Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Benefits

Vocational Rehabilitation Services | Vocational Educational Counseling | Veterans Industry | Applying for Benefits | Forms | Contact Information

The VA's Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Services program provides workforce-related assistance to veterans with service-connected disabilities, as well as vocational counseling to active duty service members and veterans who have recently separated from active duty. Information about vocational counseling and special rehabilitation services is also available to dependents of veterans who meet certain program eligibility requirements.


Vocational Rehabilitation Services

In order to receive services or be Entitled under Chapter 31, a veteran must be determined to have an employment handicap.

Following the determination that a veteran has met Chapter 31 entitlement criteria, a Vocational Rehabilitation counselor will meet with the veteran to jointly develop a plan for a rehabilitation program with a goal typically leading toward employment. In some cases, the plan goal may be related to an independent living need. Whichever plan is developed, it will be designed to provide all of the services and assistance that the veteran requires.

Employment Services: This program offers a variety of services that are designed to help veterans succeed in the workforce. Some of these services include:

  • Assistance in finding employment
  • Job seeking skills training
  • On-the-job training and apprenticeships
  • Vocational training
  • Certification, diploma, and post-secondary training programs

In some cases, a veteran requires additional education or training to become employable. A subsistence allowance is paid each month during training and is based on the rate of attendance (full-time or part-time), the number of dependents, and the type of training.

Independent Living Services: If building a plan that focuses on employment goals isn't an option due to the severity of a veteran's disability or disabilities, counselors can work with the veteran on setting up an Independent Living Plan (ILP). An ILP can incorporate such things as assistive technology, independent living skills training, and connection to community-based support services.

To be eligible for employment services or an ILP, you must file an application for VR&E services.


Vocational Educational Counseling

The Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Service provides vocational educational counseling to servicemembers still on active duty, veterans and certain dependents. Eligible individuals are given assistance in such areas as: interest and aptitude testing; choosing an occupation; setting occupational goals; and locating training and educational programs.

Eligibility for counseling is based upon the individual having eligibility for a VA Education program, such as:

To request VA Form 28-8832, Application for Vocational Educational Counseling, call the VA toll free number at 1-800-827-1000.


Veterans Industry

Veterans Industry is a vocational rehabilitation program that provides temporary and permanent staffing for information technology, manufacturing, warehousing, construction, office support, retail and the services delivery industry. Veterans Industry, also known as Compensated Work Therapy, can be found within VA medical centers in locations across the United States.


Applying for Benefits

You can apply for educational benefits online using the VA's eBenefits site. When you use this site to complete and send an application to VA, your application will be sent directly to the VA office with jurisdiction over your application. Processing will begin immediately, and you will receive a response from the VA office letting you know the status of your application.



If you would like to view and/or print many of the forms that the VA requires to be submitted when applying for or receiving benefits, visit the VA Forms page and use the keyword search to locate Vocational Rehabilitation & Education benefits forms. You will need to have Adobe Acrobat Reader installed on your computer to view most of these forms.

If you experience difficulty reading or interpreting either the form or instructions, please call your local VA office toll free at 1-800-827-1000.


Contact Information

For more information about the Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program, contact your state VR&E office. Listed with your VR&E office contact information will be some state/local vocational rehabilitation and employment web links for other agencies located in your state.

For general information about VA benefits, call 1-800-827-1000. You can also visit the website for the VA office in your state to request more information.

To access a listing of all the VA facilities – including benefit departments and health care clinics/hospitals – located in your state, consult the VA Facilities Directory.