Veterans Identification Card Act of 2015: What is it and how does it affect me?

There are several identification cards a veteran may use to prove they are a veteran of the U.S. military. However, a Veteran ID Card is a simple and secure method of proving veteran status.  

What is a Veteran ID Card? 

A Veteran ID Card (VIC) is a type of photo identification that may be used by a veteran to show their involvement in the military. This may be useful for a veteran who wants to receive discounts offered to veterans by stores, businesses, and restaurants. 

What information is included in a Veteran ID Card? 

The VIC will include: 

  • A picture of the veteran, 
  • Name of the veteran, and 
  • An Identification number.  

The VIC will NOT include: 

  • Any personal identifying information, 
  • Date of birth, and 
  • Social Security Number. 

Who is eligible for a Veteran ID Card? 

Eligibility for a VIC includes: 

  • Having served on active duty, in the Reserves, or in the National Guard, and 
  • Having received an honorable or general discharge (under honorable conditions). [link to discharge page] 

How do I apply for a Veteran ID Card? 

To apply for a VIC a veteran first needs to create or sign-in to their military account through the department of Veterans Affairs (VA). 

To create an account, the following are required: 

  • A Social Security number, 
  • A digital copy of their DD214, DD256, DD257 or NGB22, 
  • A digital copy a current and valid government-issued ID such as a driver’s license, passport, or a state identification card, and 
  • A digital passport photo. 

Are service members who are non-citizens eligible for a Veterans ID Card? 

Service members who are in the military but are not U.S. citizens, might not be able to qualify for a VIC since a Social Security number is required. Instead of a VIC, these service members may be eligible to a Common Access Card (CAC) through the Department of Defense. Service members who might not have a Social Security number should be eligible for a CAC. 

What should I expect after applying? 

After submitting a VIC application, the VA will verify: 

  • The veteran’s discharge status, 
  • The ID submitted (driver's license or passport) is valid, and 
  • The submitted passport photo meets all photo requirements.  

Once eligibility is confirmed, the VA will email the veteran to confirm the status of the application. For applicants who have unknown or uncharacterized discharge, their application may take longer to process. Those requests are brought to the National Personnel Records Center by the VA. Veterans may be requested to provide additional information.  

To the check status of an application, replace a lost VIC, or to request support applying for a VIC visit: [VA’s VIC page] 

What can I NOT use a Veterans ID Card for? 

Service members may not use their VIC to: 

  • Prove eligibility for any federal benefits, 
  • Access military bases or installations, 
  • Access military commissaries or exchanges,  
  • Present as a form of identification at the airport,  
  • Check into a VA hospital,  
  • Show as proof of retirement from Armed Forces, or 
  • Show as proof of wartime service to get a special license plate from the Department of Motor Vehicles.  

Are there other forms of ID instead of a Veterans ID Card to receive discounts from businesses?  

Veterans may use the following IDs instead of a VIC to receive discounts: 

Service members who already have one of these cards no longer need to apply for a VIC, but they may still if they want to.  

Can I get Veteran Designation on my Arizona driver’s license? 

A Veteran designation on an Arizona driver’s license or identification card is available to U.S. military veterans or active-duty service members. If approved, the word “VETERAN” will be printed on the front of the service member's license.  

To apply for a Veteran designation, the initial application should be submitted to any MVD office with one of the following documents to prove status: 

  • Active-duty military identification card; 
  • American Legion card; 
  • Certificate of Honorable Discharge; 
  • Disabled American Veteran card; 
  • Form DD214, 215, 2 (Retired), 2 (Reserve), or DD217 (originals or copies); 
  • Inactive duty card; 
  • Military Officers of America card, 
  • Military Order of the Purple Heart; 
  • Statement of Honorable Service from the Department of Veteran Affairs or Arizona Department of Veteran’s Services; 
  • Veterans Administration Medical card; 
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars card; or 
  • Vietnam Veterans of America card. 

Once the Veteran designation is approved and a new card is issued, replacements may be ordered online at AZMVDNOW.org and it should have the VETERAN designation.  

This website has been prepared for general information purposes only. The information on this website is not legal advice. Legal advice is dependent upon the specific circumstances of each situation. Also, the law may vary from state-to-state or county-to-county, so that some information in this website may not be correct for your situation. Finally, the information contained on this website is not guaranteed to be up to date. Therefore, the information contained in this website cannot replace the advice of competent legal counsel licensed in your jurisdiction.

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