Veteran Self-Identification Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some commonly asked questions regarding self-identification of Veteran Status for employment within the Executive Branch of Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

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How do we define Veteran for the purpose of self-identification?

“Veteran” shall mean (1) any person, (a) whose last discharge or release from his wartime service as defined herein, was under honorable conditions and who (b) served in the army, navy, marine corps, coast guard, or air force of the United States, or on full time national guard duty under Titles 10 or 32 of the United States Code or under sections 38, 40 and 41 of chapter 33 for not less than 90 days active service, at least 1 day of which was for wartime service; provided, however, than any person who so served in wartime and was awarded a service-connected disability or a Purple Heart, or who died in such service under conditions other than dishonorable, shall be deemed to be a veteran notwithstanding his failure to complete 90 days of active service; (2) a member of the American Merchant Marine who served in armed conflict between December 7, 1941 and December 31, 1946, and who has received honorable discharges from the United States Coast Guard, Army, or Navy; (3) any person (a) whose last discharge from active service was under honorable conditions, and who (b) served in the army, navy, marine corps, coast guard, or air force of the United States for not less than 180 days active service; provided, however, that any person who so served and was awarded a service-connected disability or who died in such service under conditions other than dishonorable, shall be deemed to be a veteran notwithstanding his failure to complete 180 days of active service.

Why should I self-identify?

a. The Commonwealth is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive workforce; by self-identifying you will help us know if we are achieving that goal.

b. In addition, there may be benefits available to you as a veteran that we can apprise you of if you elect to self-identify.

c. The opportunity to gather with other Veterans at any specific event that may be of interest.

What paperwork is involved in the self-identification process?

In most instances the only paperwork you would need to submit is (a) a completed Self-Identification Form and (b) a copy of your DD214 Form.

If you are self-identifying as a Vietnam Era Veteran and seeking a certificate, you would need to submit a DD214 along with a certified application in order to have a certificate issued from the Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity

If you are self-identifying as a Disabled Veteran you would need to submit copy of your DD214 Member-4 Form along with written confirmation from the US Veterans Administration of continuing service incurred disability rated not less than 10% based on wartime service.

If I am a Veteran, am I required to self-identify?


If I change my mind, may I pull back my self-identification?

Yes, you have the option to pull back your self-identification.

Where is the information kept?

Your self-identification information is kept in your personnel file. It is also recorded in HR/CMS in the Veteran’s Section. For those identifying as a Disabled Veteran, the information is kept with the agency ADA Coordinator.

When can I self-identify?

You can self-identify at anytime by contacting your Human Resources Department or your Diversity Officer/Director.

What are the benefits of self-identification?

Based on your Veteran status you may be eligible for other benefits (I.e. Civil Service, Retirement, etc.) Pursuant to Civil Service Laws, veterans are entitled to a veteran’s preference on eligibility lists for official service positions in which a civil service exam is administered and a passing score is achieved. Veterans may be afforded preference on the list for labor service positions. In addition, veterans may receive a hiring preference for original provisional appointments where the veteran is deemed to be qualified for the position and possesses the knowledge, skills and abilities necessary to perform the duties of the position. See: MGL c. 31 § 26 and PAR 14.2. Your Human Resources Director can provide additional information on how to explore all benefits available to you. You may also want to visit for a comprehensive list of benefits for which you may be eligible.

What's in it for me?

• By self-identifying I will be helping to shape a more diverse and inclusive workforce, that reflects the citizens of the Commonwealth

• Gives me the opportunity to have more information on accessing all appropriate credits/substitutions for my military service

• I will be more informed about “Happenings” for the veteran’s community

   – Letters of Acknowledgement (Secretary, Commissioner)

   – Seminars

   – Webinars

   – Gatherings

• I can get help viewing my skills against the newly developed Military-Cross Walk

• Networking opportunities with other veterans

• By sharing my experience, leadership, commitment, and knowledge, I can encourage other veterans to consider the benefits of public service.

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