Veterans have other options for proof of service

Here is a sample of the form veterans will receive after completing the registration process.

Veterans can now register online for an identification letter to take advantage of benefits offered by merchants and other organizations.

New cards will be issued by Veterans Affairs in the near future but this is one of a couple options for veterans to use in the meantime.

The rollout of a new card later this month is the result of legislation Congress passed in 2015 to make it easier for veterans to receive things such as discounts at stores and restaurants.

These new cards allow individuals that did not retire nor have a medical identification card to have something to verify their service rather than their discharge papers. Most organizations will accept the form DD214 as proof of service but  rather than carrying around the valuable paper that contains personal information regarding one’s service, the new card can be carried anywhere and used for the same benefits.

The card can be downloaded after veterans complete the online identification and verification process here https://www.ebenefits.va.gov/ebenefits/homepage. It is designed to be folded in half and laminated.

Service has to be verified through the process to receive the card that will have a Department of Defense number assigned to it. The website also has information on other benefits veterans are entitled to use but the card cannot be used to enter military facilities or military stores.

“I’ve had a ton of veterans ask about a card that they could use to take advantage of the benefits offered by businesses,” Veterans Affairs Officer Bob Johnson said today. “There was no way they could prove they were a veteran unless they had their DD214.”

Some retailers have automatic discounts to honor veterans but require verification from veterans before allowing the discounts or other benefits. “If it’s Veterans Day or something and say they go into Applebees for a free meal, now they can have a card to prove they are veterans,” Johnson said.

Here is a clarification on the cards being issued.

Veteran ID Cards: What your options are now and in the future

5 Responses to Veterans have other options for proof of service

  1. Kelly Wiseman November 21, 2017 at 10:57 pm #

    Thank you Mr. Johnson, for your service to our veterans. My husband has shown his American Legion card or his Air Force ball cap with a smile, but this card will certainly be a welcome addition.

  2. Tom M November 22, 2017 at 9:01 am #

    For Vets interested in this ID Card I just spoke with the VA. This program (ID Card) will be available as of 28 Nov 2017. Not at eBenefits but at Vets.gov

    SFC Thomas P. McBeth
    U.S. Army Retired

  3. Bob Johnson November 22, 2017 at 9:38 am #

    I have already printed my card. I did it yesterday from ebenefits website. I am not sure who you spoke with but the cards are available now.

    • Steve Narova November 23, 2017 at 2:34 am #

      I think there’s some confusion. There are actually two different “cards”. One (paper) you can print out yourself from the eBenefits website if you are properly registered. I think that’s the one you’re talking about. The second is a hard card that was authorized by Congress in 2015 and will hopefully be available shortly.

  4. Bob Johnson November 22, 2017 at 10:04 am #

    I have just talked with ebenefits people and Tom M. you are correct it has been pushed back to Nov 28 2017. I was informed that If you are already in the VA healthcare system you can print a card up from ebenefits website. Those whose are not on active duty, retired or in the healthcare system will have to wait un NOV. 28 2017 because technical difficulties on their website.