Find Louisiana state and local veteran’s benefits which include education, employment, healthcare, tax breaks/exemptions, recreation and much more below. There are over 275,000 veterans residing in the Bayou state according to the VA.
Louisiana State Veteran Education Benefits
Louisiana In-State Tuition Program
In-State tuition is available for veterans and active-duty military attending state-supported colleges or universities. Learn more or apply at the nearest Veterans Parish Service Office.
Louisiana National Guard State Tuition Exemption
This exemption provides free tuition for Guard members who meet the following requirements:
- Drilling member of the Louisiana National Guard in good standing
- A resident of Louisiana
- Working toward an Associate’s, Bachelor’s, or Master’s degree
- Must remain in good academic standing
- Must pay all fees applied to bill as exemption covers tuition only
Learn how to apply or get more information at the nearest Veterans Parish Service Office.
State Dependent Tuition Exemption (Title 29)
An education and training assistance program for qualifying dependents of veterans with VA-rated disabilities at 90% or higher as a result of military service. It is also open to qualifying dependents of veterans who died on duty or as a result of service-related issues during a wartime period.
Under Title 29, qualifying students are exempt from paying tuition and school fees. Apply via a local Veterans Parish Service Office. Those approved for Title 29 receive a Fee Exemption Certificate from the Louisiana Department of Veteran Affairs.
Louisiana Professional Certifications and Licenses for Veterans
Act 276: The Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs official site states that Act 276 allows those with military training and experience to be offered “civilian professional licensure and/or certification when the Servicemember has been awarded a military occupational specialty and performance in that specialty that is at a level equal to or exceeding the requirements for said license and/or certification.”
Act 276 also allows colleges to, “award educational credits to a student who is also a veteran for courses that are part of the student’s military training or service and that meet the standards of the American Council on Education” for offering college credit to qualifying veterans.
Louisiana State Veteran Employment Benefits
Louisiana State and Federal Civil Service Hiring Preference for Veterans
Louisiana state and city civil service departments have a veteran hiring preference program including up to ten points of hiring preference “in original appointment” to honorably discharged veterans who serve “under certain circumstances”.
This is in addition to federal laws requiring five to ten point hiring preference points for federal positions. Certain qualifying disabled veterans may be hired directly under state law.
Louisiana State Tax Break for Employers Hiring Disabled Veterans
This tax incentive allows those who hire qualifying disabled employees, including veterans who are mentioned specifically in the legislation, to claim a tax break equivalent to half the gross wages paid to the employee for the first four continuous months of employment plus 30% of wages for each subsequent month.
According to Louisiana law, “A taxpayer shall be eligible to claim the deduction provided for in this Section after employing a qualified individual with a disability for four continuous months for no less than an average of twenty hours a week” at rates comparable to other employees of the taxpayer performing similar work.
Louisiana State Veteran Housing Benefits
- Market Rate GNMA Program: This program offers qualified veterans 30-year, fixed-rate FHA, VA or USDA Rural Development mortgages at favorable interest rates.
- Mortgage Bond Revenue Home Program: Bond programs are often provided for need-based loans for borrowers meeting income caps and purchase price limits. Veterans are not specifically targeted with this program but those who meet income and purchase requirements are welcome to apply.
- Mortgage Revenue Bond Assisted Program: This is another LHC program offering assistance for prospective homebuyers (veterans or not) who need help with down payment and closing expenses.
Louisiana State Veteran Homes
The Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs runs five veterans’ homes in the state:
- Bossier City
Long-term and short-term care are available at these homes. They are open to those who have served 90 days or more of active duty and have a discharge under honorable conditions.
State residency is required, except for those who have a referral from an in-state VA medical center or by a Louisiana Department of Veterans’ Affairs Veterans’ Assistance Counselor.
A medical examination is required prior to admission to screen for communicable diseases and certain mental health issues. Care at the five facilities may include:
- Rehabilitative therapies
- Alzheimer’s and intermediate care
- Skilled nursing
- Mental health services
- Centralized pharmacy services
Louisiana State Veteran Financial Benefits
Louisiana Military Family Assistance Fund (MFA)
Created in 2005, the MFA fund is intended for veterans, Louisiana National Guard members, and Louisiana Military Reserves and their families to offset financial hardships associated with being placed on active duty status.
Money from this fund may be used to pay for housing, utilities, medical services, and “other essential expenses that may have created an undue financial hardship” up to $10,000 in a 12-month period.
Qualifications for this program include:
- Louisiana state resident
- Current member of the Louisiana National Guard or Reserves OR
- Veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, Louisiana National Guard or Reserves) with a discharge of “Honorable” or “Under Honorable Conditions”
- Veterans must have completed 24 months of continuous active-duty, other than active duty for training; Completed at least 90 days of active duty and has been discharged under the specific authority of 10 U.S.C. 1171 or 1173, or has been determined to have a service connected disability;
- Received a discharge with less than 90 days of service for a service connected disability
This is a “payer of last resort” program, meaning that the applicant must exhaust other avenues of aid or assistance before applying.
Louisiana Homestead Tax Exemption
The Louisiana Homestead Tax exemption equals $7,500 of a homestead’s assessed value ($75,000 of market value) and can be claimed for up to 160 acres as long as the home is an owner-occupied property.
According to the Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs, “in parishes in which the voters have elected to adopt the policy, the amount of the homestead exemption is doubled to $15,000 of a home’s assessed value ($150,000 of market value) for property owned by a military veteran having a service-related disability rating of 100% as determined by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.”
This exemption is also available for property owned and occupied by the surviving spouse of a qualifying service member.
Louisiana State Tax Exemptions for Veterans
Military retirement income is exempt from Louisiana state taxes. Any military pay exempt from federal tax including combat pay or hazardous duty pay is also exempt from Louisiana state income taxes.
Louisiana State Additional Veteran Benefits
Louisiana Veteran Cemeteries
The State of Louisiana operates four veterans’ cemeteries in:
These facilities are open to qualifying veterans, military spouses, and dependent children. Veterans may be interred without cost, and there is a nominal fee for dependents and spouses. Services include:
- Grave sites for caskets
- Grave sites for cremated remains
- Headstone/grave marker
- Opening and closing of the grave
- Perpetual care
Pre-register by downloading and submitting a printable application.
Recreational Benefits for Veterans: Reduced Hunting and Fishing Licenses
The State of Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries offers greatly reduced license fees for qualifying veterans and currently serving military members whether in-state or out-of state. This program also includes special fee-free licenses, excluding Federal Duck Stamps, for qualifying disabled veterans with VA-rated disabilities of 50% or greater.
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