With respect to the rights of veterans, what part has the supreme court played in codifying or striking down laws that were deemed to be constitutional\unconstitutional at either the state or federal level?

With the scope limited to decisions made on or after 1900.

  • 2
    Can you give some examples of what you have in mind? Off the top of my head, I can't think of any constitutional rights that are specific to veterans. Jun 26, 2022 at 16:04

2 Answers 2


The Supreme Court hasn't really played much part in codifying veterans' rights at the constitutional level, because veterans do not really have any constitutional rights beyond those the rest of the public enjoys. They are entitled to certain benefits and protected from certain types of discrimination, but those rights come from statutory law, not the constitution.

There are lots of cases (e.g., Kisor v. Wilkie, 139 S. Ct. 2400, (2019)) interpreting veterans' statutory rights under those laws, and there are plenty of cases (e.g. Goldman v. Weinberger, 475 U.S. 503, (1986)) addressing the rights of active-duty members of the military, who are subject to all kinds of restrictions that would be unconstitutional if they were applied to civilians.

But generally speaking, there seems to be a general agreement that being a veteran gives you no greater or lesser constitutional rights than the average citizen.

  • I suppose that veterans might have certain due process rights with regards to government bodies that are charged with dealing the affairs of veterans that non-veterans wouldn't have, right?
    – nick012000
    Jun 27, 2022 at 2:34
  • Yes. There are lots of veteran-specific contexts in which constitutional rights might arise, but I haven't been able to find any cases where the Supreme Court actually announced a constitutional rule in such a context. More frequently, veteran's benefits and the like give rise to developments in administrative law.
    – bdb484
    Jun 27, 2022 at 13:31

This page is a list of SCOTUS decisions that relate to veterans (plus one case pending). From this you can probably find cases that are most relevant to your interest. In George v. McDonough, petitioner's might have raised constitutional issues – check here – but w.r.t. the opinion, this was not a constitutional matter (the petition for writ of certiorari does not raise a constitutional issue).

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