Veteran Benefits in Maine
The state of Maine has a rich military history, with more than 300,000 Mainers having been affected by service, whether as a veteran, Guard or Reservist, active duty, or family member. Maine veterans have earned a long list of benefits through their service, numerous organizations in the state are available to help you access them.
If you’re just getting started accessing your VA benefits or need assistance with a claim, a great place to start is the Bureau of Veterans’ Services, and one of its eight field office locations. Highly trained Veteran Service Officers (VSOs) are available to help you for free, and can assist you in enrolling in the VA system, helping you access your earned benefits, filing a claim, obtaining your DD 214, and applying for park passes and licenses. Each month these VSOs submit hundreds of claims and are successful in winning millions of dollars in awards for Maine veterans and their families. You can also access immediate help through the Maine Military Members and Families Assistance Hotline at 1-888-365-9287.
Along with numerous community-based and outpatient VA clinics, the primary VA clinic in the state is the Maine VA Medical Center, also known as the Togus VAMC, which also happens to be the country’s oldest veterans’ facility in the country, opened in the year 1886. Located five miles east of Augusta, Togus VAMC today is a 67-operating bed facility with general medical, surgical, intermediate, and mental health beds, as well as a 100-bed nursing home consisting of 50 skilled and longer-stay beds, and a 50-bed dementia unit. The campus encompasses 500+ acres of buildings and natural woodlands, as well as the 31-acre National Cemetery, the only national cemetery in Maine.
Maine also includes four cemeteries as part of its Maine Veterans' Memorial Cemetery System. One cemetery is located in Caribou, two in Augusta, and one in Springvale. At no charge, the State of Maine will open and close the grave and furnish perpetual care. All plots are of equal size and type, regardless of rank, and selection of the lot in made in the order requests are received. Eligible dependents will be buried adjacent to the plot of the buried veteran.
Veterans in Maine can access a network of volunteers, military-focused organizations, service providers, and other veterans and active duty by registering with and utilizing the Maine Military and Community Network. The goal of this collaborative group is to raise awareness about the challenges service members, veterans, and their families face and to help connect service and family members to resources in their communities. It hosts events, volunteer opportunities, and conferences, and has 10 regional groups located throughout the state that meet regularly at local vet centers. You can get more information by calling 1-888-365-9287.
Veterans looking to enjoy the beautiful Maine national and state parks and trails may be able to benefit from some of the discounts offered at these locations. For Maine’s four National Parks, monuments, scenic trails, or international historic sites, discounts include a free annual pass for current U.S. servicemembers and dependents, or $10 lifetime passes for seniors over the age of 65. Additionally, the state’s Bureau of Parks and Lands offers special veteran’ passes that offer fee exemptions for daily use, parking, and shelter for all 100% disabled veterans and their dependents, or daily use fee exemptions for all veterans. The state also offers an annual Disabled Veterans Controlled Moose Hunt with the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (IF&W) and Smoldering Lake Outfitters to provide permits, individual guides for the hunters, and all equipment for the hunt.
To find out what veterans benefits exist in other states in the U.S. please visit our complete Veterans Benefits by State guide here.
Maine Veterans Benefit for Assisted Living
The Aid and Attendance pension benefit is available to Maine senior veterans and their spouses to help pay for senior care like assisted living, home care, or nursing home care. Here is more information on how the Aid and Attendance benefit helps Maine veterans.
Written By Megan Hammons