VA Benefits for Purple Heart Veterans by State

VA Benefits for Purple Heart Veterans by State

Many Veterans go above and beyond the call of duty. Fewer people receive the Purple Heart medal, one of the rarest and most important decorations a military member can receive. The Purple Heart is only awarded to service members wounded or killed due to enemy action while serving in the US military.

Given the distinction and honor of receiving the Purple Heart medal, many Veterans are entitled to additional VA benefits depending on their state of residence. Read on for a breakdown of Purple Heart benefits by state.


Alabama Veterans have two benefits they can take advantage of: a special Purple Heart license plate and a scholarship. The scholarship makes up the difference between the Veteran’s GI Bill and other Veteran benefits and their tuition for schooling.

Even better, Veterans who already have their tuition paid for will receive $2,500 per year thanks to this Purple Heart benefit. 


Arizona Veterans can benefit from a tuition waiver program. It includes tuition-free education up to a bachelor’s degree at any Arizona public state university or community college. To qualify, the Veteran must have received a Purple Heart after September 11, 2001, or have received a Purple Heart at any time with a VA disability rating of 50% or more.


Veterans from Connecticut may receive a 10-point disability preference if they receive a Purple Heart. Veterans may add disability preference points to federal employment hiring preferences. Veterans with Purple Hearts get hiring priority compared to other candidates. Furthermore, Purple Heart Veterans from Connecticut qualify for two sets of Military Order of the Purple Heart license plates.


If you’re a Veteran from Delaware and have a Purple Heart, you are eligible for a free Purple Heart license plate for your state-registered vehicle.


Veterans who live in Florida can take advantage of free undergraduate-level tuition at all state universities, community colleges, and career and technical training facilities. You might qualify for these benefits if you received a Purple Heart or other higher decoration.


If you’re a Veteran from Idaho, you could qualify for several state-related benefits. First, you’ll receive 10 points toward your preference eligibility and applying to federal job positions.

Second, you qualify for the Idaho Purple Heart license plate. You can have two free sets of license plates if you so choose.


Veterans from Illinois get 10 preference points added to their scores for examinations for open federal job positions. Illinois Veterans also get 10 preference points when applying to open state positions, such as those in the state government. Lastly, Illinois Veterans qualify for one free set of Illinois Purple Heart license plates, which you can also request plates for motorcycles.


Indiana Veterans have a big benefit for themselves and their children: 100% tuition coverage and regularly assessed college fees. Notably, this benefit covers 124 credit hours of undergraduate or professional degree-level tuition for Indiana veterans or their children, provided the Veteran in question has a Purple Heart.

Indiana Veterans also receive 10 points toward their disability preference exam when applying for federal jobs. The Indiana Purple Heart license plate is available free of charge, but personalization is another $45 fee.


Iowa considers all Veterans who have received a Purple Heart to have service-connected disability, regardless of whether they receive VA disability benefits. Thus, they automatically receive a 10-point disability preference when applying for federal and state jobs.

Qualifying Veterans may also receive a free copy of the Iowa Purple Heart license plate. You can personalize it for $25.


All Veterans who received a Purple Heart qualify for hiring preferences for Kansas State job positions. Furthermore, they qualify for the Kansas Combat Wounded Purple Heart license plate. You can customize it with different crosses and stars depending on one’s preferences.


Kentucky Veterans qualify for a unique Purple Heart license plate. It initially costs $26 and has a $14 annual renewal fee.


Qualifying Veterans may receive a Louisiana Purple Heart license plate free of charge. These don’t come with any renewal requirements or fees as well. Unmarried surviving spouses can keep the license plate provided they transfer it to their names.

Veterans who have received a Purple Heart can also purchase Louisiana hunting and fishing licenses at resident prices.


Maine Veterans qualify for a unique state license plate. Vehicles have no registration fee, provided your vehicle has a registered weight of fewer than 10,000 pounds. You get two sets of license plates for free.


If you’re a Veteran from Maryland with a Purple Heart, you can receive a Maryland Purple Heart license plate. However, it is not free. You’ll also benefit from half-price Maryland hunting licenses.


Massachusetts has significant Purple Heart benefits to keep in mind. You get a $400 tax exemption against your property taxes plus the option to purchase up to four years of military service toward your Massachusetts retirement. You can purchase this at a rate of one year of active military service for one year of your Massachusetts retirement. Then, you also qualify for the Massachusetts Purple Heart license plate.

Last but not least is Massachusetts free state parking for all Purple Heart recipients, regardless of whether you are disabled.


Qualifying Michigan Veterans are eligible for the Michigan Combat Wounded Veteran Purple Heart license plate, which is just five dollars.


Minnesota Veterans qualify for Purple Heart license plates and free Minnesota state park passes in perpetuity. Minnesota residents with one or more Purple Hearts receive first preference in drawings for special hunts, like deer hunts, bear and turkey lotteries, and more.


Mississippi provides injured Veterans with state employment hiring preferences at a rate of 10 points. Mississippi residents also qualify for a special state license plate.


Missouri Veterans with a Purple Heart are eligible for a special state license plate. You get one free set of plates per application. Furthermore, you qualify for free parking at state parks, in metered parking spaces, and any parking lots or garages at Missouri public colleges or universities, except for during special events.


Montana Veterans qualify for state position employment preferences, plus fee waivers for Montana vehicles and cemetery services. You can also apply for the Montana disabled Veteran license plate if awarded the Purple Heart and have service-connected disability rating of 50% or greater.


Nebraska Veterans qualify for special state license plates. These are free, but you must submit the proper paperwork.


Veterans from Nevada qualify for tuition waivers, lab fees, and other associated fees at state institutions. Special state license plates are also available for an initial fee of seven dollars with no annual renewal fee.

New Jersey

New Jersey Veterans qualify for special state license plates, which are available for $15. These Veterans also get free parking at New Jersey parking meters for up to 24 hours.

New Mexico

New Mexico residents qualify for two free special Purple Heart license plates.

New York

New York State Veterans can access a special disability supplement program and special Purple Heart license plates.

North Carolina

Carolina residents can access special state license plates suitable for automobiles or motorcycles.


Ohio residents with Purple Hearts are eligible for special state license plates with no fees.


Oklahoma residents get special hiring prioritization when applying to state jobs, plus access to Oklahoma Purple Heart license plates.


The dependents of Oregon Veterans who received a Purple Heart can take advantage of a tuition waiver program. It provides a full tuition waiver, not including fees for Oregon public universities or colleges for a bachelor’s or master’s degree. Veterans themselves receive preference for state employment. 

The Oregon Purple Heart license plates are also available for a fee of $10 to $20, depending on your vehicle’s condition.


Pennsylvania Veterans can use a Purple Heart license plate offer, which is free by default.

Rhode Island

The Rhode Island Purple Heart license plates are available to Veterans who were wounded in combat. Your vehicle cannot weigh over 10,000 pounds, but no initial or renewal fees exist.

South Carolina

The children of Veterans who receive a Purple Heart may qualify for the South Carolina Education Assistance and Free Tuition offer. It covers free tuition to the children of those Veterans who attend a South Carolina state-supported college or university or post-high school technical education institution. Veterans may qualify for the Purple Heart license plates.

South Dakota

South Dakota Veterans qualify for special state license plates, which cost $10 initially and $10 every year afterward.


Texas Veterans qualify for special state license plates, which you can personalize for a $40 fee.


Purple Heart recipients from Utah are eligible for full tuition waiving at Utah System of Higher Education schools. They can use it for any degree up to the master’s level. 

Veterans further receive state-appointed hiring preferences of up to 10 points and the Veteran Implement Opportunity Program, which gives Veterans the ability to be hired into career service positions without going through a traditional competitive hiring process.

Lastly, Veterans can access the Combat Wounded license plate, which has no special fees or contribution requirements.


Washington residents qualify for the special state Purple Heart license plate. The first set is free, and you can personalize it.


Vermont residents qualify for special Purple Heart license plates.


Virginia Veterans qualify for special state license plates, which can be personalized and available with disability symbols.

West Virginia

West Virginia Purple Heart recipients are eligible for a tuition waiver, which can be applied to all state-supported higher education institutions. Veterans also receive preferential hiring for state positions and qualify for special license plates.


Wisconsin Veterans automatically qualify for spring turkey harvest licenses and other hunting licenses at steep discounts.


Wyoming Veterans qualify for state license plates, which are free and can be acquired through local county treasurer offices.

Contact Berry Law

As you can see, whether it’s a special license plate or free tuition for college, it’s a good idea to take advantage of Purple Heart benefits no matter which state you live in. However, it’s also wise to apply for VA disability benefits if you were injured and your injury has resulted in long-lasting complications or health conditions.

Berry Law may be able to help with this. Our experienced attorneys can assist when filing a claim for new benefits or when appealing a previously denied claim for benefits. Contact us today for a free case evaluation and more information.


9 Things You Need to Know About the Purple Heart Medal | USO

Purple Heart Day and VA benefits to recipients | VA News

State Veteran Benefits | Purple Heart

Berry Law

The attorneys at Berry Law are dedicated to helping injured Veterans. With extensive experience working with VA disability claims, Berry Law can help you with your disability appeals.

This material is for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship between the Firm and the reader, and does not constitute legal advice. Legal advice must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case, and the contents of this blog are not a substitute for legal counsel.

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