Benefits in my Backyard: Virginia

Virginia is the only state in the Union with an official bat, the Virginia big-eared bat

Jonathan Kaupanger
April 20, 2018 - 12:05 pm



Before the USA, there was simply Virginia.  Back in 1584, everything north of Florida (owned by the Spanish) and south of Canada (French territory) that was colonized by Sir Walter Raleigh was called Virginia.  The Revolutionary War’s most famous private soldier, who was also a giant, called Virginia home. Today, about three-quarters of a million veterans call the Commonwealth of Virginia home. Virginia, as you may have heard, is for lovers... and license plates. At least personalized ones. One out of every 10 vanity plates can be found in Virginia.

The nickname for Virginia has at times been the Mother of Presidents. Probably because eight US Presidents and six first ladies were born in the state. It’s also the final resting place for seven (Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Tyler, Taft and Kennedy) US Presidents. 


  • Virginia will tax your military retirement pay.  For regular military pay, up to $15,000 of basic pay can be exempted from Virginia income tax. For every dollar over that, the subtraction is reduced by $1. For example, if you receive $16,000 you can deduct $14,000.  You’ll need to serve at least 90 days active duty per year but it can be inside or outside of Virginia.
  • Property tax exemption.A veteran with a 100 percent, VA rated service-connected disability are exempt from paying tax on their principal residence and up to one acre of land.The exemption may be passed to the surviving spouse.



  • For state employment, if the agency uses a scored test, veterans receive a credit of five percent to their score. For veterans with a service-connected disability from VA, they receive 10 percent.
  • State Approving Agency is where you can find GI Bill approved schools.
  • Virginia Transition Assistance Program focus on employment, education and entrepreneurship.
  • The Virginia Employment Commission has special Veterans Services Staff on hand at most office locations in the state.


  • Virginia Veteran and Family Support is operated statewide and provides outreach, connection and support to veterans and their families.
  • Veterans Services Foundation is an independent state agency that coordinates behavioral health, rehabilitative and support services through public and private partnerships.
  • Virginia Fair Housing Office
  • VHDA.  This VHDA grant pays for modifications to make living spaces more accessible for military veterans who sustained injury during service.  Affordable, accessible housing optinos that promote independence and dignity for people with disabilities.



  • Virginia has two long-term nursing care facilities in the state and will be opening another two late 2019. You’ll need an honorable discharge, be a Virginia resident at the time of admission or entry into active duty from Virginia. Here’s more info on the state Veterans Care Centers.

Cemetery and Burial

  • There are three veterans’ cemeteries in the state. All accommodate in-ground burial and cremation.
  • Eligibility Determination Form.  Pre-needs determination is intended to simplify and assist the veteran’s next-of-kin at the time of death. This does not reserve a plot or niche at the cemetery and there is no cost for this.

Links or Resources