The Top 5 Veteran Benefits in California

A serene sky with a palm tree frames the US and California flags, highlighting the commitment to veterans' benefits in the Golden State.

Are you a Veteran residing in California? Many Californian Veterans aren’t aware of the full range of benefits California offers Veterans and their families. The Golden State is renowned for its commitment to those who have served in the military, with a range of benefits designed to support Veterans’ lives after service. Whether it’s housing assistance, education benefits, or health care services, California ensures its Veterans are well cared for. Keep reading to discover the Top 5 Veteran Benefits in California.


1. College Fee Waiver

One of the most notable benefits offered by the state of California is the College Fee Waiver for Veteran Dependents. This program waives mandatory system-wide tuition and fees at California’s educational institutions. While it doesn’t cover books, parking, or room and board, the College Fee Waiver offers eligibility through four plans:

  • Plan A: Targets unmarried children of veterans 100% disabled or deceased due to service-connected reasons.
  • Plan B: For children of veterans with a service-connected disability, or had one at the time of death, or died of service-related causes.
  • Plan C: Covers dependents of California National Guard members who died or became permanently disabled in the line of duty while on active service.
  • Plan D: Pertains to Medal of Honor recipients and their children under 27.

Applicants must meet California residency requirements, and thorough research of academic programs is advised before applying.


2. Property Tax Exemption

California provides a property tax exemption for the home of a 100% disabled Veteran or an unmarried spouse of a deceased disabled Veteran. This exemption has two levels:

  • Basic Exemption: Accessible to all qualifying claimants, adjusted annually based on inflation.
  • Low-Income Exemption: Available to claimants with an annual household income below a specified limit, adjusted annually based on inflation.

There’s no personal wealth restriction, and the exemption applies only to a principal residence.


3. California Veterans’ Homes

California is home to eight Veterans’ Homes located in:

  • Barstow
  • Chula Vista
  • Fresno
  • Lancaster
  • Redding
  • Ventura
  • West Los Angeles
  • Yountville

These facilities are equipped to provide a comprehensive suite of benefits, care, and accommodations for our Veterans. Veterans who are 55 and above and have been discharged from active military service under honorable conditions are eligible to apply for admission. It is important to note that the age requirement is waived for disabled or homeless Veterans who require long-term care. These homes aim to continuously support the health and well-being of dedicated individuals who have served our country, ensuring they are provided with the necessary resources and respect they deserve.


4. Employment Preference

Honorably discharged Veterans and their spouses, or surviving spouses of 100% disabled Veterans, are automatically ranked at the top of the eligibility list when they pass a test for state employment. California recognizes the importance of supporting Veterans in finding meaningful employment opportunities. 

Additionally, the state offers various programs and resources to assist Veterans in their transition from military to civilian life. These include job fairs, resume assistance, and training programs. In the spirit of this commitment, Veteran Ratings values the unique skills and experiences of Veterans. We are proud to have a team comprising many individuals who have successfully transitioned from military service to rewarding careers. If you’re exploring new opportunities, we invite you to consider the possibilities with us!


5. Business License, Tax and Fee Waiver

California proudly supports its Veterans in pursuing entrepreneurial activities after their service. Honorably discharged veterans intending to sell goods from a fixed location benefit from waived municipal, county, and state business license fees, along with other taxes and fees. This facilitates the establishment of small businesses, excluding the sales of alcoholic beverages. It showcases California’s commitment to a smooth transition for veterans into civilian life, particularly in the business sector.


California VA Disability Benefits

If you are a disabled Veteran in California, you may be eligible for additional benefits in addition to the state-specific benefits. Contact Veteran Ratings today at 619-916-4652 to schedule a risk-free consultation and see if you qualify. Our team is here to help!

We hope this information serves as a valuable guide for veterans navigating the array of benefits available to them in the Golden State. If you’re a Veteran living in California, it’s crucial to fully understand and access these benefits to enhance your quality of life. Thank you for your service, and welcome home!

Get In Touch

If you are struggling with your VA disability rating or want to learn more about our service, please get in touch with our Veteran Ratings team.

Don’t hesitate! We are happy to answer any of your questions and provide guidance for your unique case.

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