NEBRASKA STATE VETERAN BENEFITS
We endeavor to keep this information current, but it is subject to change without notice.
NEBRASKA VETERANS EDUCATION BENEFITS
All state and community colleges, including the University of Nebraska, can offer free tuition for eligible dependent children of veterans. The child must have a veteran parent who was killed in (or as a result of) active duty OR be permanently and totally disabled because of active duty.
Reservist Tuition Credit
Nebraska’s enlisted reserve unit members could be eligible for half off their tuition at state-funded community colleges or universities.
STATE EMPLOYMENT VETERANS PREFERENCE
Nebraska gives honorably discharged veterans a hiring preference for all state, county and municipal jobs. Veterans receive 5 percent points added to their employment testing score. Disabled Veterans receive 10. In addition, some spouses could also receive a hiring preference. Specifically, those of active duty members honorably discharged within 180 days and spouses of veterans who are 100 percent disabled may also be eligible.
NEBRASKA VETERANS FINANCIAL BENEFITS
Retired Military Pay
The Cornhusker State requires veterans to choose an exemption option for retirement pay within two years of their separation from the military. The election cannot be changed once made. Veterans can either have 40% of their retirement pay excluded from state taxation for 7 straight years starting with election year OR they can have 15% of their retirement pay excluded from taxation. This option begins when the veteran turns 67 and continues for the duration of pay. In either case, all military retirement income beyond the 40% or the 15% is fully taxable.
Former military individuals who do not immediately get retirement benefits, such as some National Guard and Reserve Service members, still need to choose their exemption option within two years of separation from the military or they will lose this exemption.
Nebraska Veterans’ Aid Fund
This state has an emergency aid fund meant to temporarily assist veterans and their families with money for basic necessities when an emergency disrupts their lives and other resources are not readily available. This financial aid is specifically for shelter, food, clothes, fuel and extenuating items such as funeral, medical or surgical expenses. Make application through the VSO of any recognized veterans’ organization in your county or through the County Service Officer.
Nebraska Homestead Exemption
Veterans who are 100% disabled with service-connected conditions may qualify for the homestead exemption to reduce their property taxes. In addition, their surviving spouses, if they remain unmarried, or the un-remarried surviving spouses of service members killed on duty may also be eligible. Income limits and property value limits apply.
NEBRASKA VETERAN RECREATION BENEFITS
Hunting & Fishing Licenses
- Lifetime hunting and fishing licenses can be obtained by Nebraska resident veterans who are at least 50% disabled
- Veterans who are at least age 64 can receive hunting & fishing licenses for five bucks
- Active duty personnel stationed in Nebraska for at least 30 days may pay resident rates for hunting & fishing licenses
Deployed Military Permit
Nebraska offers their resident military service members who have deployed out of the state within the last 12 months an Annual Small Game Hunt/Fish Permit with all state stamps on it at a special rate. Military service men and women are only eligible for this $5 permit once, regardless of deployments, so consider it a ‘thank you’ from the state.
NEBRASKA VETERANS HOMES
Nebraska operates four veterans’ homes that support eligible veterans and their eligible dependents with various therapies, memory care and hospice services. Eligible dependents may include spouses, surviving spouses who have not remarried, and Gold Star Parents.
Homes are in Scottsbluff, Grand Island, Bellevue and Norfolk and veteran eligibility criteria includes:
- Be a Nebraska resident
- Have an ‘other-than-dishonorable’ discharge
- Be disabled and needing care
Fees are based on ability to pay, given one’s financial health. (Residents currently pay $0 to over $4000 per month.) Interested veterans can apply directly to a specific home, apply through their VSO or use a recognized veteran’s service organization. There are eight of these.
NEBRASKA VETERANS CEMETERY
There is one state veterans’ cemetery in Alliance. They follow the same eligibility requirements that federal veterans’ cemeteries have. Eligible veterans and their eligible dependents can be buried for free.
You can find more information regarding these benefits and other programs at the Nebraska Department of Veterans Affairs website.