Contents

Best Bets

Massachusetts Laws

Massachusetts Regulations

Massachusetts Executive Orders

Federal Laws

Federal Regulations

Selected Case Law

Web Sources

Print Sources


Best Bets

Mass VetsAdvisor , Mass. Department of Veterans' Services
Information on federal and state veterans' benefits with a guided search that tailors results to individual veterans, showing only benefits for which they qualify.

Veterans' Laws and Benefits , Secretary of the Commonwealth, September, 2015
An overview of the resources and services available to Massachusetts veterans in education, employment, housing, motor vehicles, property taxes, and medical assistance.

Veterans' Resources, Mass. Attorney General, November 2015.
Provides access to information on a variety of topics,including finances, housing, medical care, education, motor vehicles, legal assistance, information for family members, support groups and more.

Massachusetts Laws

MGL c. 4, s. 7 Definition of who is a veteran
MGL c. 115 Veterans' benefits
MGL c. 15A, s. 16 Public service scholarship program for children of veterans killed in action
MGL c. 15A, s. 19  Tuition and fee waiver for veterans attending state colleges and universities
MGL c.15E Interstate compact on educational opportunity for military children
MGL c. 59, s. 5 Property tax exemptions for veterans
MGL c.132A, s.2D (as amended by St.2015, c.132) Free access to certain parks for Purple Heart recipients
MGL c. 151B, s. 4 Prohibiting employment discrimination against veterans
MGL c.272, s.106 (added by St.2015, c.128) Stolen Valor Act
MGL c. 276A, s. 10-11 Pretrial diversion of veterans charged with a crime
St. 2009, c. 132 An Act Providing Benefits to Veterans and Service Members
St. 2012, c. 108 An Act Relative to Veterans' Access, Livelihood, Opportunity and Resources. Includes Section 16:  A defendant who is determined to be a veteran, on active service or has a history of military service in the armed forces of the United States and who is eligible for diversion or treatment  under section 10 may, at arraignment, be afforded a 14-day continuance by the court to seek an assessment by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.  A probation officer shall have jurisdiction to divert to a program any person who is a veteran and who would benefit from a 14-day continuance to determine whether he or she is eligible for diversion to treatment services in lieu of imprisonment.
St. 2014, c. 62 (Valor Act II) An Act Relative to Veterans' Allowances, Labor, Outreach and Recognition. Some of the highlights of the bill include creating a home modification program to help injured veterans stay in their homes. The purpose of this program is to provide funding for home modifications services made necessary by the functional limitations associated with the veteran’s service-connected disability. Other highlights include allowing students enrolled in college, who are called to active duty, to either complete their course work without penalty after returning or to withdraw and receive a tuition refund, increasing penalties for disturbing military funerals by a fine of not more than $2,000 or by imprisonment for not more than 2 years in a house of correction, or both, and guard against charity fraud by mandating that organizations shall, prior to such solicitation, apply for designation as a veterans’ charitable organization

Massachusetts Regulations

108 CMR Department of Veterans' Benefits

Massachusetts Executive Orders

EO 565: Massachusetts Supplier Diversity Program pdf format of eo565.pdf
: Applies to veteran-owned businesses

Federal Laws

38 U.S.C. , Veteran's Benefits
38 U.S.C. Chapter 33 , Post-9/11 GI Bill (education benefits for veterans)
38 U.S.C. Chapter 43 , Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act

Federal Regulations

38 CFR Chapter 1 Department of Veterans Affairs

Selected Case Law

Allen v. Principi , 237 F.3d 1368 (Fed. Cir. 2001) 
38 U.S.C. § 1110, which precludes disability benefits for injuries caused by a veteran's alcohol or drug abuse, does not preclude benefits for a veteran whose alcohol or drug problem is a result of or evidence of a service-connected injury.

Casey v. Casey , 79 Mass. App. Ct. 623 (2011)
A veteran's disability benefits constitute income for purposes of child support.

Cushman v. Shinseki , 576 F.3d 1290 (Fed. Cir. 2009)
Veterans cannot be denied benefits without due process, including notice and fair opportunity to be heard.

D'Amico v. West , 209 F.3d 1322 (Fed. Cir. 2000) 
"A claim for veteran's disability benefits has five elements: (1) veteran status; (2) existence of a disability; (3) service connection of the disability; (4) degree of disability, and (5) effective date of the disability. The veteran must have been "'discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable.'"

Web Sources

  • Bay State Patriot, Mass. Department of Veterans' Services
    Newsletter with  updates on programs and services available to Massachusetts veterans.
  • Federal Benefits for Veterans , Dependents and Survivors, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 2014
    194-page book summarizes the programs and services available to veterans and their families under Title 38 of the Unites States Code.
  • GI Bill Website , U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
    Comprehensive source of information on all educational benefits available under the GI Bill.
  • Just the Judge for the Job , Mass. Bar Association's Lawyers Journal, January 2013
    Report on the Norfolk County Veterans' Treatment Court, a program that provides veterans an alternative to prison. 
  • Local Veterans' Service Officers, Mass. Department of Veterans' Services
    An alphabetized list, by city, of service officers and their contact information. County Veterans Service Officers (CVSO), are employed by their respective states, and are knowledgeable individuals who know their way around the VA system.
  • Resource Guide for Veterans and Servicemembers pdf format of Resource Guide for Veterans and Servicemembers
, Mass. Attorney General's Office, November, 2015
    Provides, in one central location, some of the most frequently accessed private and public benefits and services among the thousands of resources available to veterans, military servicemembers and their families in Massachusetts.
  • Servicemembers.gov , U.S. Department of Justice
    Information about laws protecting the civil rights of military personnel and veterans.
  • USERRA Advisor , U.S. Department of Labor
    Overview of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA) with questions and answers to help veterans learn about their USERRA rights.
  • Veterans Education , Mass. Dept. of Higher Education.
    Provides information for veterans, service members and dependents on resources available to further their education goals.
  • Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) , U.S. Department of Labor
    Resources to help veterans prepare for meaningful careers, develop expertise, and find employment. Includes section on employment rights.
  • Veterans Legal Services
    Provides free legal advice to homeless and low-income veterans in the Greater Boston area. "Veterans Legal Services' mission is to promote self-sufficiency, stability, and financial security of homeless and low-income veterans through free and accessible legal services."
  • Veterans' Service Benefits , Mass. Legal Help
    Information on the assistance available to veterans and their families who are facing financial hardship in an easy-to-read format
  • Veterans Treatment Courts , Mass. Trial Court
    "Veterans’ treatment courts are designed to handle criminal cases involving defendants who have a history of military service through a coordinated effort among the veterans services delivery system, community-based providers, and the court, thereby improving public safety while dealing with the underlying issues of posttraumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and military sexual trauma." There are currently five veterans treatments courts: Boston, Dedham, Framingham, Holyoke and Lawrence.

Print Sources


Last update: January 11, 2016

Questions, comments or corrections on this website? Contact the law libraries' webperson. Questions about legal information? Contact our Reference Librarians.

See all topics