websites provided within this publication as regulations, payments, and eligibility requirements are subject to change. For additional information, please visit www.va.gov. To find the nearest VA facility, go to https://www.va.gov/landing2_locations.html
Eligibility for most VA benefits is based upon discharge from active military service under other than dishonorable conditions. Active service means full-time service, other than active duty for training, as a member of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, or as a commissioned officer of the Public Health Service, Environmental Science Services Administration or National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, or its predecessor, the Coast and Geodetic Survey.
Eligible Wartime Periods:
Certain VA Benefits Require Wartime Service. For information on eligible wartime periods please visit http://www.benefits.va.gov/pension/wartimeperiod.asp Dishonorable and bad conduct discharges issued by general courts-martial may bar VA benefits. Veterans in prison must contact VA to determine eligibility. VA benefits will not be provided to any Veteran or dependent wanted for an outstanding felony warrant.
In order to expedite benefits delivery, Veterans seeking a VA benefit for the first time must submit a copy of their service discharge form (DD-214, DD-215, or for World War II Veterans, a WD form), which documents service dates and type of discharge, or provides full name, military service number, and branch and dates of service. The Veteran's service discharge form should be kept in a safe location accessible to the Veteran and next of kin or designated representative. The following documents will be needed for claims processing related to a Veteran's death: Veteran's marriage certificate for claims of a surviving spouse or children; Veteran's death certificate if the Veteran did not die in a VA health care facility; children's birth certificates or adoption papers to determine children's benefits; or Veteran's birth certificate to determine parents' benefits. For information and updates on VA benefits and services, follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/VeteransBenefits and/or Twitter at http://twitter.com/VAVetBenefits
eBenefits is a joint VA/Department of Defense (DoD) Web portal that provides resources and self-service capabilities to service members, Veterans, and their families to apply, research, access, and manage their VA and military benefits and personal information through a secure Internet connection.
Through eBenefits Veterans can apply for benefits, view their disability compensation claim status, access official military personnel documents (e.g., DD Form 214, Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), transfer entitlement of Post-9/11 GI Bill to eligible dependents (service members only), obtain a VA-guaranteed home loan Certificate of Eligibility, and register for and update direct deposit information for certain benefits. New features are added regularly.
The portal is located at www.ebenefits.va.gov
Service members or Veterans must register for an eBenefits account at one of two levels: Basic or Premium. A Premium account allows the user to access personal data in VA and DoD systems, as well as apply for benefits online, check the status of claims, update address records, and more. The Basic account allows access to information entered into eBenefits by the service member or Veteran only. Basic accounts cannot access VA or DoD systems.
Help VA’s Secretary ensure integrity by reporting suspected fraud, waste or abuse in VA programs or operations.
Report Fraud to:
VA Inspector General Hotline
810 Vermont Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20420
VAOIG hotline 1-800-488-8244
Fax: (202) 495-5861