New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs


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Resources for Gold Star Families

State Benefits and Resources

Gold Star Families are immediate relatives of members of the United States Armed Forces who have been killed in combat or in support of certain military activities.

Through our network of regional Veterans Service Offices, the NJ Division of Veterans Services, Bureau of Veterans Benefits can provide Gold Star Families with information and guidance when applying for federal and/or state benefits and filing claims.

Trained Veteran Service Officers located throughout the State also assist Gold Star Families with issues pertaining to employment, education, burial, counseling, housing, social and medical services, and other areas of concern. Please make every effort to use these valuable services. For more infomation, please call 1-888-8NJ-VETS (1-888-865-8387).

Below are the State benefits that a Gold Star Family may qualify for:

Catastrophic Entitlement

New Jersey residents, who are wartime Veterans with a 100% permanent service-connected disability rating from the US Department of Veterans Affairs for one of seven disabilities declared to be catastrophic by the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs or the widow/widower of those Veterans who were in receipt of the entitlement prior to their death or would have been entitled to make such application, are eligible.

For more information, please call (609) 530-6954.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder & Readjustment Counseling

The State of New Jersey offers a program that addresses the readjustment problems of Veterans and offers treatment to combat Veterans of all war periods. Treatment is extended to the family members affected by the Veteran’s affliction. State Veterans Service Officers can assist with scheduling counseling and filing of any applicable VA claims. Contracted clinicians, experienced in PTSD counseling, determine the best course of treatment for the Veteran and the Veteran’s family.

For more information contact a local Veterans Service Officer or call (888) 865-8387.

War Orphans Tuition Assistance

Children of those service personnel who die while in the military or due to service-connected disabilities, or who are officially listed as MIA by the US Department of Defense may claim $500 per year for four years of college or equivalent training. To qualify, the Veteran must have been a state resident and the child must be a resident.

For more infomation, please call the Veterans Benefits Bureau at (609) 530-6949.

Property Tax Exemption/Deduction for Surviving Spouses

An annual $250 Veterans Property Tax Exemption/Deduction requires a Veteran to serve during a specific war time period. Any time served after 1975 requires the Veteran to have served at least 14 days in a combat zone (Haiti Operation Uphold Democracy is not approved for tax deduction/exemption purposes).

Disabled Veteran Exemption requires a 100% VA Certificate of Disability. The exemption should be permanent and total, partial or temporary is non-qualifying. The property must be owned and occupied by the claimant, and must be their legal residence in the state.

An annual $250.00 Veterans Property Tax Deduction requires citizenship, state residency, active wartime service in the US Armed Forces, honorable discharge, property ownership, and the timely completion of an application. If living, the Veteran must own the property in whole or in part to qualify for the deduction. Surviving spouse qualifies if all criteria are met. Eligibility for the deduction is established as of October 1 of the pre-tax year. The application can be filed at the local tax assessor’s office with appropriate documentation.

For more infomation, please call (888) 865-8387.

Civil Service Veterans Preferences for Surviving Spouses or Parents

Spouses of Veterans, surviving spouses of disabled Veterans or parents of Veterans who died in service are eligible for preference, if the Veteran would have been eligible for Veterans preference. Proper documentation is required (DD Form 214, Honorable Discharge Certificate, and VA Disability Award Letter).

For more infomation, please call the Veterans Benefits Bureau at (609) 530-6857.

Interment at BG William C. Doyle Cemetery for Surviving Spouses & Eligible Dependents

Free interment and perpetual care is available to Veteran residents of New Jersey, their spouses and dependent children. Pre-registration is encouraged. The cemetery is located at: 350 Province Line Road, Wrightstown, NJ 08562.

For more infomation, please call the Cemetery at (609) 738-2400.

Residence at NJ Veterans Memorial Homes for Surviving Spouses or Parents

The Division of Healthcare Services of the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs manages three Veterans Memorial Homes within the State. These homes provide long-term care for New Jersey Veterans. The homes are located in:

The following individuals, in order of priority, are eligible for admission consideration: A NJ Veteran that meets the NJ residency requirement as described in paragraph 1 of the definition of “Veteran” in NJAC 5A:5-1.2.; a spouse of a NJ Veteran who is eligible as a “spouse” or “surviving spouse” as described in paragraphs 2 and 3 of the definition of “eligible others” in NJAC 5A:5-1.2 and is a resident of this State; Gold Star parents and a Veteran who is not a NJ resident. Please call the Homes with any questions.

Federal Benefits and Resources

US Department of Veterans Affairs

Federal benefits for Veterans, Dependents and Survivors. For more information, please call 1-(800) 827-1000.

Survivor Outreach Services (SOS)

The SOS program is an Army-wide program which demonstrates our commitment to Families of the Fallen. SOS is a holistic and multi-agency approach to delivering services to Survivors by providing those services closest to where the Families live. The Survivor Outreach Services Coordinator you should contact depends on the county you reside in.

Learn more about SOS

Military OneSource

The central hub and go-to place for the military community. Browse by topic or search by questions for benefits, deployments, reintegration, moves, parenthood, and retirement.

For more information, please call (800) 342-9647 or visit www.militaryonesource.mil.

U.S. Army Gold Star Program

Official US Army page recognizing the sacrifices and strength of its Gold Star Mothers, Fathers, Siblings, Wives, Husbands and other Survivors. Includes survivor outreach services and resources.

For more information, please visit www.army.mil/goldstar/.

Social Security Administration

The United States Social Security Administration is an independent agency of the US federal government that administers Social Security, a social insurance program consisting of retirement, disability and survivors’ benefits.

For more information, please visit www.ssa.gov.

3rd Party Organizations

There are a number of 3rd party organizations that exist specifically to provide support and comradery to Gold Star Families.

Tragedy Assistance for Survivors (TAPS)

“Caring for the families of our fallen heroes.” Survivor resource information included.

For more information, please visit www.taps.org.

Gold Star Mothers

American Gold Star Mothers, Inc., is a private nonprofit organization of American mothers who lost sons or daughters in service of the United States Armed Forces. Resource information included.

For more information, please visit www.goldstarmoms.com.

Gold Star Wives

Women whose husbands died while serving in the Armed Forces of the United States or from service connected disabilities. Resource information included.

For more information, please visit www.goldstarwives.org.

Gold Star Dads

Gold Star Dads was created to bring together the “gold star” fathers in a single community, enabling them to honor and remember their sons and daughters, and to support one another in their loss. First and foremost they are a Gold Star Family Support Organization. Resource information included.

For more information, please visit www.goldstardads.org.

List of Fallen NJ Service Members

The state of New Jersey maintains a directory of fallen service members from all branches whose residence was in New Jersey at the time of their death. This directory is updated on a regular basis: www.nj.gov/fallenheroesmemorial/.