On November 21, 2011, the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 was signed into law. The new law provides an expanded work opportunity tax credit to businesses that hire eligible unemployed veterans and for the first time also makes part of the credit available to tax-exempt organizations. Businesses can claim the credit as part of the general business credit and tax-exempt organizations can claim it against their payroll tax liability. The credit is available for eligible unemployed veterans who begin work on or after November 22, 2011, and before January 1, 2013.
Also included in this new law is the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) for unemployed Veterans. The Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and the Department of Labor (DoL) are working together to roll out this new program on July 1, 2012. Specific eligibility requirements apply. Moreover, the program is only limited to 45,000 participants for the 2012 fiscal year (and to 54,000 participants between October 1, 2012 and March 31, 2014).