MGL c.115 Benefits


Under chapter 115 of Massachusetts General Laws (MGL c 115), the Commonwealth provides a needs-based means-tested program of financial and medical assistance for indigent veterans and their dependents.

Qualifying Veterans and their dependents receive necessary financial assistance for food, shelter, clothing, fuel, and medical care in accordance with a formula that takes into account the number of dependents and income from all sources. Eligible dependents of deceased Veterans are provided with the same benefits as if the Veteran were still living.

If you are a resident of Grafton, Northborough, Shrewsbury, or Westborough, and would like to see if you qualify for public assistance under Chapter 115 benefits, contact us.


To be eligible for veterans' benefits, one must first be a "veteran" or a dependent of a "veteran" as defined by the State of Massachusetts. Visit the Secretary of State website to view more information.

Eligible Dependents

The following categories of persons may qualify as dependents eligible to receive veterans' benefits.

  • Spouse of the veteran.
  • Widow or widower of the veteran.
  • Dependent parent of the veteran.
  • Any person who acted as a parent to the veteran for five years immediately preceding the commencement of the veteran's wartime service.
  • Child of the veteran until his or her 19th birthday.
  • Child of the veteran between 19 years and 23 years of age while the child is attending high school, an institution of higher learning or some other accredited educational institution provided that the applicant is in receipt of benefits under the provisions of MGL c 115.
  • Child of the veteran 19 years of age or older who is mentally or physically unable to support himself or herself and was affected by the disability prior to his or her 18th birthday.
  • Legally adopted children of the veteran.

Who Is Not Eligible

None of the following shall be deemed to be a veteran:

  • Any person, who at the time of entering into the armed forces of the United States, had declared his/her intention to become a subject or citizen of the United States and withdrew his/her intention under the provisions of the act of Congress approved July 9, 1918.
  • Any person who was discharged from the said armed forces on his/her own application or solicitation by reason of his/her being an enemy alien.
  • Any person who has been proved guilty of willful desertion.
  • Any person whose only service in the armed forces of the United States consists of his/her service as a member of the Coast Guard auxiliary or as a temporary member of the Coast Guard Reserve, or both.
  • Any person whose last discharge or release from the armed forces is dishonorable.

How to Apply

Applications for Chapter 115 Public Assistance benefits can be filed at your local CMVD office. Print and complete the MGL c. 115 benefits pre-application workbook (PDF). Below are examples of documents required for your application. Your Veterans Services' Officer will provide you with a complete list of documentation required for your application based on your individual circumstances.


  • DD214 (certificate of discharge)
  • Income verification (pay stubs, award letters or other documents showing monthly income)
  • Shelter verification (rent receipt or mortgage payment)

Establish a Relationship as a Veteran's Dependent

  • Marriage certificate (for spouse or widow/widower of a veteran)
  • Birth certificate or adoption record with name of eligible veteran as parent (for child of a veteran)
  • Death certificate (for widow/widower of a veteran, child of deceased veteran)
  • Birth certificate of veteran with name of parent (for parent of a veteran)
  • Public record or statements from the veteran or other knowledgeable people, showing that the applicant stood in place of a parent to the veteran for five years immediately preceding the veteran's wartime service (for person in place of a parent to a veteran)

For more information, or to set an appointment to begin the application process, contact us.