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  • Can a 100 percent Disabled Veteran Work and Earn an Income?

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    You’ve just been rated 100% disabled by the Veterans Affairs. After the excitement of finally having the rating you deserve wears off, you start asking questions. One of the first questions that you might ask is this: It’s a legitimate question – rare is the Veteran that finds themselves sitting on the couch eating bon-bons … Continue reading

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Laura Urenda

Laura Urenda

Question

On May 31, 2020, I sent the below to the Michigan Governor, my Senator and my Representative.  Perhaps you can help by asking everyone in Michigan to do the same.

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Section 211.7b
THE GENERAL PROPERTY TAX ACT (EXCERPT)
Act 206 of 1893

This is a request to the Senate and House to introduce an update this 127-year-old law.  IT’S TIME!  Currently, a veteran must be 100% disabled in Michigan to benefit from this law.   This makes the benefit very exclusive to a small part of all disabled vets.  According to the VA, Michigan has the 9th lowest vet population in the country, so this change should have minimal effect on property tax revenue.

 I'm asking that the percentage to qualify for this benefit be dropped to be more inclusive for veterans that served us proudly and sacrificed so much.  Their lives have been changed forever. It is very difficult for a disabled vet to make ends meet, even if partially disabled.  This change to the law would greatly help many vets and would validate to many that their service has been recognized and appreciated by the State of Michigan.  

There are currently, 18 states (36%) that have better benefits for tax relief than Michigan. Florida, Indiana, Massachusetts, Utah and Connecticut gives an exemption with only a 10% disability rating. Illinois is at 30%. Oregon at 40%. Colorado, Kansas, North Dakota and Vermont at 50%.  Nevada at 60%. Minnesota at 70%.  Iowa, Georgia, New York, Rhode Island and Wyoming have no defined percentage limit.  MICHIGAN 100% DISABILITY IS REQUIRED FOR THIS BENEFIT. 

According to https://hadit.com/disabled-veterans-property-tax-exemptions-state/
Michigan ranks Ranks #1 in the country as the worst state to live in for veterans. 

Can you live with that?
 

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Of course they can live with that, wouldn't you think that evey state should offer it to all veterans.  The average decent home cost about $150,000 and above but there are limits even on how much could be exempt.  But you are talking about taking money away from them so I don't think much will happen.  In my area they are talking about increasing property tax again within 2 years.

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Well, Michigan has documented and serious budget deficit problems, in no small part because many people moved out of Michigan, especially when GM got out.  They probably want to help, but they have no money.  

Im your neighbor to the South, and Ohio also requires 100 percent for many/most state disability benefits such as property tax relief.  But..there is a solution!!!!!!!

Apply for and get your disability percentage increased.  (If its too late to appeal a lowball decision).   Remember, the Va's "third" favorite thing, above delay and deny, is lowball.  There is a good chance you have been lowballed.  

A number of years ago, there was a study done on Veterans benefits granted by VA in different states.  Yep, Michigan, Illinois, and Ohio were the worst.  This was back when Barack Obama was a senator in Illinois.  He got mad, and Illinois "raised up the ranks" granting more benefits to Illinois Vets.  The VA countered by no longer making public the amounts and percentages awarded for each state.  So, that is no longer tracked, after Obama got elected POTUS, and the "average" amount for each state's Veterans is not available.   

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Laura I applaud your efforts to get a tax exemption benefit increase. But, I suggest you change your methods. Do you belong to a veterans service organization, like VFW or DAV? If you do contact the district or even the state commander and ask that they put it on their annual agenda. Call your state Veterans Commissioner and ask for help on how to get it rolling. You get one or two of these VSO's on board, and you have a chance. Get your local rep on board, especially if they are on the state legislature veterans committee. It would make them look good if it passed. And, right now, it is politically correct to advocate for veterans. Google state benefits  and come up with a few that should have a chance in you state. We do it here in mine every year; sometimes it turns out well. Squeaky wheel, you know.

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