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Law Center Represents Veterans 

Did you know the Indiana University Maurer School of Law has establised a Veterans Disability Law Clinic?  The new clinic is the first of its kind in the state and will operate from the already established Disability Law Clinic.  It provides full representation services for low-income disabled veterans inside of the greater Bloomington area who have already applied for benefits and have been denied.  For more details call 812-855-9666.

     

Same-Sex Veteran Couples Granted Full Benefits

Did you know on June 26, 2015 - The landmark Supreme Court ruling making same-sex marriage legal across the U.S. means LGBT military personnel will have full access to veterans benefits, according to the nation’s largest organization for LGBT service members and veterans?   “Burial rights to veteran home loans, today’s historic Supreme Court decision bringing marriage equality to every state in our great nation means that LGBT military families will finally have access to the full federal veterans benefits they’ve earned,” AMPA President Ashley Broadway-Mack said in a written statement.  The decision will now permit same sex weddings in military chapels in all 50 states. Additionally, the ruling stipulates that states must also recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. 

   

    

    

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

   

Crime To Call Yourself A Veteran

Did you know pretending to be a military veteran to obtain a discount or other benefit not only is considered wrong by most Americans, it also now is a crime in Indiana?   Republican Gov. Mike Pence signed into law March 22, 2016, House Enrolled Act 1179, sponsored by state Rep. Chuck Moseley, D-Portage, making "stolen valor" a misdemeanor crime punishable by a $5,000 fine or up to one year in jail.

    

Welcome Home Bonus Program
Did you know the Welcome Home Bonus package is due to most discharged veterans?  The Veterans' Bonus is a division of the Community and Veterans’ Services Department in Treasurer Deborah B. Goldberg's Administration. It is for veterans who are engaged in or have completed qualified active service since September 11, 2001.  All bonus payments are subject to applicants meeting eligibility requirements, which include a six-month domicile in Massachusetts immediately prior to entry into the armed service and an honorable discharge. The treasury administers the World War II Bonus, Korean Bonus, and Vietnam Bonus, as well as the Welcome Home Bonus. Call Leo Fuller at 781-353-5559 to learn more about the bonus programs.

  

Construction Fees Waived

Did you know veterans who are 100 percent permanently disabled through a service-related disability can have their construction surcharge fee waived?  The construction fees waived must pertain to “any construction, reconstruction, alteration, or improvement designed and undertaken solely to promote accessibility by the disabled veteran to his own living unit,” Ordinance 16-16 states.  The Ordinance is limited to certain states.

   

   

  

   

   

   

   

   

  

    

Benefit May Be Detrimental

Did you know according to reports from many veterans advocate group, a benefit proposed by the government to prevent disabled veterans from spending their retirement years in poverty could disadvantage those injured in older conflicts such as Korea and WWII by clawing back their lifetime payments for pain and suffering?

       

The disparity highlights the challenges faced by the Conservative government as it attempts to address gaps into the New Veterans Charter, a system of compensation that became law in 2006 and which modern-day veterans say leaves them without adequate financial resources or compensation for their suffering.

  

 

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

    

     

Exposed Veterans May Receive RECA Compensation

Did you know since 1990, the Department of Justice has operated a compensation program for eligible veterans who took part as service members in any above-ground atomic testing from 1945 to 1962?  Under the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA) program, on-site participants in the testing can receive one-time payments of $75,000, while miners/ore transporters can get $100,000 apiece. Veterans are eligible for RECA benefits if they were exposed to radiation and subsequently contracted illnesses covered by the program, including lymphomas (other than Hodgkin's Disease) and several varieties of cancer. If an eligible veteran is deceased, the spouse, parents, children and/or grandchildren may be eligible for benefits.

    

Win Free Franchise

Did you know Dream Vacations has just announced its ninth annual Operation Vetrepreneur contest, in which military veterans, educators, first responders and community heroes can enter the business plan contest to win a free travel agency franchise?  In recognition of the contest’s ninth anniversary this year and to pay tribute to the community heroes who have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, in 2020 Operation Vetrepreneur is being expanded to award nine military veterans and community heroes with a free franchise. The contest begins May 25, 2020 and runs through July 31, 2020.   Click here to enter.

Did You Know?

Veteran Population

Did you know the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reports as of June 2021 there are 19 million veterans living in the United States?  The total number includes veterans from World War II, which ended in 1945, Korean War, Vietnam, Gulf War, GWOT and a large number who leave the military each year. Those who have served get a modest set of benefits when they retire and/or separate from the military, including access to VA hospitalsVA pension and disability compensation, home loans and education programs.

    

Choose Your Caregiver

Did you know the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers programs by which veterans can chose a specific caregiver that includes family members?  One program is a self-directed care program currently available in 37 states. It is offered to veterans, of all ages, who are enrolled in the health care system of the VA.  Veterans can choose not only the type of care and services needed, but also the person who will provide the care. This means that the veteran can hire a capable family member, including his or her spouse, sibling, grandchild, or child.

       

   

   

  

  

  

  

  

  

         

Pay A Family Member

Did you know the Comprehensive Assistance Family Caregivers program is given to family members who are taking care of a veteran family member?  The payment comes in the form of a monthly stipend.  To be eligible, the recipient must require supervision and care due to injuries sustained on or after 9/11. With respect to the family caregiver, he or she must at least be 18 years old. Spouse, parent, child, extended family member, or a stepfamily member can be eligible to receive caregiver payments.

       

Mortgage Relief

Did you know the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) offers two new mortgage relief programs to help veterans impacted by the pandemic stay in their homes?  Under the new COVID-19 Refund Modification, veterans could see a significant reduction in their monthly mortgage payments. The VA will work with the mortgage servicer to target a 20% reduction in a veteran’s mortgage payment. The other powerful program veterans can utilize is the VA Partial Claim Payment Program. In this case, the VA will pay a veteran’s overdue mortgage payments and create a second mortgage on the property interest-free.  Act now, because both programs delay veterans from paying the VA back until you either refinance or sell the loan. This program will remain in effect until October 28, 2022. 

              

    

   

   

  

  

  

  

  

            

One Caveat For Presumptive Disabilities

Did you know the VA has agreed to presume certain disabilities are linked to exposure to toxic fumes from burn pits? The VA will now recognize asthma, rhinitis, and sinusitis as diseases presumed to be connected to veterans who served in specific countries at specific times.  Those veterans who served on or after August 2, 1990 in the following countries may have a presumptive service-connection disability:  Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the neutral zone between Iraq and Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, the Arabian Sea, the Red Sea, and the airspace above these locations. In addition, those who served in Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Syria, or Djibouti on or after September 19, 2001, will also have presumptive connections. The one caveat to these conditions is that it must have manifested within 10 years of the veteran’s military service when they were exposed to the toxic fumes.