NEW MEXICO STATE VETERAN BENEFITS
We endeavor to keep this information current, but it is subject to change without notice.
NEW MEXICO VETERAN EDUCATION BENEFITS
Children of Deceased Veterans
Some dependent children aged 16 to 26 are eligible to receive an education from any state funded post-secondary school without paying tuition. To qualify, the child must have a veteran parent killed in the line of duty while in active service or who died later as a result of their injuries. In addition to full tuition, the qualifying child receives a $150 stipend each semester to offset the costs of fees and materials.
Vietnam Veteran Scholarship
If a veteran served in Vietnam, received the Vietnam Campaign or Service Medal, and has been a New Mexico legal resident for at least 10 years, he or she can tap the Vietnam Veteran Scholarship. This benefit pays for all tuition and books at any post-secondary school in the state that receives state funds.
Wartime Veteran Scholarship Fund
New Mexico also has a scholarship for certain veterans who exhaust their GI Bill before receiving their degrees. Eligible veterans must have served since 1990 under combat. If they have, this scholarship can cover tuition and books at any higher learning institution in the state that receives state funds.
NEW MEXICO VETERANS EMPLOYMENT BENEFITS
All veterans holding honorable discharges and those in the National Guard receive at least 5 preference points added to state hiring exam scores if they pass. Those with some level of service-connect disability receive a total of 10 extra points.
NEW MEXICO VETERAN FINANCIAL BENEFITS
The Land of Enchantment does not tax active duty military pay. In some situations, military retirement disability pay might not be taxed if Veterans qualify for the state’s low or middle income exemptions.
Veterans’ Property Tax Exemption
New Mexico resident veterans who served on active duty for at least 90 days in a row and have an honorable discharge can the taxable value of their home lowered by $4,000 for tax purposes. Surviving spouses who elect not to remarry retain this benefit.
Veterans with a 100% service-connected disability rating by the VA do not need to pay property taxes on their homes. If any veteran doesn’t own a home, or prefers, he or she can receive one-third off the price of registering a vehicle registration instead.
Excise Taxes on Vehicle Purchases
Certain veterans are exempt from paying excise taxes on new vehicle purchases. The veteran must have suffered the physical loss of a limb, or total loss of a limb’s use due to his or her military service in order to be eligible.
NEW MEXICO VETERAN RECREATION BENEFITS
Veterans’ Day Privileges
Every Veterans Day, all honorably discharged New Mexico resident veterans, those still on active duty, and their families can enter state museums and parks free of charge. Even camping fees get waived on Veterans’ Day. Participating museums include:
- The Museum of New Mexico
- The New Mexico Museum of Space History
- The New Mexico Museum of Natural History
State Park & Museum Admission for Disabled Veterans
Any disabled veteran rated at 50% service-connected doesn’t have to wait until Veterans Day to receive admission perks. These veterans receive an annual park day-use pass and three nights of personal camping at no charge. They also receive free admission to state monuments and museums.
Hunting and Fishing Licenses
New Mexico offers a lifetime small-game hunting & fishing license to resident veterans having 100 percent rating for their service-connected disabilities at no cost. A service-connected VA disability rating of any amount allows New Mexico residents to purchase discounted small game and fishing licenses for just $10.
All resident Active duty, National Guard or Reserve members can show residency and receive a temporary small game hunting permit or fishing license. Even active duty military stationed elsewhere can apply for a free temporary license when they spend their leave time in New Mexico for less than 30 days.
NEW MEXICO VETERANS HOME
New Mexico supports a veterans’ home in Truth or Consequences. Admission eligibility extends to honorably discharged veterans and their spouses, provided the veteran has at last 90 days of service. Gold star parents and some reserve serve members who meet legal residency requirements can also apply. Veterans themselves do not need to be New Mexico residents, but residents receive preference when a waiting list exists. Fees are set by the state.
Having any of these precludes a veteran’s admission into the New Mexico State Veterans’ Home:
- A less than honorable discharge
- Any conviction for subversive activity after September 1, 1959 unless pardoned by the President
- History of substance abuse, violence or sexual offenses
- Medical or mental needs exceeding the facility’s ability to provide adequate care
NEW MEXICO STATE VETERANS CEMETERY
New Mexico hosts two national veterans’ cemeteries in Santa Fe and in Fort Bayard and they currently operate one state veteran cemetery in Fort Stanton. Three more state veterans’ cemeteries are slated in Carlsbad, Gallup and Angel Fire. The Fort Stanton Veterans’ Cemetery opened in late 2017 near the existing Merchant Marine Military Cemetery.
Fort Stanton State Veterans Cemetery receives veterans with honorable discharges and their spouses.
You can find more information regarding these benefits and other programs at the New Mexico Department of Veterans Services website.