*** Attention ***
Due to recent amendments to the Veterans’ Preference Act, applicants who apply for employment with the Commonwealth after December 28, 2020, will have their eligibility for veterans’ preference reviewed under revised standards. The information below reflects the changes to the Veterans’ Preference Act.
Applicants who have served, or are currently serving, in the armed forces of the United States may be entitled to a hiring preference when applying for jobs with the Commonwealth. The job posting will indicate whether the position is a civil service or non-civil service job, which will affect how veterans’ preference is applied. Please note that veterans’ preference does NOT apply to promotions or internal civil service postings.
Learn more about:
To be eligible for veterans’ preference, an applicant must first meet the definition of “Veteran,” as provided in the
Veterans’ Preference Act, 51 Pa.C.S § 7101.1-7111. Applicants in any of the following categories are considered to be Veterans for the purposes of veterans’ preference:
An individual who has completed service in the armed forces of the United States, including a reserve component or National Guard, has completed their initial contractual military service obligation, and their last discharge or release was under conditions other than “dishonorable”;
An individual in the armed forces of the United States, including a reserve component or National Guard, who has served during a period of war or armed conflict (as determined by the United States Department of Defense), has completed a tour of active duty for purposes other than training, was released from that period of active duty under conditions other than “dishonorable” and continues to serve in a reserve component or National Guard;
An individual in a reserve component or National Guard, who has completed an initial contractual military service obligation and continues to serve; or
An individual who did not complete their initial contractual military service obligation because of a disability discharge under conditions other than “dishonorable”. NOTE: This includes only those individuals whose DD214s state the reason for their discharge as being “Disability.” This is not to be confused with having a US Veterans Administration disability rating.
An active duty member of the armed forces of the United States who is completing a tour of active duty that is three (3) years or more and is within ninety (90) days of an approved discharge or release, as evidenced by documentation of the projected discharge or release from active duty under conditions other than “dishonorable.”
The hiring preference afforded to Veterans under the Veterans’ Preference Act is also extended to Surviving Spouses of a deceased Veteran and Spouses of a Disabled Veteran. The deceased or disabled service member must meet the definition of “Veteran,” as provided in the Veterans’ Preference Act, 51 Pa.C.S § 7101.1-7111. A disability must be classified by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Benefits Administration as a
permanent total disability.
Veterans applying for a civil service appointment via an examination may be eligible for both an examination points preference and an appointment preference.
Examination Points Preference:
Mandatory Appointment Preference:
Please note that veterans' preference does NOT apply to promotions or internal civil service postings.
- Veterans who apply for a non-civil service appointment will be interviewed if they meet the minimum experience and training requirements as well as any “requisite qualifications” that were established for the position. “Requisite qualifications” are additional requirements related to the position including experience, education, academic success, training, certifications, proficiencies, interpersonal and/or other skills necessary for a candidate to successfully perform in the position.
- If after the interview the hiring manger determines that the Veteran meets all established requirements for the position, the Veteran candidate MUST be given a conditional offer of employment.
Please note that veterans’ preference does NOT apply to promotions.
Below is a list of the documentation required to establish eligibility for veterans’ preference. Please note that unless otherwise stated, originals should NOT be submitted, as documents cannot be returned. You may be required to present originals for review if needed to prove authenticity or if copies are unreadable.
Veteran: A photocopy of your DD214, DD215, NGB-22, Statement of Service, or other appropriate military documents which may include a copy of initial military contract to verify length of service commitment.
Surviving Spouses of a Deceased Veteran: Required documentation needed to prove the Veteran-spouse’s eligibility, AND a certified copy (not a photocopy) of the Veteran-spouse’s death certificate, AND proof of marriage, AND a statement the surviving spouse has not remarried.
Spouses of Disabled Veteran: Required documentation needed to prove the Veteran-spouse’s eligibility, AND a current Department of Veterans Affairs letter to the Veteran-spouse verifying permanent total disability, AND proof of marriage, AND a signed statement from the Veteran-spouse agreeing to transfer credit to spouse.
If you need to obtain copies of your military record:
General Services Administration
National Personnel Records Center
Military Personnel Records
9700 Page Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63132-5100
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' eBenefits site enables veterans to download various letters to use for verification purposes.
If you were discharged after 1994 and have registered your documents with the PA Department of Military and Veterans Affairs:
Veterans Service Officer
Department of Military and Veterans Affairs
Fort Indiantown Gap
Annville, PA 17003-5002
Phone: 717.861.8910 or 1.800.547.2838
If you have questions about specific eligibility periods, documents necessary to establish veterans' preference or other related questions, contact:
Office of Administration
513 Finance Building
613 North Street
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Telecommunications Relay Service (TRS): 711 (hearing or speech impaired)