The following are the Minnesota veterans’ benefits programs for education, employment, housing and healthcare for 2018 and 2019.
Minnesota Veterans’ Benefits Programs
Education Benefits for Minnesota Veterans
In addition to federal programs such as the GI Bill, there are veterans’ benefits programs provided by the states.
Minnesota GI Bill
The Minnesota GI Bill is available to
- Minnesota veterans who served honorably in any branch of the armed forces at any time
- non-veterans who served honorably for a cumulative total of five years or more as a member of the MN National Guard or any other active or reserve component and had active service after September 11, 2001
- eligible spouses, surviving spouses, and children of permanently and totally disabled veterans who are eligible for the Federal GI Bill.
Full-time undergraduate or graduate students may be eligible to receive up to $1,000 per semester and part-time students can receive up to $500 per semester (up to $3,000 per academic year and $10,000 per lifetime).
OJT and Apprenticeship individuals are eligible for up to $2,000 per fiscal year for either program. Approved employers are eligible to receive $1,000 placement credit payable upon hiring a person under this program and another $1,000 after 12 consecutive months of employment. Recipients must be a Minnesota resident under the age of 62, and enrolled at a Minnesota institution.
Surviving Spouse & Dependent Education Benefit
The Surviving Spouse and Dependent Education benefit is for spouses and dependents, including adopted and step-children, whose veteran spouse and/or veteran parent died while on active duty, or as a result of a service-connected condition.
The veteran must have been a resident of Minnesota when they entered the military, or have been a resident of Minnesota for at least six months prior to passing away due to a service connected disability.
Applicants must be Minnesota residents and the spouse cannot be remarried.
There is no age limitation for eligible survivors. Surviving spouses and dependents can get a bachelor’s degree without paying tuition.
They also get $750 per year for fees, books and supplies, and/or room and board.
The benefit is available at MN state schools or private schools in the state.
Find colleges in Minnesota with our School Finder. Use the filters to sort schools by state.
Minnesota State Tuition Reimbursement (STR)
- You must be a member of the Minnesota National Guard.
- You are eligible for STR for classes that you attend AT AN ACCREDITED COLLEGE after completion of basic training.
- State policy requires Minnesota National Guard enlisted Soldiers to apply for Federal Tuition Assistance (FTA) in GoArmyEd.com BEFORE they are eligible to apply for State Tuition Reimbursement (STR). Officers are exempt due to the service obligation they incur with use of FTA.
- You must remain in the Minnesota National Guard during the entire term of courses.
- E1 to O5, including Warrant Officers are eligible for State Tuition Reimbursement. The lifetime maximum State Tuition Reimbursement benefit is 208 quarter or 144 Semester credits.
- State Tuition Reimbursement has been extended to service members who have satisfactorily completed their service contract in the Minnesota National Guard who served honorably in federal active service or federally funded state active service since September 11, 2001.
- Eligibility is extended for a period of two years, plus the amount of time equal to the duration of that person’s active service.
- State Tuition Reimbursement has been extended to service members who have been separated or discharged from that organization due to a service-connected injury, disease, or disability.
- Eligibility period is extended for eight years beyond the date of separation.
The Undergraduate reimbursement rate is up to 100% of the undergraduate rate of the University of Minnesota — Twin Cities Campus with a maximum yearly benefit of $17,000 per fiscal year (01 JUL through 30 JUN).
The Graduate reimbursement rate is up to 100% of the graduate rate of the University of Minnesota — Twin Cities Campus with a maximum yearly benefit of $36,000 per fiscal year (01 JUL through 30 JUN).
Housing Benefits for Minnesota Veterans
Property Tax Exemption
Disabled veterans may receive a property tax exemption of up to $300,000 on his or her primary residence if that veteran is 100% disabled as a result of their service. Veterans who have a disability rating of 70% or more may receive an exemption of up to $150,000. Surviving spouses of military personnel are eligible to receive a $300,000 exclusion.
SOAR stands for SSI/SSDI, Outreach, Access, and Recovery. The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs, the Minnesota Department of Human Services, and the United States Social Security Administration has partnered together to provide Minnesota’s homeless and at-risk veterans with expanded access to Social Security Income and Social Security Disability Insurance benefits.
Minnesota Homeless Veteran Registry
The MDVA has created the Minnesota Homeless Veteran Registry which connects veterans experiencing homelessness with housing and services in their community. It also helps programs serving veterans to coordinate their efforts. Anyone who has served in the US Armed Forces, Reserves, or National Guard can join the registry, regardless of the type of discharge they have. Veterans can join directly or people can be referred.
Health Care Benefits for Minnesota Veterans
Women Veterans Program
The mission of the Minnesota Women Veterans Program is to ensure that women veterans have equal access to all federal and state benefits and services that they are entitled to. They respond to gender specific needs of women veterans and help ensure that they are treated with dignity and respect. Their events are geared to improve the awareness of available benefits, services, and eligibility for women who have served in the US Armed Forces.
There are five Veterans Homes in Minnesota and you can find them located in Fergus Falls, Hastings, Luverne, Minneapolis, and Silver Bay. They strive to deliver a safe, dignified, and compassionate health care system as well as provide a nurturing and engaging home environment for Minnesota’s heroes. Each home provides person-centered care which is designed and delivered according to the individual needs of each resident. The facilities provide a combination of skilled nursing care, special care units for dementia and Alzheimer’s, domiciliary care, rehabilitation services, recreational therapy and work therapy programs.
In order to become a resident, one would need to be a honorably discharged veteran who entered service from Minnesota or who is a current resident of Minnesota, who has also served 181 consecutive days on active duty, unless they were discharged earlier because of disability incurred in the line of duty. The spouse of an eligible veteran who is at least 55 years of age and meets the residency requirements can also apply. Those who apply will need to be able to demonstrate a medical or clinical need for admission.
Employment Benefits for Minnesota Veterans
Veteran Status Verification Request for the Minnesota Small Business Procurement Program
The Minnesota Department of Administration operates a Targeted Group called the Economically Disadvantaged and Veteran Owned Small Business Procurement Program where Certified Veteran Owned Small Businesses may be eligible for a 6% preference in selling their products and services to the State. The principal place of business must be in Minnesota. To apply, a person must be a veteran, or a veteran with a service-connected disability as determined by the US Department of Veterans Affairs.
Minnesota Veterans Preference
The Minnesota Veterans Preference Act (VPA) gives veterans a limited preference over non-veterans in hiring and promotion for most Minnesota public employment positions. The preference might also apply to certain spouses of veterans. Veterans who apply for an open competitive position in a Minnesota county, city, school district or other political subdivision, who receive a passing rating, may choose to receive a credit of 10 extra points. Veterans who have a compensable service-connected disability, who receive a passing rating, may choose to receive a credit of 15 points. Spouses of deceased veterans or disabled veterans who can’t qualify because of their disability, may also choose to receive extra points. Service-connected disabled veterans with a 50% or greater rating may choose to receive a credit of five extra points.
When it comes to Minnesota State Agency positions, if minimum qualifications are met, disabled veterans will be ranked ahead of veterans, and veterans will be ranked ahead of non-veterans. Recently separated veterans who served on or after September 11, 2001, must be considered for the position and the top five recently separated veterans must be granted an interview.
MDVA Resources for Veterans Looking for Employment
The MDVA partners with DEED (Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development) to support veterans to find work in a new career. Veterans can visit their nearest Minnesota Workforce Center and contact a veteran employment representative, they can use the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities MyMilitary GPS Lifeplan to create a career goal, and post their resume on www.MinnesotaWorks.net.
Other Minnesota Veterans’ Benefits
Minnesota Commanders’ Task Force
The Minnesota Commanders’ Task Force is made up of non Congressionally Chartered Veterans Organizations to include the Disabled American Veterans, American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Military Order of the Purple Heart, Vietnam Veterans of America, Jewish War Veterans, Paralyzed Veterans of America, Marine Corps League and the American Veterans. The CTF meets regularly in order to discuss the many issues that are affecting Minnesota’s Veterans as well as their families.
Support Our Troops Licence Plates
The Minnesota Department of Veterans Affairs with the Minnesota Department of Military Affairs uses the annual minimum contribution of $30 from the Support Our Troops licence plate for cars and motorcycles. The money is for the betterment of military families, homeless, and underserved veterans in the state of Minnesota.
Minnesota Service Core
The Minnesota Service Core brings essential, community-based services directly to veterans and their families across Minnesota to no cost to them. They have partnered with Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota to provide comprehensive assistance through an existing network of resources. Their services include individual and family counseling, financial counseling, debt management, addiction counseling, disability services, and in-home counseling. The LSS case workers are in field offices in the Twin Cities metro area, Alexandria, Bemidji, Brainerd, Detroit Lakes, Duluth, Fergus Falls, Mankato, Moorhead, St. Cloud and Willmar.
Military Retirement Pay
Minnesota does not tax retirement pay.
For more information regarding Minnesota veterans’ benefits, please visit – Minnesota Department of Veterans Services
Related state military and veteran information:
PAY AND BENEFITS UPDATES FOR 2019: