The VOW Act
The Veterans Opportunity to Work (VOW) to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 provides transitional assistance for service members, education and training opportunities for veterans, and tax credits for employers who hire veterans disabled due to service. For more information, visit www.benefits.va.gov/VOW.
Veterans and service members who meet the following qualifications are eligible to receive vocational rehabilitation services:
Evaluation establishes eligibility. A disabled veteran may receive employment assistance, self-employment assistance, training in a rehabilitation facility, college and other training. Severely disabled veterans may receive assistance helping them better live independently.
- Suffered a service-connected disability on active service after Sept. 15, 1940 and are receiving at least 20 percent compensation or would except for receipt of military retirement pay. Veterans with a 10 percent disability and serious employment handicap may also be eligible.
- Discharged or released under anything other than dishonorable conditions or hospitalized awaiting separation for a service-connected disability.
- In need of vocational rehab to overcome an employment handicap.
Chapter 31 Services
Under the VOW Act, veterans who have completed a vocational rehabilitation and employment program and exhausted rights to regular compensation are eligible to participate in an additional 12-month VA-sponsored rehabilitation program. This includes regular state unemployment compensation (UC), UC for ex-service members and UC for federal employees. The Department of Veterans Affairs is responsible for taking applications for additional Chapter 31 services, and applications must be received before March 31, 2014.
In order to be eligible for additional Chapter 31 services, a veteran must meet the following requirements:
- Previously completed a vocational rehabilitation and employment program.
- Exhausted all rights to regular compensation with respect to a benefit year.
- Have no rights to regular compensation with respect to a week.
- Not be receiving compensation with respect to such week under the UC law of Canada.
- Begin the additional program within six months of the date of regular compensation exhaustion.
Visit www.vba.va.gov/bln/vre/index.htm for more information on Chapter 31 and how to apply online.