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Are National Guard Members Considered Veterans

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What Is The Difference Between Guard And Reserve Service

VA Benefits: National Guard/Reserve Members (60-Second PSA)

Each branch of the military has a reserve component whose main purpose is to have trained units available for active duty as needed.

The National Guard includes the Army National Guard and Air National Guard in each state, U.S. territory and the District of Columbia. National Guard units typically are controlled by the state, but they can be activated for federal duty and deployed.

Both Reserve and Guard units train, as known as drill, about one weekend a month plus two weeks a year for “annual training.” Guard and Reserve members must serve a certain number of hours each year to make a “good year” to qualify for benefits and retirement.

National Guard Are National Guard Veterans

The principal difference between the National Guard and the Reserves is that the federal government is in charge of the Reserves, while the National Guard units predominately belong to individual states.

To those who ask why National Guard members are not considered veterans, they can be! Currently, National Guard is considered veterans if they served over 20 years even if they dont get deployed. Prior to 2016, they were considered veterans only if they served 180 days or more in a federal status, such as serving on active status.

There are two National Guard types: the Army National Guard and the Air National Guard. National Guard members attend basic training and military job school full time under ADT , similar to the Reserves.

They resume daily civilian life but train one weekend per month in addition to 15 full-time training days per year. This type of IDT/ADT time doesnt count toward veterans benefits.

State governors can call National Guard members to active duty if a state emergency arises. Such emergencies include relief or protection of property and people outside the authority of local law enforcement. This form of state duty is known officially as Title 38 Call-up and doesnt count toward veterans benefits either.

In a given month, an estimated 40,000 members of the Air and Army National Guard are performing federal duty overseas.

Active Guard/Reserves

For veterans benefit service requirements, AGR duty is similar to full-time active-duty service.

Who Qualifies For Being A Veteran

Title 38 of the Code of Federal Regulations defines a veteran as a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. This definition explains that any individual that completed a service for any branch of armed forces

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Do National Guard Members Get Veterans Preference

The law specifically states that veterans must have served on active duty to qualify for preference. … However, a Guard member who is activated and who serves continuously for two years, or the entire time for which he was called to active duty, can qualify for preference if he meets all other requirements.

A Veteran Is A Former Member Of The Armed Forces Of The United States Who Served On Active Duty And Was Discharged Under Conditions Which Were Other Than Dishonorable

WV National Guard members reunite with friends, family after year ...

There is no minimum number of days a student must have served on active duty to be considered a veteran. However, periods of active duty for training, pursuant to an enlistment in the National Guard or Reserves, do not qualify a student as a veteran. Thus former or current members of the National Guard or Reserves are not considered to be veterans unless they had prior or subsequent service with an active component of the Armed Forces. Since the DD Form 214 is issued to those leaving the active military as well as to members of the National Guard and Reserves completing their initial active duty for training, possession of this document does not necessarily mean the student is a veteran.

Persons who attended military academies are now considered veterans for financial aid purposes.

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Character Of The Discharge

The requirement that a valid discharge from service must be other than dishonorable in order to qualify for VA benefits seems rather simple on the surface. In reality, there are a variety of different discharges that are characterized between an honorable discharge and a discharge that uses the word dishonorable. In some cases, VA will consider these other than honorable discharges as dishonorable even though the word dishonorable is not used. In other cases these discharges are considered as other than dishonorable.

As a general rule, discharges that are classified as general discharges are considered as other than dishonorable. But a general discharge is still a blight on a serviceman’s application for civilian work. General discharges that reflect negative aspects of military conduct will jeopardize a veteran’s ability to use education benefits or to be able to reenlist after discharge. Education benefits specifically require an honorable discharge and any other discharge will disqualify for those benefits.

A discharge carrying the words “dishonorable” is very rare as such a discharge can only be handed down to an enlisted member by a general court-martial.

The following discharges are specifically mentioned in the regulations as barring the payment of benefits and would thus be classified as dishonorable.

  • As a conscientious objector who refused to perform military duty, wear the uniform, or comply with lawful order of competent military authorities.
  • As a deserter.
  • Who Qualifies As A Veteran For Compensation Pension And Benefits

    Most people understand that those who served in the military are veterans.

    But what they actually need to know is what type of veteran status qualifies them for various benefits, such as Tricare or pension benefits.


    • Definition of the Term Veteran For purposes of compensation, Dependency and Indemnity Compensation , and death pension, see38 CFR 3.1, and Paulson v. Brown, 7 Vet.App. 466, 470 , and
    • Groups approved for Veteran status under Public Law Please see 95-202 and 106-259, at the following link, M21-1, Part III, Subpart iii, 2.K.3.
    • Veterans Pensions We also have an article explaining who qualifies for a pension.

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    Who Qualifies As A Veteran

    During your time in the military, you were classified as either a full time or part time service member, depending on your job description.

    Generally, active duty service members are considered as full timers, while members of the Reserves and the National Guard are considered as part timers.

    This is an important factor in determining your veteran status, and consequently, how much benefits you are eligible to receive.

    Are You A Veteran If You Only Did Basic Training

    New policy allows more Guard members, reservists to be buried in Veterans Cemetery

    For individuals who are currently in the military, active duty excludes training. If a member of the armed forces was discharged during basic training for medical reasons, they are still considered a veteran for Federal student aid purposes so long as they served at least one day before being discharged.

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    In The Line Of Duty And Willful Misconduct

    In order to be eligible for a claim related to disability or death, the claimant had to have been in the line of duty when that injury or illness or death or occurred. It is important to note that a claimant may make a valid claim when he or she was in the line of duty even though a different injury or illness may have occurred when the veteran was not in the line of duty. Only a claim related to failure to be in the line of duty comes under scrutiny for being valid or not.

    VA uses a circular definition to define in line of duty and it is best understood what line of duty is not. Not being in the line of duty includes actions such as willful misconduct, desertion, absent without leave, illness or injury in service caused by drug or alcohol or tobacco use prior to 1990 as well as injury or illness incurred while confined under a sentence of court-martial or being confined in a civilian jail for a committed felony while in the service. Absent without leave also requires careful scrutiny under a claim as the motives relating to AWOL must be examined and determination could be made that being absent without leave would still result in a valid claim. Exceptions usually apply only to absent without leave of less than 180 days. Specific rules in 38 CFR 3.301 cover the various contingencies associated with in line of duty.

    A discharge that includes willful misconduct will bar a veteran from receiving Pension benefits and vocational rehabilitation benefits.

    Veteran Status For Merchant Mariners

    Merchant mariners are civilians who engage in certain maritime activities, such as the transportation of military equipment by sea, in support of the armed forces. In general, merchant mariners are not considered veterans for the purposes of any VA benefits. However, pursuant to regulations promulgated in accordance with P.L. 95-202, the following groups of merchant mariners are considered veterans for purposes of eligibility for all programs administered by the VA:

    • United States Merchant Seamen who served on blockships in support of Operation Mulberry in World War II 42 and
    • American Merchant Marine personnel who served in oceangoing service during the period of armed conflict between December 7, 1941, and August 15, 1945.43

    In addition, pursuant to Section 402 of the Veterans Programs Enhancement Act of 1998 ” rel=”nofollow”> P.L. 105-368), merchant mariners may qualify for interment or inurnment at a VA National Cemetery and VA burial benefits only if they were members of the United States Merchant Marine, Army Transport Service, or Naval Transport Service who served between August 16, 1945, and December 31, 1946.44


    Adam Salazar contributed to the update of this report.

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    Are You A Veteran If You Didnt Finish Basic Training

    For individuals who are currently in the military, active duty excludes training. If a member of the armed forces was discharged during basic training for medical reasons, they are still considered a veteran for Federal student aid purposes so long as they served at least one day before being discharged.

    Eligibility And Service Requirements

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    To be eligible for veterans’ benefits, one must be a “veteran” or a dependent of a “veteran” under M.G.L. c. 4, sec. 7, cl. 43rd as amended by the Acts of 2005, ch. 130. See below for service requirements and exceptions.

    • For GUARD MEMBERS to qualify they must have 180 days and have been activated under Title 10 of the U.S. Code -OR- Members who were activated under Title 10 or Title 32 of the U.S. Code or Massachusetts General Laws, chapter 33, sections 38, 40, and 41 must have 90 days, at least one of which was during wartime, per the above chart.
    • For RESERVISTS to qualify, they must have been called to regular active duty, at which point their eligibility can be determined by the above chart.

    *Naval and Marine DD214 must indicate Expeditionary Medal. All DD214’s must specify campaign: Lebanon, Granada, or Panama.

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    Va Employment And Job Training Benefits

    The VAs Voc Rehab Program provides education and training services, including vocational counseling and job-search assistance to National Guard and Reserve members with service-connected disabilities.

    If you have a service-connected disability that limits your ability to work or prevents you from working, Veteran Readiness and Employment can help.

    You may be eligible for Voc Rehab assistance in preparing for, obtaining, and maintaining suitable employment through VR& E if you are:

    • A veteran with a service-connected disability rated at 10% or more, OR
    • Hospitalized or receiving outpatient medical care, services or treatment for a service-connected disability pending discharge from active duty, OR
    • Severely ill or injured and have been referred to a military Physical Evaluation Board or are participating in the DoD/VA Integrated Disability Evaluation System process.

    You may also qualify for career counseling if you recently separated from the military or are using VA education benefits.

    Is Every Military Person A Veteran

    Title 38 of the Code of Federal Regulations defines a veteran as a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service and who was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable. This definition explains that any individual that completed a service for any branch of armed forces …

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    Can National Guard Get Va Benefits

    As a member of the National Guard or Reserve you may qualify for a wide range of benefits offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs . … VA benefits include disability compensation, pension, home loan guaranty, education, health care, insurance, vocational rehabilitation and employment, and burial.

    Is The Army National Guard The Same As The Army

    Omaha National Guard honors unaccompanied veterans

    Is the National Guard part of the army? The United States National Guard is the reserve component of the United States Army, which is used to supplement the army, strengthening its forces with additional combat units. The National Guard units fall under the dual control of the state and federal governments.

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    Us Guard And Reserve Members Are Officially Veterans

    Posted in Uncategorized on February 9, 2017 Tags: military, VA programs, veterans

    How do you define a veteran? Its a question many of us probably never considered. But for millions of retired National Guard members and Army Reservists, it is a matter of great honor. Up until recently December 2016 to be exact they couldnt officially call themselves veterans unless they had served at least 180 days of active duty on federal orders. Regardless of how much time you devoted to honorably supporting the Armed Forces, how many hours of training or deployments they experienced, there always remained a delineation line between full-time soldiers and reservists.

    For many reservists, this felt like a bit of a slight, since they had willingly volunteered countless hours of their lives to prepare to serve if needed, to fill any empty roles left when full-time servicemen and women were deployed, and to basically complete any task asked of them. It was understandably strange to have dedicated so much of ones life to the U.S. Armed Forces, and yet not be entitled to call oneself a veteran.

    The U.S. Army Reserve provides operational capability and strategic depth to the larger Army, accounting for 20% of the Armys maneuver support and delivering significant Army mobilization and expansion capability. When not on active duty, reserve soldiers typically perform Battle Assembly training/service once a month and for two continuous Annual Training weeks at some time during the year.

    What Is The National Guard

    The National Guard consists of two branches: the Army National Guard and the Air National Guard.

    Each U.S. state, territory and the District of Columbia has its own National Guard forces, funded through that entitys budget. The primary job of the National Guard is to defend the location to which it belongs and respond to state disasters and needs, such as earthquakes, floods or pandemics. The National Guard of any given location can also be federalized, receiving federal funding and responding in support of federal needs. That means National Guard units might deploy in support of overseas operations.

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    Whats The Purpose Of Part

    Reservists are in place to support active duty forces. All of the branches of the military have a Reserve branch that is under the US Department of Defense. This time, as well as the full-time training time completed each year, doesnt count as active duty time that can be accumulated for veterans benefits, despite Reserve members completing basic training and military job school.

    If Reservists are called into active duty at the discretion of the president or secretary of defense that time will count toward gaining military benefits.

    National Guard members are also considered part-time military members. The difference between Reservists and National Guard members is that the federal government oversees the Reserves while each individual state has its own National Guardboth Army National Guard and Air National Guard. Governors have the authority to call National Guard members on active duty and usually do so during emergencies that might be related to chaos or safety concerns, or natural emergencies.

    Just like Reservists, a good portion of the time dedicated to service in the National Guard does not count toward qualifying for veterans benefits, including the time spent in service when called up for state-related emergencies. However, if National Guard members are called into action by the president or secretary of stateknown as federal dutythose hours do count toward the requirements for veterans benefits.

    Consideration Of Civilian Groups For Veteran Status

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    Some groups of civilians who participated in World War I and World War II are also eligible for VA benefits. The GI Bill Improvement Act of 1977 ” rel=”nofollow”> P.L. 95-202) recognized the service of the Women’s Air Forces Service Pilots, a civilian group, as active service for benefits administered by the VA. That law also provided that the Secretary of Defense could determine that service for the Armed Forces by a group of civilians or contractors be considered active service for benefits administered by the VA.

    Based on the provisions of P.L. 95-202,34 the Secretary of Defense established that the Secretary of the Air Force would develop and maintain the process to determine if the wartime employment of certain groups of individuals is considered active duty military service for the purpose of receiving certain veterans’ benefits. If these groups are considered to be active duty by the Secretary, they are eligible to receive certain benefits, including health care.35

    Regulations implementing P.L. 95-202 specify which groups the Secretary has determined were employed in active duty service.36 The regulations also established the Department of Defense Civilian/Military Service Review Board and Advisory Panel to review each application for active duty status.37 Following its review, the board recommends to the Secretary whether the applicant group should be considered active duty for the purposes of the act the Secretary makes the final decision.

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