Veterans Affairs FAQsVeterans Affairs FAQs

Frequent questions for Veterans Affairs.


Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get an ID card stating that I am a Veteran?
A VA Health Benefits ID card can be obtained through enrollment in the VA Healthcare System. If you are a 100% Permanent and Total service connected Veteran or are retired from the military you will be able to get a military ID card issued from a local military base.

The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) announced on September 7, 2012, the availability of a “VETERAN” designation on driver licenses, identification cards and beginner permits for individuals who served honorably in the United States Armed Forces. To apply, Veterans must present their Form DD214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), which indicates an honorable discharge. No other proof of service will be accepted. Military dependents, spouses, or civilian employees on military bases are not eligible. The cost to add VETERAN designation to a driver license, identification card or beginner permit is $1.00.

Who qualifies as a Veteran?
A person who served in the active military of the armed forces of the United States and who was released or discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
What is a DD214?
A military separation or discharge paper issued to Veterans after 1949.
How can I get a copy of my DD214 (military discharge papers)?
Our office can assist you in obtaining a copy of your DD214 or you can request a copy online from the National Personnel Records Center at www.archives.gov/index.html.
How do I enroll in the VA healthcare system?
To apply, complete VA Form 10-10EZ, Application for Health Benefits, which may be obtained from any VA health care facility by calling 1-877-222-VETS (8387) or regional benefits office, by calling 1-800-827-1000, or on line at www.1010ez.med.va.gov/sec/vha/1010ez . Our office will be glad to assist you in completing this form.
Do I need an appointment?
Appointments are strongly encouraged. This is so the counselors can allot the appropriate time to help you with your issue.
How long will it take to process my claim?
The average processing time takes from 9 to 12 months.
How do I get a letter showing what benefit I receive from the VA?
You will need to call the VARO at 1-800-827-1000 and ask for this or enroll in ebenefits at www.ebenefits.va.gov.
Do I qualify for property tax exemption?
Only Veterans that are rated as 100% Permanent and Total are eligible for this benefit.
What are the qualifications for pension benefits?
Generally, you may be eligible if: You were discharged from service under conditions other than dishonorable, and you served at least 90 days of active military service and at least one day was during a war time period. If you entered active duty after September 7, 1980, generally you must have served at least 24 months or the full period for which called or ordered to active duty and at least one day was during a war time period. (There are exceptions to this rule), if your income for VA purposes is below the maximum annual pension rate. The yearly maximum annual pension rate is set by Congress, AND you are age 65 or older, OR, you are permanently and totally disabled, not due to your own willful misconduct, OR, you are a patient in a nursing home, OR, you are receiving Social Security disability benefits.
What are the qualifications for aid & attendance benefits?
An individual may be eligible for A&A when:

1. The individual requires the aid of another person in order to perform his or her activities of daily living, such as bathing, feeding, dressing, attending to the wants of nature, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protecting himself/herself from the hazards of his/her daily environment, OR,

2. The individual is bedridden, in that his/her disability or disabilities requires that he/she remain in bed apart from any prescribed course of convalescence or treatment, OR,

3. The individual is a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity, OR,

4. The individual has corrected visual acuity of 5/200 or less, in both eyes, or concentric contraction of the visual field to 5 degrees or less.

Where can I get my discharge certified?
You can stop by our office and we can certify the discharge for you.
Do I need Medicare benefits if I have VA medical?
The VA does not recommend that Veterans cancel or decline coverage in Medicare (or other health care or insurance programs) solely because they are enrolled in VA health care. Unlike Medicare, which offers the same benefits for all enrollees, VA assigns enrollees to priority levels based on a variety of eligibility factors, such as service-connection and income. There is no guarantee that in subsequent years Congress will appropriate sufficient medical care funds for VA to provide care for all enrollment Priority groups. This could leave Veterans, especially those enrolled in one of the lower priority groups, with no access to VA health care coverage. For this reason, having a secondary source of coverage may be in a Veteran’s best interest. Also, Veterans could be subject to a penalty for enrolling “late” for Medicare Part B, even if they are enrolled in VA health care. In addition, “late” enrollment in Medicare may only be allowed at a certain time, like the beginning or end of the year. Individuals, who choose not to enroll when they are first eligible, may be left without access to health care until they can enroll in Medicare.
Can I receive Aid and Attendance benefits it I live at home?
Yes, but only if you are paying private caregivers or an outside company to help you with your activities of daily living.
What VA benefits are my spouse entitled to once I pass away?
Spousal benefits are not automatic at the time of a Veteran’s death. It is possible that the surviving spouse would be eligible for either DIC or pension benefits depending on the circumstances. Our office would be glad to go over these.
What are the Qualifying Wartime Service dates?
Under the law, VA recognizes these war periods:

Mexican Border Period: May 9, 1916 through April 5, 1917, for Veterans who served in Mexico, on its borders or in adjacent water.

World War I: April 6, 1917 through November 11, 1918

World War II: December 7, 1941 through December 31, 1946

Korean War: June 27, 1950 through January 31, 1955

Vietnam War: August 5, 1964 through May 7, 1975

Gulf War: August 2, 1990 through a date to be set by law or Presidential Proclamation.

I served in the National Guard, am I eligible for VA benefits or medical benefits?
Reservists who serve on active duty establish Veteran status and may be eligible for the full-range of VA benefits, depending on the length of active military service and a discharge or release from active duty under conditions other than dishonorable. In addition, reservists not activated may qualify for some VA benefits.

National Guard members can establish eligibility for VA benefits if activated for federal service during a period of war or domestic emergency. Activation for other than federal service does not qualify guard members for all VA benefits. Claims for VA benefits based on federal service filed by members of the National Guard should include a copy of the military orders, presidential proclamation or executive order that clearly demonstrates the federal nature of the service.

I’m a Veteran, are there any benefits for my child to attend school?
SC provides for free tuition to the children of certain war Veterans attending South Carolina state supported colleges and universities as well as state supported post high school technical education institutions. Certain residency requirements apply. For questions or to apply contact (803) 647-2434 or for the form visit www.govoepp.state.sc.us/va/ftapp.pdf
How can I transfer education benefits to a family member?
The Post-9/11 GI Bill allows uniformed service members (officer or enlisted, active duty or Selected Reserve), on or after August 1, 2009, to transfer unused education benefits to immediate family members (spouse and children). The service member must have at least six years of service, and commit to an additional four years of service in order to transfer benefits to a spouse or child. Because of the potential impact of this benefit on recruiting and retention, transferability policy is determined by the Department of Defense (DoD) and the military services. For information on policy and rules for transferability of Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits, visit the DoD GI Bill website at www.defenselink.mil/home/features/2009/0409_gibill/
If I get VA medical benefits, am I also eligible for dental benefits?
Yes, but only if you fall in one of the following five categories:

1. Rated at 100% Permanent and Total

2. Are service connected for a dental condition

3. Enrolled in Vocational Rehabilitation

4. Medal of Honor recipient

5. Former prisoner of war

What is net worth?
Net worth means the net value of the assets of the Veteran and his or her dependents. It includes such assets as bank accounts, stocks, bonds, mutual funds, some annuities and trust funds and any property other than the Veteran's residence and a reasonable lot area. There is no set limit on how much net worth a Veteran and his or her dependents can have, but net worth cannot be excessive. The decision as to whether a Veteran's net worth is excessive depends on the facts of each individual case.
How do I request replacement awards and medals?
The Veteran or next of kin can request replacement awards or medals. You can do so by visiting the National Personnel Records Center atwww.archives.gov/veterans/replace-medals. The request needs to be mailed to the correct branch of service. Awards and medals are usually replaced one time free of charge.

VA Contact Info

Department Head
Ronald Elvis Jr.
Contact
Phone: (843) 915-5480
Fax: (843) 915-6480
Mailing Address
P.O. Box 1236
Conway, SC 29528
Physical Address
2830 Oak Street
Conway, SC 29526
Office Hours
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday through Thursday
*Appointments Required*
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM on Friday

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