The War on Terrorism:
Veteran Business Opportunities
Education & Employment
Burial & Cemetery Benefits:
VA Health Care
Homeless or Displaced Veterans
The War on Terrorism
I have heard there is a special program to help severely disabled soldiers and their families get access to services and benefits. Where can I get more information on this program?
The U.S. Army established the Disabled Soldier Support System (DS3), a comprehensive advocacy program to help severely disabled Soldiers and their families as they attempt to tap into services available to them through the military and the Department of Veterans Affairs. DS3 gives disabled Soldiers (active or reserve) one-stop shopping for help with financial, administrative, medical, vocational, other needs. It helps them sort out the medical and vocational benefits for which they qualify and provides an advocate for them during their rehabilitation. A Soldier can make contact with DS3 by calling
(800) 833-6622 weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.; or E-mail at ArmyDS3@hoffman.army.mil.
Where can I get a list of service members killed in action during the war on terrorism (including Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom)?
The Department of Defense (DOD) maintains a list of service members killed in action during these operations at the "Fallen Warriors" website.
Veteran Business Opportunities
How do I become certified as a Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE)?
Go to the Department of General Services website to learn about certification and the advantages of being a certified DVBE and doing business with the State of California. www.dgs.ca.gov/pd/Home.aspx
Where do I get start-up money for my business?
Go to the Small Business Administration (SBA) at www.sba.gov to learn about financing options and other helpful new business ideas.
What is the difference between DVBE and SDVOB?
DVBE (Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise) is a certification process with the State of California. SDVOB (Service Disabled Veteran Owned Business) is a Federal designation and has a different set of guidelines. The two designations are not interchangeable.
Education & Employment
I am recently separated from the military or just returning from a deployment. How do I apply for unemployment benefits in CA?
You can apply for unemployment benefits online at www.edd.ca.gov/unemployment.
Can I transfer my GI Bill benefit to my spouse/dependent?
Please contact the United States Department of Veterans Affairs Education Hotline at: (888) GIBILL-1 to find out if you are eligible for this benefit.
How Do I apply for a Work-Study Position?
You must be a veteran or dependent of a 100% service connected disabled veteran attending college at least ¾ time on a VA program such as Montgomery GI Bill or Vocational Rehab. Bring certification of your enrollment and a completed application to your local County Veterans Service Office at www.cacvso.org or call 1-800-952-5626.
Does the state have any programs to help pay for education?
Yes, the state offers the College Fee Waiver Program for eligible dependents of disabled veterans. Tuition and registration fees will be waived at any UC, CSU, or Community College for eligible applicants.
How do I qualify for the College Fee Waiver Program?
You must be the dependent of an eligible disabled veteran with a service connected disability rating of 0% or higher. Some other qualifications are required under specific plans.
What do I need to do to apply for the College Fee Waiver Program?
You need to bring an application which can be obtained from the CA Department of Veteran Affairs website or your local CVSO. You must include with you application proof of dependency (i.e. birth certificate, adoption records, marriage license), proof of service connected disability and proof of income. Proof of income is not required for dependents of 100% service-connected disabled veteran dependents.
Can I use the College Fee Waiver Program to go to a private college or technical school (i.e. Lincoln Technical Institute, DeVry University or University of Phoenix)?
No, the Dependent Fee Waiver can only be used at California State Universities, a University of California or a California Community College.
How can I get a copy of my discharge document (DD214)?
Veterans who need assistance with obtaining military medals and records to which they may be entitled can contact the California Department of Veterans Affairs at 1-800-952-5626 or go online to www.archives.gov/veterans/ and use the "eVetRecs" request system. You can also submit a US Government "Standard Form 180" and mail it to the following address: National Personnel Records Center, Military Records, 9700 Page Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63132-5100.
I applied for a copy of my DD-214 and have not received it yet, where is it?
Once you have allowed sufficient time for us to receive and process your request (about 10 days), you may check the status of your request by e-mail through our NPRC Customer Service Center at email@example.com. Please provide the request number if you have one, the name, address and phone number of the requester, and the veteran's branch of service to aid us to finding your request in our system. You will receive a return e-mail from us with a projected completion date for your request.
You may also telephone the NPRC Customer Service Line (this is a long-distance call for most customers): 314-801-0800
Burial & Cemetery Benefits
Where are National Cemeteries located?
You can find the location of all national and state cemeteries, including Arlington National Cemetery, at the USDVA website National Cemeteries .
What are the eligibility requirements for burial in a national cemetery?
The eligibility requirements for burial in either a national or state cemetery are generally the same; details can be found at Eligibility Criteria. Be sure to check the individual cemetery’s website to be sure that they are still accepting new internments.
The criteria for burial in Arlington National cemetery are stricter, specific information can be found at Arlington Burial Eligibility.
How can I find where someone was buried in a national veteran’s cemetery?
The USDVA maintains a nationwide database of burials at veteran’s cemeteries; you can search for the burial location at Grave Locator.
What burial benefits does the USDVA provide for veterans?
The USDVA provides burial benefits for veterans, which depend upon whether the veteran is being buried in a private cemetery or a national or state cemetery. You can obtain specific information about these benefits and how to apply for the benefits at the Burial Benefits website.
My (Parent, Spouse, Dependent) has passed away. Can they be laid to rest in a Veteran Cemetery?
Veterans and certain dependents of veterans may be interred in a Veteran Cemetery if they meet the eligibility requirements. For a complete list of eligibility requirements please visit www.va.gov and select cemeteries. Eligibility requirements for State run Veteran Cemeteries can be found by visiting our Veterans Cemetery page.
How do I get a Veterans Memorial for my (Parent, Spouse, Dependent) gravesite?
When burial or memorialization is in a national, post, or state Veterans' cemetery, a headstone or marker will be ordered by the cemetery officials based on inscription information provided by the next of kin.
When burial is in a private cemetery, VA Form 40-1330, Application for Standard Government Headstone or Marker must be submitted by the next of kin or a representative, such as funeral director, cemetery official or Veterans counselor, along with Veterans military discharge documents, to request a Government-provided headstone or marker. Do not send original documents, as they will not be returned extra fees may apply.
How do I get my name or my (Parent, Spouse, Dependent) name entered into the Veterans Memorial Registry?
You may either download an enrollment form to fill out and send to us. (If you wish, you may also use this form to make an additional donation* to the Memorial Fund.) You may also register on-line on our web site. For more information please write to the California Veterans Memorial Project at 1227 "O" Street, Sacramento, CA 95814 or call at
How do I find out about all the benefits that I may be entitled to?
The best way to find out about all benefits that you might be entitled to is to register with the Reintegration Program. You can do so online at: https://my.calvet.ca.gov/Pages/Intake/ReintegrationForm.aspx or by going to your local County Veterans Service Office. By completing the form, we will instantly email you the requested information, and it can also allow for someone to contact you to assist you every step of the way.
How do I get a Veterans License Plate?
Veteran License Plate decals are available online and can be obtained by visiting www.dmv.ca.gov. You can get an application by contacting California Department of Veteran Affairs, or by visiting your local County Veteran Service Officer. Ordering Veterans License Plates should be available on the California DMV website in early 2011. Veteran License Plates are available to CA residents and proceeds directly support CA veterans.
I purchased a Veterans License Plate; do I still have to pay registration fees to the state?
Yes, Veterans License Plates are $30.00 in addition to any other DMV fees you may be liable for. There is an additional one time $10.00 fee for personalized license plates.
Does California offer free hunting or fishing licenses?
No, but CA does offer reduced fee hunting and fishing licenses to eligible veterans with a 50% or higher service connected disability rating. Contact The California Department of Fish and Game License and Revenue Branch 1740 N. Market Blvd. Sacramento, CA 95834 Phone (916) 928-5805 for more information.
Does California offer free park passes?
Yes. Honorably discharged war veterans who are residents of California with an overall /combined rating at 50% or greater service-connected disability, or were held as prisoners of war by forces hostile to the United States, or recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor are eligible to receive the Distinguished Veteran Pass (formerly Disabled War Veteran/Prisoner of War Pass). This is a free, lifetime pass. Contact California State Parks, Attn: Distinguished Veteran Pass Program, P.O. Box 942896, Sacramento, CA 94296-0001.
Other disabled veterans may be eligible for the California State Parks Disabled Discount Pass, which entitles the bearer to a 50% discount for most California State Parks fees. This is a lifetime pass and costs only $3.50. Contact California State Parks, Attn: Disabled Discount Pass Program, P.O. Box 942896, Sacramento, CA 94296-0001.
For more information about both of these programs, please call 800.777.0369 ext. 3 or 916.653.8280.
How do I file for a disability claim?
If this is the first time you have filed a claim or you have done so in the in the past where you were granted or denied benefits, we recommend contacting your local County Veterans Service Office www.cacvso.org or call
I did not receive or I lost my pension/disability check. What do I do?
You should contact your local County Veteran Service Office at www.cacvso.org or call the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs at
Am I eligible for a property tax exemption?
Completely disabled veterans or their unmarried surviving spouse can receive a property tax exemption on the assessed value of a home of: a) Up to $122,128 if the total household income from all sources is over $54,842
per year.b) Up to $183,193 if the total household income from all sources is under $54,842 per year. Full eligibility requirements can be found by visiting the other benefits section of our webpage.
I am in danger of or have lost my home? What can I do?
There are several different programs available to assist to veteran facing foreclosure. Please contact the United States Department of Veterans Affairs at
(800) 827-1000 for more information about eligibility.
I want to talk to someone about my claim for benefits because: it is taking too long/is not the right amount/forgot to consider everything/the claim was denied/etc.
As a state agency, the California Department of Veterans Affairs has no jurisdiction over the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs. However, district office staff of the California Department of Veterans Affairs assist veterans and their dependents in obtaining these benefits through the process of application and representation of claims.
There is also an excellent network of County Veterans Service Offices (CVSO) that can help you with filing a claim, understanding the claim process, understanding the USDVA’s decision on your claim, or assisting in filing an appeal. To locate your CVSO, check out this listing of addresses and phone numbers at CVSO locations.
Or you can contact the USDVA directly at (800) 827-1000.
I want to talk to someone about the poor medical care I received at the USDVA hospital/clinic/pharmacy/etc.
As a state agency, the California Department of Veterans Affairs has no jurisdiction over the U. S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Complaints about medical care should be made to the Director of the facility, or the Ombudsman of the facility or the Veteran Integrated Service Network Director. Contact addresses and phone numbers can be found at USDVA Medical Facilities in California.
Or you can contact the USDVA directly at (800) 827-1000.
How can I find the location of the nearest USDVA medical facility?
In California - USDVA Medical Facilities in California.
Other States - USDVA Medical Facilities - Nationwide.
How can I find the location of the nearest USDVA regional office?
In California - USDVA Regional Offices in California.
Other States - USDVA Regional Offices - Nationwide.
VA Health Care
How do I get a veteran's ID card?
Your local VA Healthcare facility will issue ID cards to veterans that are enrolled in Healthcare benefits. Also, certain Veteran Service Organizations issue member ID cards.
How do I enroll in the VA Healthcare system?
You can enroll online at www.1010ez.med.va.gov/sec/vha/1010ez/ , at your local County Veteran Service Office or any VA facilities.
I have a medical appointment and can't get to the hospital. Does the VA have a transportation program?
Transportation can be arranged through a volunteer network to VA facilities.
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||(213) 253-2677 Ext. 4604
||(650) 493-5000 Ext. 63645
||(415) 221-4810 Ext. 5612
||(310) 478-3711 Ext. 49062
Homeless or Displaced Veterans
I am a homeless veteran in need of help, who can I call?
You can call the VA's National Resource Call Center (for homeless veterans) at:
(877) 4AID VET (1-877-424-3838)
Where can I find rental assistance?
You can find organizations that provide rental assistance at: www.rentalassistance.us, or by calling The National Resource Directory at: Call
(877)-4AID VET (1-877-424-3838).
Where can I find emergency shelters?
Local churches and faith-based organizations such as Catholic Charities, Salvation Army and Volunteers of America may have a variety of programs to assist you. Find these organizations by calling your county or city Department of Social Services. Check the phone book blue pages for the number. Or dial 2-1-1.
I have tickets and am unable to pay for them, where can I go for help?
Many small violations can be handled through homeless courts and at local Stand Down events. Contact your local County Veterans Service Office for assistance at www.cacvso.org
I am trying to locate my father/ex-husband/friend/etc who is a veteran and is living in California. Can you help?
The State of California does not maintain a database of veterans living in California. You may wish to try the various search engines available on the Internet.
I lost my check yesterday. How do I get another one reissued and how long will it take?
If it was a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs check, contact them ASAP at
How can I obtain military medals that were earned by a veteran.
Requests for the issuance or replacement of military service medals, decorations, and awards should be directed to the specific branch of the military in which the veteran served. However, for Air Force (including Army Air Corps) and Army personnel, the National Personnel Records Center will verify the awards to which a veteran is entitled and forward the request with the verification to the appropriate service department for issuance of the medals. Visit the Military Awards & Decorations website for forms and additional information.
Where can I get a list of Medal of Honor recipients?
The U.S. Army maintains a web site with a list of Medal of Honor recipients and includes a copy of the individual citation.
I’d like to have someone come to my school/organization to talk about the importance of Veterans Day, whom should I contact?
We suggest that you contact one of the military commands in your area. Many active duty and reserve commands have speakers bureaus specifically organized to speak in the community on a wide variety of subjects. Thank you for your support of our veterans. Here are some contacts that we have developed for Northern California:
- Travis AFB Speakers Bureau: To request a speaker send a request letter by e-mail or fax to the Travis Community Relations Office (firstname.lastname@example.org) Phone: (707) 424-0132. Please provide the following information: name of organization, grade of school class (if appropriate), name and telephone number of your point of contact for the speaking engagement, date and time of the event, topics you'd like the speaker to address, along with any other special requirements or requests.
- Beale AFB Community Relations: The Community Relations division can be reached at (530) 634-8889/8894.
- Naval Reserve Commands:
The Sacramento Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center. Toll free contact is:
The Alameda Naval and Marine Corps Reserve Center (800) 748-2224
- National Guard: Public Affairs Main Telephone Number (916) 854-3304