Veterans' Preference for Open Competitive Exams

Civil service uses a system of absolute veteran's preference in which someone qualifying as a veteran who receives 70 points or above on an open competitive exam (including police and firefighter) is immediately placed at the head of the eligibility list. This does not mean that the veteran automatically gets the job (M.G.L. c. 31, s. 27). He/she is just placed at the head of the list. Veterans are given preference (M.G.L. c. 31, s. 26) in the eligibility lists of civil service positions. Lists are established in the following order:

  1. disabled veterans, in order of their respective standings;
  2. veterans, in the order of their respective standings;
  3. widows or widowed mothers of veterans who were killed in action or died from a service-connected disability incurred in wartime service, in the order of their respective standings;
  4. all other, in the order of their respective standings.

Disabled Veterans

"Disabled veterans" are defined as those who

  1. have a continuing service-incurred disability of not less than 10 percent based on wartime service for which they are receiving or entitled to received compensation from the VA, or, provided that such disability is permanent physical disability, for which they have been retired from any branch of the armed forces and are receiving or entitled to receive a retirement allowance, OR
  2. have a continuing service-incurred disability based on wartime service for which they are receiving or are entitled to receive a statutory award from the VA. (M.G.L. c. 31 s. 1)

Veterans' Preference for Promotional Exams

All types of veterans have two points added to their scores. They are not placed at the head of the list. (HRD Personnel Administration Rule 14)

Labor Service

There is no exam required for labor service positions. Veterans, whether disabled or not, are placed at the top of the eligibility list. Spouses and single parents are placed below veterans but above all other applicants.

Contact

Human Resource Division
One Ashburton Place, 2nd-3rd Floor
Boston, MA 02108
617-727-6215