Updated: May 16, 2021
North Carolina offers benefits to over 700,000 veterans.
Veteran Education Benefits
Scholarship for North Carolina Children of Wartime Veterans
Students who apply must be North Carolina residents under 26 and natural or adopted child dependents of qualified veterans. Deceased service members and disabled, combat, or POW/MIA veterans may qualify. The veterans must have served during a period of war, and the veteran must have been a resident of North Carolina when active service began.
This scholarship program offers financial assistance to attend North Carolina supported schools, but some approved private schools may also be eligible. The payments cover eight academic semesters over a maximum of eight years.
North Carolina Tuition Benefits for Non-Resident GI Bill Users
Qualifying spouses and children of actively serving members may qualify for North Carolina in-state tuition rates without meeting the 12-month residency requirement. The student must attend a state college using the GI Bill.
Veterans who do not qualify for in-state tuition because they do not meet the residency requirement pay in-state rates or are compensated for paying the higher non-resident tuition rate.
Veteran Employment Benefits
North Carolina Government Veteran Hiring Preference
North Carolina state, city, and local governments are some of the largest employers of veterans and their families in the state. Because of that, North Carolina state law states:
“It shall be the policy of the State of North Carolina that, in appreciation for their service to this State and this country during a period of war, and in recognition of the time and advantage lost toward the pursuit of a civilian career, veterans shall be granted preference in employment with every State department, agency, and institution. ” ~NCGS 126-80, Article 13
The hiring preference level varies depending on the job, Civil Service exam required, and some other factors. For details on exams and preference points, contact the Human Resources department or hiring division in the government agency that interests you.
North Carolina Fast Tracking of Professional Licensing for Veterans
Qualifying veterans and their spouses are eligible to receive credit for military experience towards state licensing. Career licensing fields range from commercial truck driving to molecular science. License Boards for several license occupations have been required to design a process for recognizing military training as a qualification for occupational licensing.
North Carolina Disabled Veteran Outreach
Workforce Centers run by the North Carolina Department of Commerce offer employment resources, resume help, and career counseling for veterans. The centers also provide assistance to disabled vets from Disabled Veteran Outreach specialists.
Veteran Housing Benefits
North Carolina Veterans’ Assisted Care Homes And Nursing Homes
The State of North Carolina operates four full-service assisted care and nursing homes for veterans.
● Fayetteville, North Carolina
● Salisbury, North Carolina
● Black Mountain, North Carolina
● Kinston, North Carolina
Admittance requires veterans to be honorably discharged, have a need for the facility with a physician's reference, and have been a resident of North Carolina for at least 24 months before applying.
Take a virtual tour of any of these homes at the NC4Vets.com official site.
N.C. Home Advantage Mortgage Program
While not expressly for veterans, this home buying program offers down payment assistance to all qualifying first-time home buyers. Veterans are encouraged to apply. The Home Advantage Program, the work of the North Carolina Housing Finance Agency, offers the program throughout the state through approximately 85 financial institutions.
This program features zero-interest down payment assistance loans with loan forgiveness of down payment assistance, starting as early as 11 years after the loan. Applicants can also apply for second mortgage loans for up to 5 percent of the original mortgage.
One of the incentives for veterans to use the Home Advantage program is that it can be combined with a tax-saving MCC or Mortgage Credit Certificate, which helps lower federal income taxes.
The program is based on the applicant’s income, but qualifying applicants can claim up to 50% of the interest for a tax credit of up to $2000 each year.
Housing Resources for the Homeless Veterans of North Carolina
North Carolina offers resources that help veterans avoid becoming homeless. The state urges veterans facing or experiencing homelessness to contact the National Call Center for Homeless Veterans at 1-877-4AID-VET.
The Department of Military and Veterans Affairs also has a list of immediate needs resources in North Carolina from various providers. These resources, often available through private or charitable organizations, include medical need and substance abuse programs, and resources specifically for women veterans.
Veteran Financial Benefits
Retirement Income Tax Breaks for Veterans
Service members with at least five years of qualifying service as of August 12, 1989, may be exempt from paying state income tax on their military retirement pay. To get the exemption, the retiree should claim a deduction on Form D-400 Schedule S, on line 10 under Part B – Deductions from Federal Adjusted Gross Income.
North Carolina Disabled Veteran Property Tax Exclusion
Honorably discharged North Carolina residents with qualifying VA-rated disabilities or service-connected medical issues may qualify for property tax breaks on their primary residences. Unmarried surviving spouses may also apply.
While there are no age or income restrictions, each applicant must submit proof of service, a VA disability letter, and proof of benefits received to apply for a property assessment reduction of $45,000.
Additional Veteran Benefits
Legal Assistance for Veterans
The Veterans Law Clinic at North Carolina Central University School of Law provides vets with legal advice. Supervised law students operated the clinic designed to help veterans file claims with the Veterans Administration and file appeals up to the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans’ Claims.
This legal help program is offered throughout the state on UNC Campuses. Claims assistance is available for many stages of the legal process, including judicial review. Not every case is eligible for help, but call 919-530-6605 to start the determination process.
North Carolina State Veteran Cemeteries
There are six state-run Veteran Cemeteries in North Carolina.
● Black Mountain, North Carolina
● Jacksonville, North Carolina
● Spring Lake, North Carolina
● Goldsboro, North Carolina
● Salisbury National Veterans Cemetery
The cemeteries offer burial benefits to qualifying veterans, their spouses, and sometimes military dependents. Residency, discharge, and other requirements vary depending on the facility. Check regulations for burial in national veterans cemeteries for the Salisbury National Cemetery.
Identification Cards, Driver Licenses, and License Plates for Veterans
North Carolina offers free or lower-cost special license plates for qualifying veterans. Disabled veterans’ plates are available without cost. Submit proof of qualification when applying
Military members who are legally North Carolina Residents but are serving out of state may renew a North Carolina drivers' license by mail.
State Recreational Licenses for Veterans
North Carolina does not require resident military members serving out-of-state to purchase hunting or fishing licenses if they come home on leave for 30 days or less. To hunt or fish during leave, the service member must carry a military ID and a document issued by their service unit that confirms that they are on authorized leave from a duty station outside of North Carolina.
Non-resident military members who are stationed in North Carolina are eligible for hunting and fishing licenses at discounted rates. There are also lifetime hunting and fishing licenses offered at a discount for veterans determined by the VA to be 50% disabled. To apply for lifetime licenses, the veteran should present proof of service and VA award letters.