VA Benefits and Services. Briefing for Tribal Veteran Representatives. VA on the Internet. www.va.gov. http://www.facebook.com/VeteransBenefits. http://twitter.com/VAVetBenefits. Or call us. 1-800-827-1000 7:00 a.m. EST to 10:00 p.m. EST. www.ebenefits.va.gov
Tribal Veteran Representatives
VA on the Internet
Or call us
1-800-827-10007:00 a.m. EST to 10:00 p.m. EST
“To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow
and his orphan…”
- Abraham Lincoln -
A service-connected disability is a disease or injury incurred or aggravated while on active duty. The disability does not have to be combat or wartime related.
***By Regulation, the Department of Treasury now requires that federal beneficiaries receive their recurring/monthly benefits electronically.***
Compensation - Sample Rates
S – Spouse C = Child(ren) Rates effective Dec 1, 2011
Compensation - Related Benefits
Compensation Hot TopicsIndividual Unemployability vs. Permanent and Total 100% disabilityPost Traumatic Stress DisorderAgent Orange exposure and related illnesses
Individual UnemployabilityVeteran must meet the scheduler requirements as follows:- One service connected (SC)disability at 60% or- Combined degree of disability at 70% with at least one SC disability rated at 40%and-Be unable to secure or follow a substantially gainful occupation as a result of service-connected disabilities.
Can a veteran work if rated Unemployable (IU)?YesMarginal employment shall not be considered substantially gainful employment. Marginal employment generally shall be deemed to exist when a veteran’s earned annual income does not exceed the amount established by the U.S Department of Commerce, Bureauof the Census, as the poverty threshold for one person.
100% Permanent and Total(P&T)When a veteran is rated P&T, it has been determined that a single or combination of service connected disabilities total 100% anda determination has also been made that no future exams would be necessary, due to the unlikelihood that there would be a future improvement in said disabilities
Can a veteran rated 100% P&T work?Yes.He/she has been rated at 100% disability level with the unlikelihood of improvement. We have not rated the veteran unable to secure and follow substantially gainful employment. If the veteran is able and wishes to work, he or she is free to do so without worry or concern of losing his or her disability.
Ancillary Benefits for Veterans Rated P&T
New PTSD RequirementsVA will now rely on a Veteran’s lay testimony alone to establish occurrence of a stressor related to fear of hostile military or terrorist activity, provided1. A VA psychiatrist or psychologist, or contract equivalent, confirms that the claimed stressor is adequate to support a diagnosis of PTSD2. The claimed stressor is consistent with the places, types, and circumstances of the Veteran’s service3. The Veteran’s symptoms are related to the claimed stressor
We still need:
The three new presumptive conditions are:
Remember!We do not service connect exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides. We do service connect illnesses associated with the exposure
Who Is Eligible?
Family Income Limits (effective December 1, 2011)
If you are a...
Your yearly income must be less than...
Veteran with no dependents
Veteran with a spouse or a child
Veterans with additional children: add $2,093 to the limit for each child)
Housebound veteran with no dependents
Housebound veteran with one dependent
Veteran who needs aid and attendance and has no dependents
Veteran who needs aid and attendance and has one dependent
Note: Some income is not counted toward the yearly limit (for example, welfare benefits, some wages earned by dependent children, and Supplemental Security Income.)
How Much Does VA Pay?
VA pays you the difference between your countable family income and the yearly income limit that describes your situation.
This difference is generally paid in 12 equal monthly payments
rounded down to the nearest dollar.
$10,000 MAPR – $6000 countable income
= $4000.00 IVAP/12 mos. = $333.00/mo.
Note: Certain expenses (i.e., medical expenses, education expenses, or expenses related to the last illness or burial of a dependent) paid by you are taken into consideration when arriving at your countable family income.
= up to $2000.00/yr exclusion
Compensation & PensionTime Limit
Compensation & PensionHow to ApplyVA Forms: 21-526, 21-526b, 21-4138
All Compensation claims are worked at the veteran’s VA Regional Office__________________________All Pension claims are now worked at the VA Pension Maintenance Center in St. Paul, Minnesota
The Life of a ClaimIn Processing Center (IPC)Pre DeterminationRating BoardPost DeterminationAppeals(reopen or notice of disagreement?)
Readjustment Counseling Services
“To care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan.”
Vet Centers serve Veterans and their families by providing a continuum of quality care that adds value for Veterans, families, and communities…..
We welcome home war Veterans with honor by providing readjustment counseling in a caring manner.
Vet Centers understand and appreciate Veterans’ war experiences while assisting them and their family members toward a successful post-war adjustment in or near their community.
Vet Center Outreach
Current conflict Veterans serve as outreach specialists in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
Mobile Vet Centers
Fifty (50) mobile Vet Centers, distributed nationally, are utilized to provide access to returning Veterans via outreach to demobilization sites, active military bases, National Guard, and Reserve locations. The vehicles also support Vet Center services to rural areas geographically distant from VA services.
Vet Center Combat Call Center
Veterans or family members can call a national call-in service, at any time, to talk to another combat Veteran or spouse regarding any readjustment issues related to military service. The person on the other end of the call will be a Veteran or spouse who understands and values the military experience of serving in a combat zone, is trained as a Vet Center counselor, and has knowledge of VA and other resources that may assist the Veteran, spouse, or family in obtaining needed services.
Post-9/11 GI Bill
Tuition and Fees
Monthly Housing Allowance
Books and Supplies Stipend
Yellow Ribbon Program
Training at private institutions
Out of state tuition
Yellow Ribbon Program
Based on school participation
Based on student qualification
Spouse of Veteran (transfer of entitlement)
Dependent children (transfer of entitlement)
Veterans only at 100% level
Transfer of Entitlement
The Marine Gunnery Sergeant John David Fry Scholarship
Montgomery GI Bill—Active Duty (MGIB—AD)
Other Benefit Programs
Visit the official VA education benefits Internet site at:www.gibill.va.gov
Click the “Ask a Question and Find Answers” link to view our Frequently Asked Questions, or ask a question
Call VA at:1-888-GI BILL-1
Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment (VR&E)
VA’s Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment program’s primary function is to help active duty service members and veterans who have service-connected disabilities become suitably employed, maintain employment, or achieve independence in daily living.
Eligibility to Apply
Home Loan Guaranty
VA Home Loan Guaranty
VA Home Loan Guaranty
Steps to a VA Home Loan Guarantee
Find property to buy.
Apply to a mortgage lender for a loan.
Apply for a Certificate of Eligibility.
Obtain a VA appraisal.
Close the loan and move in.
How to Apply
Service Members or Veterans can obtain COE through eBenefits www.ebenefits.va.gov
Ask your lender to apply online through the VA Portal – https://vip.vba.va.gov,
Complete and mail VA Form 26-1880 to:
Atlanta Regional Loan Center Attn: COE, P.O. Box 100034
Atlanta, GA 30031
Eligibility can be restored if VA loan is paid in full and property is no longer owned by Service Member/Veteran.
Visit Loan Guaranty
on the Internet at:
120+ Cemeteries Nationwide
Dependency & Indemnity Compensation (DIC)
Education & Training
Spouse, surviving spouse, and children of a veteran may be entitled toSurvivors’ & Dependents’ Educational Assistance (Chapter 35, U.S. Code)
Home Loan Guaranty
Can help complete claim forms, answer questions, act as a claims representative, assist with employment needs…
Possible State benefits include: property and other tax exemptions, education programs, license tags…
Each State Is Different
Veterans Service Organizationsalso assist veterans in various ways including claims representationExamples:DAV, AmVets, VFW, PVA, VVA,The American Legion, American Red Cross, and many others
VA on the Internet
VA Home Page
VA on Facebook
VA on Twitter
For benefits information
1 (800) 827-1000
Role Play After reading the scenarios, let’s brain storm about what types of things you could look for/ask the veteran. Are there more benefits that the veteran/claimant could be entitled to?
Scenario #1I am an honorably discharged Vietnam Veteran. I served from 09-01-64 to 08-30-68 in the US. Army. I would like to file a claim service connection for Type II Diabetes Mellitus due to Agent Orange Exposure. I would also like to file a claim for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) because of the things I saw and did while in Vietnam. I am also interested in any other benefits I might qualify for. Can you help me?
Things to ask/look forDiabetes claim:Service in Republic of Vietnam (RVN)? DD214? Was the veteran on ground in Vietnam? Does the veteran have a diagnosis of Type II DM? Recent treatment/records? With who?PTSD claim:Diagnosis? Stressor Statement with specifics? Treatment? When? Where? Any combat medals such as Combat Infantry Badge or Combat Action Ribbon or Badge?Other benefits?Pension? war time veteran? Income? How would this be different if this were a Navy vet that served shipboard off the coast of Vietnam?
Scenario #2My mother recently passed away. She was a nurse in Vietnam. Does she qualify for burial benefits? Where can she be buried? Will the VA pay for her burial?
Things to ask/look forHonorable Discharge? Was she in receipt of compensation or pension? Did she pass away from a service connected condition? Did she pass away in a VA facility or enroute for a scheduled VA appt? Have her funeral and burial expenses already been paid for? By whom? Other Benefits? Was she married at the time of her passing? DIC for widower? Death Pension for widower? Home Loan Guaranty for widower? DEA? What if she wanted to be buried in Arlington Natl Cemetery? What if she lived in MT but wanted to be buried in a Natl Cemetery in AZ? What if she was cremated?
Scenario #3\I am a service connected Korean War Veteran. I would like to apply for Individual Unemployability because I can no longer work. I have been looking for jobs but have been unable to find anything full time that I can do. I have accepted a small part time position as an auto parts delivery person, but I only work 3 days a week at the most. Do I qualify?
Scenario #4My spouse passed away last year from complications related to Diabetes. He/she was in the Army and was receiving service connected benefits before he/she died. Do I qualify for any benefits as his/her spouse?
Things to ask/look forHow old are you? Have you remarried? What was the veteran service connected for? Is this a service connected death? If the vet was not service connected for Type II Diabetes Mellitus but served on ground in Vietnam, can it be a service connected death? If VA cannot grant service connected death, does she qualify for Death Pension? Ask; Did the vet serve during a period of war? Income/medical expenses/last illness expenses? Other benefits: Burial benefits? Presidential Memorial Certificate? If VA grants a service connected death and awards DIC:ChampVA, DEA, Commissary privileges, Home Loan Guaranty, Federal Employment preference.
Contact InformationJessica CameronMinority Outreach CoordinatorDepartment of Veterans AffairsVeterans Benefits AdministrationPO Box 188Ft. Harrison, MT [email protected] Eligibility or other Hospital/Healthcare questions, please contact: Ft. Harrison VA Medical Center 406-442-6410and ask for the Patient Business Office