Assistance to veterans and their survivors is an important part of our practice at Geyer Law, and, as we return to work following the Memorial Day weekend, we are reminded of this ironic contrast:
In whatever branch or period a veteran has served, there are benefits available through the government, including education programs, pension programs, job search and training resources, mortgage loans, transportation, and medical assistance.
Juxtaposed to all these positives is the fact that Veterans’ Benefits are among the most misunderstood and under utilized resources in our country.
6 lesser-known important facts about veterans’ benefits:
- Wartime veterans age 65 and older may qualify for a VA pension without being disabled if their countable family income is below a threshold set every year by law. The benefit is means-based, and there is a look-back period to determine if assets have been transferred in the three years prior to filing a claim.
- Servicemen and women who were exposed to pollution sources in the Middle East during the Gulf War and in Afghanistan and Iraq may (under the Burn Pit Exposure Recognition Bill) qualify for benefits without needing to prove they were exposed to toxic chemicals.
- The WOTC (Workers Opportunity Tax Credits) offers business owners money-saving tax credits for hiring veterans.
- The VA Privacy Service safeguards personally identifiable information of veterans and their beneficiaries, protecting them from fraudsters, fake charitable requests, and benefits buyout offers.
- The VA Medical Foster Home program uses private homes in which trained caregivers provide services to residents as an alternative to a nursing home.
- Electronic cognitive devices help veterans who struggle with activities of daily living (ADL). These devices include personal digital assistants (PDAs), smartphones, pocket personal computers (pocket PCs) and other handheld devices, global positioning systems (GPS), reminder watches, pagers with reminder features, and digital voice recorders.
At Rebecca W. Geyer & Associates, we realize that navigating the many benefits available to veterans is discouragingly complicated, and that getting enrolled in the correct program and receiving benefits is often a lengthy process. We’ve made it a primary focus to help veterans and their families get the help they need and deserve.
– by Ronnie of the Rebecca W. Geyer & Associates blog team