Military Hiring

HR Resource
May 14, 2012 — 2,483 views  
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Because the economy has suffered dramatically, employers now have the opportunity to benefit from a number of programs aimed at decreasing unemployment. Two of these programs are focused on military hiring. Employers who hire military veterans are now eligible to receive two different tax breaks. The programs offer yet another incentive for employers to hire ex-military individuals, most of whom are very capable due to their intense training.

Returning Heroes Tax Credit

This relatively new tax credit was offered for the first time in November 2011 when President Obama approved this law. Under the law, employers who hire unemployed veterans may claim a credit of up to $5,600 per military employee. Obviously, this bill was designed as an incentive for employers to hire individuals who had been discharged from the military but were unable to find work upon returning home. The credit can significantly assist business owners who are hoping to reduce their tax bill this year.

Wounded Warrior Tax Credit

The Wounded Warrior Tax credit was presented as part of the same law that contained the Returning Heroes Tax Credit, so it was also made available starting in November 2011. With this tax credit, businesses receive $9,600 per disabled employee they hire. Again, this law was designed to offer assistance to veterans who had been wounded in the line of duty but could not find a job when they had been discharged.

Best Practices for HR Staff

If they are aware of these bills, managers or owners may encourage HR professionals to hire more veterans. However, it is still important for HR employees and owners/managers to know that discrimination is something that still occurs often in the workplace. HR professionals who are being too discriminatory -- looking only at military service before hiring an individual -- land themselves on a slippery slope that could lead to other types of discrimination. For this reason, they should be careful. They should also ensure that they are hiring the right people for the job. Hiring a disabled veteran for a job that he or she can't do will often cause more trauma in an already frustrating situation.

Military hiring tax credits offer a good incentive for employers to consider hiring individuals who have previously served in the U.S. armed forces. However, businesses should still be careful to ensure they hire the right person.

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