Compensation and Pension Benefits


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts and its Department of Veterans' Services are pleased to provide an annuity in the amount of $2,000 which is payable biannually on August 1st and February 1st in two installments of $1,000 each. This annuity is given in recognition of the service of our distinguished 100% service-connected disabled veterans and to the parents of distinguished veterans (Gold Star Parents) and the unremarried spouses (Gold Star Wives or Husbands) of distinguished veterans who gave their lives in the service of their country during wartime.

Massachusetts Veterans War Time Bonus

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts provides a bonus to veterans who were domiciled in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry in the armed forces. In case of the death of a veteran, the spouse and children, mother or father, brother or sister or other dependents of the deceased veteran (in that order) are eligible for a bonus.

Widow's Pension

The VA provides pensions to low-income surviving spouses and unmarried children of deceased Veterans with wartime service.

Eligibility: To be eligible, spouses must not have remarried and children must be under age 18, or under age 23 if attending a VA-approved school, or have become permanently incapable of self support because of disability before age 18.

The Veteran must have been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable and must have had 90 days or more of active military service, at least one day of which was during a period of war, or a service-connected disability justifying discharge. Longer periods of service may be required for Veterans who entered active duty on or after Sept. 8, 1980, or Oct. 16, 1981, if an officer. If the Veteran died in service but not in the line of duty, the death pension may be payable if the Veteran completed at least two years of honorable service.

Children who become incapable of self-support because of a disability before age 18 may be eligible for the death pension as long as the condition exists, unless the child marries or the child’s income exceeds the applicable limit.

A surviving spouse may be entitled to a higher income limit if living in a nursing home, in need of the aid and attendance of another person, or permanently housebound.

Payment: The death pension provides a monthly payment to bring an eligible person’s income to a level established by law. The payment is reduced by the annual income from other sources such as Social Security. The payment may be increased if the recipient has unreimbursed medical expenses that can be deducted from countable income.

Additional information can be found in the VA Benefits Handbook

Non-Service Connected Pension

Pension is available for wartime veterans who are permanently and totally disabled from disabilities not related with service. Veterans age 65 or older, do not need to prove permanent and total disability. Pension is also available for surviving spouses and/or children based on income. View the factsheet.

Pension with Aid and Attendance

Veterans who are more seriously disabled may qualify for Aid and Attendance benefits.These are benefits that are paid in addition to the basic pension rate.Widows who are eligible for VA Widow's Pension may also file for Aid and Attendance if they meet the following criteria:
  • Must have honorable military service of at least one day during a period of war.This means you don’t have to have been in war but rather served during a wartime period.
  • Many eligible veterans are unaware that this tax free benefit may help offset the cost of assisted living and nursing homes.
A veteran or widow may be eligible for A&A when applicant:
  • Requires aid of another person to perform personal everyday functions (bathing, feeding, dressing, adjusting prosthetic devices, or protection from hazards of daily environment,-or-
  • Is bedridden, in that disabilities require remaining in bed apart from any course of convalescence or treatment,-or-
  • Is a patient in a nursing home due to mental or physical incapacity,-or-
  • Is blind, or nearly blind (corrected acuity of 5/200 or less, in both eyes, or visual field of five degrees or less)
Maximum monthly Aid & Attendance Pension:
  • Surviving Spouse: $1094/month
  • Well veteran with ill spouse:$1336/month
  • Single veteran:$1703/month
  • Veteran with spouse:$2019/month
  • Two veterans married to each other: $2631/month
*You must subtract all other monthly incomes from any of the amounts above.
*Medical premiums and expenses will be counted by VA to offset some of the incomes.
*Total assets must not exceed $80,000. This does not include your primary home, vehicles, or life insurance policies.

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC)

DIC is a monthly benefit paid to eligible survivors of a:
  • military service member who died while on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training,OR
  • veteran whose death resulted from a service-related injury or disease, OR
  • veteran whose death resulted from a non service-related injury or disease, and who was receiving, or was entitled to receive, VA Compensation for service-connected disability that was rated as totally disabling for at least 10 years immediately before death, OR
  • since the veteran’s release from active duty and for at least five years immediately preceding death, OR
  • for at least one year before death if the veteran was a former prisoner of war who died after September 30, 1999.
View the factsheet.