Commonwealth of Puerto Rico Benefits

PUERTO RICO VETERAN BENEFITS

We endeavor to keep this information current, but it is subject to change without notice.

PUERTO RICO VETERAN EDUCATION BENEFITS

Free Tuition

Puerto Rican Veterans without G.I. Bill Benefits or who have exhausted their GI Bill benefits get free tuition at the University of Puerto Rico and its regional colleges.

Reduced Tuition for Dependents

Puerto Rico also help educate their Veterans’ dependents. Dependents of Veterans get their tuition at the University of Puerto Rico and its regional colleges at half off.

Veteran Scholarship(s) Regiment 65th Infantry

Children under the age of 26 (no age limit for children with documented disabilities) of honorably-discharged veterans may be able to tap this scholarship. Only one child in the family may participate and must not be receiving other VA educational benefits. Other rules apply. 

Puerto Rico National Guard (FIGNA) Tuition Assistance Fund

This program helps Guard members or their spouses and certain children with funding toward graduate degrees as well as undergraduate or vocational courses. Financial amounts vary depending on courses and degree. To participate in the assistance program, service members who are Puerto Rican citizens must active and pay $5.00 monthly. A service member can assign this benefit to his or her spouse or dependent (under 23 years of age). Children, whether natural, adopted or stepchildren use the benefit for a bachelor’s degree. Spouses can apply benefit toward a master’s degree.

PUERTO RICO VETERAN FINANCIAL BENEFITS

Income Tax

The commonwealth has tax laws which means not all residents pay all federal taxes, but they do pay into Social Security. All veterans in Puerto Rico get an additional personal exemption of $1,500. For those veterans filing jointly with a veteran spouse, the exemption doubles to $3,000. 

Puerto Rico Income Taxes

Puerto Rico taxes income that comes from outside of Puerto Rico, so it taxes military retirement based on where you served. For example, if after being in the military for 20 years, you ended up serving five years in Puerto Rico and 15 years elsewhere, only some of your retirement pay would be taxed by Puerto Rico…however, the remainder could be taxed by the U.S. federal government. 

Standard Veteran 10 Year Property Tax Exemption

When an eligible Veteran builds or purchases a property for his or her primary residence, the property is exempt from property taxes for 10 years and up to $5,000 for its appraised taxable value. Certain surviving spouses may be able to retain the exemption.

Injured Veterans Property Tax Exemption

Injured Veterans and their immediate families who find they must build, modify or purchase a remodeled home to accommodate the Veteran’s injuries and disabilities may be able to have that property exempted from taxation if it is their personal residence and if the property size and location meets certain criteria. 

Disabled Veteran Property Tax Exemption

Veterans receiving compensation from the VA for service-connected disability of at least 50 percent (50%) may receive a property tax exemption on a portion of their resident’s appraised value.  This statue exempts taxes on the first $50,000 of the appraised value disabled Veteran’s primary residence. Certain additional guidelines apply for both the property and the Veteran.

This benefit may extend to surviving spouses and some children.

Puerto Rico National Guard Retiree Annuity

If you are a retiree from the Puerto Rico National Guard and between the ages of 55 and 59, you could receive an annuity of $175 per month, provided you served 20 years or more with honorable and meritorious service.

Discounted Auto registration

Puerto Rico National Guard members get their auto registration fees at a discount.

Free Puerto Rico Veterans License Plates: 

Honorably-discharged veterans in Puerto Rico can get one free license plate and additional licenses plates for just $10 with an additional $2 bucks for Proof of Internal Revenue. The Veteran must keep the license plate when and if he or she sells the vehicle. It cannot be transferred. 

PUERTO RICO VETERANS EMPLOYMENT BENEFITS

Veterans Hiring Preferences

Federal law gives Veterans preference over non-Veterans when hiring into public jobs and during layoffs. Veterans may be entitled to 5 if they served during a war or during certain time periods the military has identified or have received a campaign medal.

They can receive 10 points added to their final examination score, provided they have attained a passing score, if they have a served at any time and have a present service-connected disability, receive compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension from the military or the Department of Veterans Affairs. A Veteran who received a Purple Heart qualifies. There are other nuances and specific rules to the program, and certain surviving spouses or spouses of 100% disabled veterans may qualify as well.

PUERTO RICO VETERANS HOME BENEFITS

The U.S. Territory off Puerto Rico does not have a veterans’ home.

PUERTO RICO VETERANS CEMETERY

Puerto Rico National Cemetery in Bayamon serves over 150,000 Veterans from Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, the Caribbean Islands and throughout Central and South America. They offer burial benefits for all Veterans and their eligible dependents according to federal guidelines. In general, eligible dependents include: Veteran’s spouse, minor children under 21 (or under 23 years of age if in school); unmarried, adult children who became incapable of self-support before age 21, due to a physical and/or mental disability; and certain Gold Star Parents, whether the veteran is biological or adopted.

 

 

You can find more information regarding these benefits and other programs at the Official Portal of the Government of Puerto Rico’s website.