VA Benefits

Supporting war veterans, as well as honoring them, is governmental policy among many nations around the world. In the U.S., which has been embroiled in wars for more than a decade, these recent years have seen disability rates of 25% among the 2.5 million servicemen and servicewomen who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. In response, the commitment to veterans' disability benefits has quadrupled over that period has burgeoned from $15 billion in 2000 to a projected total of $57 billion for 2013, in part because of improved post-physical trauma survival rates and because of the development of sophisticated mental health programs and services for veterans.

U.S. Veterans Administration benefits are, however, broader than disability support. The kinds of benefits provided by the post-WW II "G.I. Bill", which included mortgage, educational, unemployment and other benefits, have evolved over the decades, and now comprise a core of essential services for those who have served in the Armed Forces of the United States.

For details concerning VA programs' and services' nature, scope and eligibility requirements, visit the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs online. Comparable information about veterans' benefits in other nations is widely available at their corresponding governmental websites.
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In the U.S., VA benefits refer to the financial, medical, educational and other forms of assistance provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to veterans and their dependents. These benefits include the following, presented with the germane VA objectives:

* Disability benefits - These can be a monthly benefit paid to veterans in recognition of the effects of incapacitating conditions that were incurred or aggravated during active military service, or a disability pension paid to veterans who are permanently or totally disabled, or aged 65 and older.

* Education and training - VA has education programs for veterans, service members, reservists and certain family members of veterans to supplement opportunities that they might have missed because of military service.

* Vocational rehabilitation and employment - VA has a wide range of vocational and employment services for veterans, active-duty service members and eligible dependents, so as to help them choose a career path and assist them in achieving their employment goals.

* Loan guarantee - This is to help eligible veterans, active duty personnel, spouses, and members of the Reserves and National Guard to purchase, retain, and adapt homes in recognition of their military service.

* Life insurance - This is to provide service members and their families with universally available life insurance, as well as traumatic injury protection insurance for service members.
Dependents and survivors' benefits

* Medical treatment - Individuals can check directly with the VA regarding their eligibility for these benefits. As for employers of veterans, they can also qualify for benefits and incentives, such as federal tax credits or tax deductions, through the vocational rehabilitation and employment programs and services.

Veterans in many other countries are eligible for counterpart benefits and can find detailed information about these on government websites. Here is a partial list, which is both useful and illustrative of the range and variety of services available to veterans around the English-speaking world:

The U.K.: http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Pensionsandretirementplanning/Benefits/BenefitsInRetirement/DG_10027105

Canada: http://www.veterans.gc.ca/eng/

Australia: http://australia.gov.au/service/veterans-benefits-and-services

New Zealand: http://www.workandincome.govt.nz/individuals/forms-and-brochures/war-veterans-entitlements.html
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