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Veterans Crisis Line Badge

Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs

 

Introduction

Introduction

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 the most commonly requested VA benefits and services.

This booklet is a brief overview of the commonly sought information concerning Veterans Benefits. 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 www.va.gov/directory/guide/division.asp?dnum=1&isFlash=0or call 1-800-827-1000.

General Eligibility:

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. 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.

Important Documents:

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 Form214, DD Form 215, or for World War II Veterans, a WD form).

eBenefits

Through eBenefits Veterans can:

Apply for benefits, view their dis-ability 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 benefits to eligible dependents (Service members only), obtain a VA-guaranteed home loan Certificate of Eligibility, register for and update direct deposit information for certain benefits, and search for employment through the Veterans Employment Center (VEC). New features are added regularly.

Accessing eBenefits:

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 Department of Defense (DoD) systems, as well as apply for benefits online, check the status of claims, and more. The basic account limits the self-service features that can be accessed.

To register for an account, Veterans must be listed in the Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (DEERS) and obtain a DoD Self Service (DS) Logon.

Service members can access eBenefits with a DS Logon or common access card (CAC). They can choose from two levels of registration: DS Logon level 1 (basic) and DS Logon level 2 (Premium). A DS Logon is an identity (user name and password) that is used by various DoD and VA Websites, including eBenefits. Those registered in DEERS are eligible for a DS Logon. A DS Logon is valid for the rest of the Service member’s life.

Identity verification: Many people will be able to verify their identity online by answering a few security questions. A few may need to visit a VA regional office or TRICARE Service Center to have their identities verified. Service members may verify their identity online by using their CAC. Military retirees may verify their identity online using their Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) logon. Veterans in receipt of VA benefits via direct deposit may have their identity verified by calling 1-800-827-1000 and selecting option 7.