Veterans ID Card: Explained
Discover the current situation around getting a Veterans ID Card and see if you’re eligible.
Discover the current situation around getting a Veterans ID Card and see if you’re eligible.
The HM Armed Forces Veteran ID card was a concept that has been discussed for years.
We cover off all the information that you need to know about the Veteran ID card below.
Back in 2018, there was an announcement stating that a “V” would be marked onto your driving license if you were a veteran.
There has always been a lot of attention around these types of ideas and there are still many passionate debates that you can find online.
The Veteran ID card that is now available was the brain child of the Strategy For Our Veterans plan presented by the Secretary of State for Defence. The plan covers off some really interesting ideas and their main goal for the next 10 years is for Veterans to be at their full potential on civvy street and to receive full support for their needs.
“Better identification of Veterans within and through data can lead to a greater understanding of their needs, trends and geographical distribution.”
The HM Armed Forces Veteran ID card was made available to service personnel leaving the forces as of 18th February 2019. The ID card is a standalone piece that isn’t linked to any other form of identification like your driving license or passport unlike the original announcements before.
The card has information printed onto the front that gives the following information:
This card is roughly the same size as the MOD Form 90 and can be used to prove you served for Queen and country.
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Aside the card being something you can easily pull out of your wallet to prove you’re not a Walt, there are still many other benefits that will become available throughout the next few years.
Healthcare services for veterans will be readily available in the near future offered by the NHS and other healthcare providers that offer their services privately.
Using the card will prove your service and get you the right help that you need.
The details on what those services could be are still not very clear but over time we will find out more and update this section.
If you’ve ever applied for Council housing as a Veteran, you will know that you need to provide evidence of your service and the same goes if you are going to purchase a property using the Council housing discount. Now the cards are introduced, it should make this process much easier.
The Veteran ID card can also be used for job seekers, housing associations and charities to provide proof of your service.
The Defence Discount Service is something that nearly every Veteran I know has applied for.
The service provides discounts to hundreds of high street stores and online shops which is a fantastic product within its own right however we have a feeling that it may be discontinued within the next 5 – 10 years now the HM Forces Veteran ID Card is released.
Much like a student ID card, most shops will simply offer discounts once the card becomes something that most Veterans will carry around. This eliminates the need for businesses to join the DDS and any discounts can be offered within store level.
Please keep in mind that this isn’t a personal attack on the DDS, it’s just a business model that we think won’t be needed once the ID cards become more popular.
The Veteran ID card is designed to reduce waiting times and lower outgoing costs. The amount of paperwork needed when applying for things in the future should be reduced.
As of February 2019, the ID card is only available to service personnel that left the military since December 2018.
For existing Veterans, the card is not yet available but the second it is we will update this article.
There were predictions at the beginning of 2019 for the card to be made available to existing Veterans for the end of the year but we’re looking to push into mid-2020 now.
Taken from TheyWorkForYou
Labour MP Kevan Jones recently asked the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State the following question:
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent estimate has he made of the number of veterans eligible for a Veterans ID card who have yet to receive their Veterans ID card.
To which Conservative MP Leo Docherty replied:
Since December 2018, there have been 43,913 HM Armed Forces Veterans’ Recognition Cards issued to service leavers as part of phase one. Phase two will see the Cards made available to existing veterans. A forecast of the size of the veteran population is available at the following link:
No estimate has been made as to how many of those are likely to apply for a Card.
So for those wondering how many veterans have been issued the Veterans ID Card?
As of 27th January 2022 the answer is just under 44,000.
For perspective, the MOD estimated that in 2021 there are 2.07 million UK armed forces veterans residing in Great Britain.
This is the latest update for the Veterans ID Card:
Last reviewed 15 February 2022
The Veterans’ Recognition Scheme has a two-phase rollout. Phase 1 is complete; with Service leavers receiving a recognition card as part of the discharge process.
Phase 2 is to extend the scheme to existing veterans so that they can more quickly, easily and securely prove they served in the UK Armed Forces so they can access the services they need.
There is a need to future-proof the roll-out and ensure that we are giving ID cards only to those with verified service to guard against fraudulent use as veterans become able to access a wider range of benefits.
In the Veterans’ Strategy Action Plan (2022-2024) the government committed to exploring the secure, digital verification of veterans’ status. This work is underway, and we are currently working with veterans and other stakeholders to ensure any solution meets the needs of all veterans. This will support delivery of the Phase 2 roll out of ID cards. The government is still committed to delivering ID cards but cannot give a timescale for final delivery as this work is in progress.
For an additional insight into how the Government plans to improve their input within the Veteran community, the Strategy For Our Veterans is a great read.
20th June 2022
The MOD released a statement this morning claiming to have an update on “Support For Veterans As Country Marks Armed Forces Week” and as expected, there’s still no news on when existing veterans will receive an ID card.
Media platforms are already sharing the “news” by simply copying and pasting the original article which is of no help to anyone.
The below statement is the ONLY mention to the veterans ID card from the MOD.
This digital verification is also a key step towards delivering Phase 2 of the Veterans ID card roll out. The ID card, which from December 2018 has already automatically been given to any personnel who leave the military, helps veterans access specialist support and services and maintain a tangible link to their career in the forces.
18 November 2022
The latest announcement from the Government and MOD was published in October 2022 and updated in November 2022 to explain every aspect of the current phases for issuing a veterans ID card to ex-forces that left before 2018.
There are currently main 14 points / objectives that they are testing and working on but in all honesty, it doesn’t give any of us an indication of when the Veterans ID Card system will roll out.
It’s essentially detailing each objective they are working on and what they aim to improve for the next phase.
21 July 2023
This announcement doesn’t give us much to go on however it does provide a few key details on the advancement of the Veterans ID Card scheme for 2023.
Whilst it does state that ID cards will start rolling out soon, it doesn’t give us an exact date.
You can read the official statement here: Continued Progress or continue reading the full excerpt below and let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
The OVA led the initial Discovery and Alpha phases, establishing how the Veteran Card can be delivered in the most simple and effective way. The MOD has now taken on its development and will deliver the service. It is a significant technical project and has required highly skilled support from Defence Digital and Government Digital Service (GDS) experts.
The new verification service to support applications will include:
– online applications via GOV.UK
– identity checks using GOV.UK’s new One Login service
– automated service checking to confirm veteran status for most applications using MOD service records databases
– increasing MOD’s secure card printing capacity to deal with the expected applications using a new high-capacity card printing machine
The HM Armed Forces Veteran Card will allow veterans to quickly and easily prove their veteran status where required, thereby granting them simpler access to key support from government, charities, local authorities, and other organisations.
Roll-out will be in phases according to service years to manage the volume of requests and prevent any potential delays resulting from demand exceeding capacity.
With around 1.8 million veterans in the UK, we are focused on building the technology and processes to deal with large volumes of card applications accurately and securely.
Testing started this summer, and we expect cards to become available to veterans later this year. A paper-based application process will also be made available for veterans who are unable to use the online service.
Since December 2018, all Service leavers automatically receive a Veteran Card from the MOD as part of their discharge process and so do not need to apply. The new verification service will address how to replace a lost Veteran Card.
19th November 2023
Beta testing for veteran ID card applications is now underway.
Unfortunately, since it’s release, the system is overwhelmed by the high amount of submissions and the system does crash however we have confirmed from other UK veterans that once the application is submitted and confirmed, it will work.
UPDATE: We have been made aware by those that manage this system, that as suspected this is still in development and as we have seen could not cope with the potentially thousands of applicants. That is why so many of you hit dead ends. That is not to say it hasn’t been useful. They will now see that they have to make improvements, and quickly or this will be a total white elephant and worthless waste of money.
Right folks. For those that are interested. It looks like the Veteran ID cards are starting to get rolled out.
As usual, with GOV.UK it looks like they are rolling these out in batches of 4000 to start with until they can cope with the numbers.
Expect the website to crash regularly and the link not to be available all of the time. Once they hit their allocation of 4000 for the period they are receiving applications, the link will disappear until it is next available. We don’t know what that period of time is at the moment.
What you will need:
1. A mobile phone or laptop/,PC with a camera.
2. Photographic ID – Drivers Licence/Passport.
3. Your service number.
4. Branch of service – Army, Navy, RAF
5. Your full name as it was when you served. This is on your red book if you have it.
6. Residential address.
Make sure you have that ready, it will save time.
The process will be much like any other online process. It will want your details typed in and photos of ID uploaded. It may also ask for a selfie of yourself to compare with the ID uploaded. So, not overly complicated.
To access the online service, check this link regularly – https://veteranid-apply-frontend-dbs-veteranid-prd.apps.ocp2.azure.dso.digital.mod.uk/
During the process, you may be asked to create a GOV.UK login. This requires an email address, and a mobile number.
Or Google search HM Armed Forces Veterans ID card regularly.
As soon as we have more definitive details we will share them.
There will be a postal option, for those that don’t have access to a mobile or computer or a just technophobes. Expect this option to take longer and will most likely involve sending original documents in and I suspect there will be a cost associated with. That isn’t confirmed. This may be something Post Office Counters can deal with in the future.
2.2 million Veterans in the UK so this will take some time to get through. We will try and update you as soon as there are updates or news on this.
Currently, the only way to get an official Veterans ID card issued by the MOD is if you’ve left the forces after December 2018.
If you served in the RAF, Army, Navy or Royal Marines and you left before December 2018, you need to wait until their is a proper process in place.
Unfortunately, it looks like there still isn’t a process for existing veterans which is very disappointing.
We’re not entirely sure on the costs for applying for the ID card just yet. The details are still very murky but as soon as the information becomes available, we will update this section immediately.
We’d love to know your thoughts on the ID card. Let us know your views about any of the following:
In September 2021, we launched the official UK veterans ID card petition.
It ran for 6 months and ended March 2022.
The idea was to raise awareness by getting parliament to discuss this issue but unfortunately, we were unsuccessful with our campaign.
We were so close to the 10,000 signatures that we needed but we didn’t manage to get over the 10k mark.
There’s no need to worry though! The campaign was very successful on social media, with it being shared on Facebook, Instagram, Reddit and Snapchat hundreds of times and we constantly receive comments and emails about this issue now.
The biggest let down of the campaign had to be news outlets though.
News websites decided to jump on the bandwagon of mentioning the Veterans ID Card but they all failed to mention the petition. In fact, most results on Google are just a complete copy of the UK Governments’ statement, with ads. I just wish they’d have included the petition when writing their click-bait articles.
Understandably, this could have helped us cross the line but alas – it was not meant to be.
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