Veterans and Taxes

Wednesday Is Veterans Day: SOUTH CAROLINA TAX TIPS FOR VETERANS AND MILITARY PERSONNEL, And Veterans with the Red Cross.





With Veterans Day approaching, the South Carolina Department of Revenue (SCDOR) thanks our veterans and military personnel for their service and wants to remind them of available tax benefits.

"Our veterans, military personnel, and their families deserve to be recognized for the sacrifices they made for us," said SCDOR Director Hartley Powell. "We are committed to helping all veterans and current military personnel understand the state tax benefits available to them." 

Military veterans or military personnel in South Carolina may be eligible for tax breaks in three general areas: 

Income Taxes

Deductions in South Carolina:

Military retirees under the age of 65 can claim state tax deductions of up to $17,500 of military retirement income for 2020. You must have other earned income to claim this deduction. If you have no other earned income, you can claim a deduction of up to $3,000. 

Military retirees 65 and older do not have to have other earned income and can claim a deduction of up to $30,000 of military retirement income for 2020. Any retirement deduction and age 65 and older deductions are reduced by any military retirement deduction taken.

Income excluded from South Carolina Income Tax: 

Any federal tax-exempt pension or compensation provided by the U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs

Combat pay and certain benefits not included in federal taxable income

Retirement income paid by the U.S. government for service in the Reserves or National Guard 

Income received for service in the National Guard or the Reserves for customary annual training, weekend drills, and other inactive duty training is generally exempt

Service pay for non-resident military personnel on active duty in South Carolina who are legal residents of other states

Property Taxes

Visit to learn how to apply for Property Tax exemptions and for detailed information on other exemptions for veterans.

Veterans deemed totally and permanently service-connected disabled qualify for:

A tax exemption on a home and land on the same parcel, up to five acres, that is classified as owner occupied and either titled solely to the veteran or jointly with a spouse

A tax exemption on up to two private passenger vehicles owned or leased by a veteran or jointly with a spouse

Medal of Honor recipients qualify for:

A tax exemption on a home and land up to one acre that is either titled solely to the recipient or jointly with a spouse

A tax exemption on up to two vehicles owned or leased by the recipient

Former prisoners of war (POW) from WWI, WWII, the Korean War or Vietnam War qualify for:

The same tax exemptions granted to Medal of Honor recipients for home and land up to one acre that is classified as owner occupied and either titled solely to the former POW or jointly with a spouse

A tax exemption on up to two private passenger vehicles owned or leased by the former POW or jointly with a spouse 

Surviving spouses for all three types of veterans listed above qualify for tax exemptions on the home if they inherit sole ownership from the deceased spouse. The surviving spouses of POWs and disabled veterans can qualify for exemptions on up to one vehicle solely owned by them.

Other taxes

Check with your local government to learn more about specific tax benefits for veterans in your area.

Combat Zones

Military personnel in a combat zone have 180 days after leaving the combat zone to file their state and federal Income Tax returns. They also can wait until they are out of the combat zone to pay.

When filing by paper or online, military members should indicate that they served in a military combat zone and name the zone.

For more information, visit the SCDOR's website at Connect with the SCDOR on Facebook and Twitter for up-to-date news and announcements.


On the Frontlines Again: Veterans Serve Second Time with Red Cross to Combat Disease and Disaster


During COVID-19 and Back-to-Back Disasters, Veterans Support Communities


This Veterans Day, November 11, 2020 the American Red Cross honors and remembers veterans during this unprecedented time in our nation’s history. The Red Cross is proud to acknowledge U.S. veterans who are choosing, once again, to serve on the front lines. 

Today, U.S. veterans are standing up with the Red Cross to stop the spread of the coronavirus affecting military and veteran communities across the globe. “The Red Cross has supported military and veteran communities for nearly 140 years, including supporting World War I soldiers through the 1918 flu pandemic,” said Allison Taylor, Regional CEO for the Greater Carolinas. “Today, veterans across the country are bringing history full circle by lending a hand to safeguard their communities against COVID-19.”

Veteran volunteers are applying their unique, professional skills in a variety of ways. They are assisting doctors and nurses, granting medical staff more time to address urgent patients. Through the Hero Care Network, they answer emergency calls 24/7 to help separated military families. Veterans are putting needle to thread and sewing thousands of face coverings to deliver to military and veteran hospitals in need. They are deploying and responding to back-to-back disasters. They are conducting virtual workshops to combat feelings of isolation in injured veterans and their caregivers. They deliver care packages to quarantined military families in need.

Over the past year here in the Greater Carolinas, Red Cross volunteers have stepped up to support their military and veteran communities in a number of ways:

-- Over 50 volunteers have provided support for veterans at VA Medical Centers and Clinics

-- Volunteers have sewn 524 face coverings for veterans at the VA Medical Centers and Clinics

-- Three teams of volunteers have provided support to almost 1,500 North Carolina military and veteran families who faced deaths, illnesses and injuries or significant financial crises

-- Volunteers have contacted over 2,900 military and veteran families virtual critical community outreach to military families

-- 235 military families were helped by mental health professionals offering Red Cross in-person and virtual Resiliency workshops

-- Several care packages put together and distributed by volunteers and sent to the Craig Joint Theater Hospital at Bagram Air Base in Afghanistan

-- Over 80% of our Service to the Armed Forces Volunteers are veterans or are family members of veterans.

“This year is unlike any other in our lifetime. The need is so great. It’s pretty humbling to be part of such a great community of fellow veterans who are all willing to step up and support their communities whenever necessary” said David Laws, Director of Service to the Armed Forces in the Greater Carolinas Region.


WHAT YOU CAN DO Many Red Cross volunteers are veterans who continue to support their communities after their active duty service ends. Also, about 6% of Red Cross employees include transitioning military or veterans – from nurses to logisticians, emergency management experts, project managers and preparedness experts, as well as a number of veterans in leadership roles at local Red Cross chapters across the country.

Tens of thousands of Red Cross volunteers also serve in Veterans Administration (VA) and military hospitals across the nation and around the world. These volunteers support such areas as rehabilitation, recreation, administration, and personal services to the men and women who are now cared for each day in these facilities. To learn more about how you can give back in your community this Veterans Day, visit

Click here to watch and share Allison Taylor and David Laws' Veterans Day message:


About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit or, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.


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