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h/t Dave Hampton AZDVS

Good news for veterans receiving VA benefits:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE        

December 20, 2012                                                    

VA, SSA and IRS Cut Red Tape for Veterans and Survivors

New Policy Eliminates Paperwork, Allows More VA Staff to Focus on Eliminating Claims Backlog

WASHINGTON – The Department of Veterans Affairs announced today it is cutting red tape for Veterans by eliminating the need for them to complete an annual Eligibility Verification Report (EVR). VA will implement a new process for confirming eligibility for benefits, and staff that had been responsible for processing the old form will instead focus on eliminating the compensation claims backlog.

Historically, beneficiaries have been required to complete an EVR each year to ensure their pension benefits continued. Under the new initiative, VA will work with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) to verify continued eligibility for pension benefits.

“By working together, we have cut red tape for Veterans and will help ensure these brave men and women get the benefits they have earned and deserve,” said Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki.

VA estimates it would have sent nearly 150,000 EVRs to beneficiaries in January 2013. Eliminating these annual reports reduces the burden on Veterans, their families, and survivors because they will not have to return these routine reports to VA each year in order to avoid suspension of benefits.  It also allows VA to redirect more than 100 employees that usually process EVRs to work on eliminating the claims backlog.

Originally posted to DKos Military Veterans on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:39 AM PST.

Also republished by Military Community Members of Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  One more hurdle out of the way. (21+ / 0-)

    Guns don't kill people. People kill people. Monkeys kill people too, if they have guns.

    by DaNang65 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:39:05 AM PST

  •  Good move. Now about that Disability backlog . . . (10+ / 0-)

    I'm thinking that the VA needs to take draconian measures to eradicate those mountains of paper and billions of bucks being delayed by those who need it the most.

    Those who fought the war in Afghanistan won it. Get them out of Afghanistan NOW . . . It's long past time. Those who want to wage the next war in Afghanistan are condemned to lose it.

    by llbear on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:44:35 AM PST

  •  Yup. One more way to cut benefits. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaNang65

    Since they'll be working with the IRS and Social Security now...

    And since we know that social security NEEDS to be adjusted.

    It's a small step to just run the benefits through social security...

    Call me paranoid, but I do not trust ANY "adjustments" to the VA to be in our interest.  Last time they did a benefit for us, they eliminated Flex time for the G.I. Bill and ensured that vets need to find work when their kids are off from school.

    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:44:40 AM PST

    •  I think you're probably misreading this. (4+ / 0-)

      All it means, imho, is that rather than have us annually report our earnings they'll just take them electronically from the IRS and SS. No problem for anyone who's even close to being on the up and up. Absolutely a convenience for me.

      It will allow the amount now budgeted in money and personnel to completing this dreary annual ritual for our healthcare to be devoted to clearing the pile of claims that are pending.

      Guns don't kill people. People kill people. Monkeys kill people too, if they have guns.

      by DaNang65 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:53:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I HOPE I am. (4+ / 0-)

        I have been burned before and as a result am always extremely worried whenever the VA decides to move things around.

        I hope I'm just being paranoid, but I worry about ramifications whenever it comes to this issue.

        I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

        by detroitmechworks on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:56:40 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I know the feeling, brother. (5+ / 0-)

          I genuinely believe this is just the VA coming into the 21st Century, letting the machines do the routine stuff.

          Guns don't kill people. People kill people. Monkeys kill people too, if they have guns.

          by DaNang65 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:58:32 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Yep and last year due to the electronic thing (0+ / 0-)

            Jack fell through the crack which had me in such an uproar, the President had to demand Florida to look for his
            adjudication of permanent status years ago.  They found it and reported back to the WH and us.  

            It is as you say DaNang about coming into the 21st century but with eyes wide open.  I recommend all veterans to check periodically with the 1 800 number and request their award letter again. Those awarded years ago.  Had I not filed on another disability I would never have known and been in a worst situation had something happened to him before it was corrected.

            We the People have to make a difference and the Change.....Just do it ! Be part of helping us build a veteran community online. United Veterans of America

            by Vetwife on Fri Dec 21, 2012 at 01:55:35 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  zomg! teh cuts! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DaNang65, BOHICA

    obama has gutted the VA!!!

    Please don't dominate the rap, Jack, if you got nothin' new to say - Grateful Dead

    by Cedwyn on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:08:45 AM PST

  •  Soooo (4+ / 0-)

    I've been getting disability from the VA for over a decade, and I've never filed an EVR. No one has ever asked me to do so.

    Time is of no account with great thoughts, which are as fresh to-day as when they first passed through their authors' minds ages ago. - Samuel Smiles

    by moviemeister76 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:13:12 AM PST

    •  They stopped sending me one (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DaNang65, Amber6541

      about 3 years ago. If things change they ask you to self report.

      Hobbs: "How come we play war and not peace?" Calvin: "Too few role models."

      by BOHICA on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:20:02 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The "Eligibility" screening doesn't apply (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BOHICA, moviemeister76, Amber6541, Vetwife

      to compensation or pension benefits, but is used to determine co-pay levels, for example, for those in the lower priority grades when they receive health care.

      I suppose I should have actually written a diary discussing all this, but I thought it was great news and I really need to get out the door so I thought I'd just throw it up there.

      I won't be back for about eight or nine hours, will update the body of the "diary" then.

      Guns don't kill people. People kill people. Monkeys kill people too, if they have guns.

      by DaNang65 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:24:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hmm, headline in today's S.F. Chronicle says (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gordon20024

    My Karma just ran over your Dogma

    by FoundingFatherDAR on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:38:26 AM PST

    •  Hmmmm, reason why decades long (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Amber6541

      How does a Country HONOR It's Fallen, by Their Own 'Sacrifice' in Taking Care of the Brothers and Sisters They Served With!!

      "There is this sense that this is genuine," says Raezer. "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - December 30, 2011 Military Spouse  

      The only Government Branch doing, Federal and States, on a consistent basis, for the Military Families and Military Veterans is the present Executive Administration, unlike the previous admin and their tepub congresses, and that will now continue for four more years, it's Cabinet and those directly around it, the First and Second ladies and more!

      The Country hasn't stood up and demanded it Sacrifice, especially through it's representatives, and sadly that will continue, for over a decade now added to the previous decades of underfunding it's Responsibility the Veterans Administration!

      These present wars haven't been paid for, deficits started rising Before 9/11 as surplus left was quickly depleted and costs of are still added to same as are the long term costs as to the results of these wars once again!

      No Revenues {especially from the wealthy nor their private reagan capitalism economic investments, free market supply side capitalism} = No Sacrifice = No Support = DeJa-vu all over again!!

      USN All Shore '67-'71 GMG3 Vietnam In Country '70-'71

      Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

      by jimstaro on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 03:04:40 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Here's the Link (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    secret38b, Amber6541, DaNang65, Vetwife

    To the VA Press release for those that want to pass it on to any who might be affected, though I'm sure they'll find out soon.

    Vets On FLOTUS and SLOTUS, "Best - Ever": "We haven't had this kind of visibility from the White House—ever." Joyce Raezer - Dec. 30, 2011

    by jimstaro on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 12:51:44 PM PST

    •  Are EVR and Means Test the same things? (0+ / 0-)

      How do I know I'm affected or not?

      If EVR=Means Test, why not use the language the clerks at the VA use when they annually ask me about my annual income?  

      The press release tells me nothing unless the words "means test" are included in the release.

      I was a code breaker in the Army.

      Why do I feel like I have to brush up on my skills to understand a VA press release?

      *Austerity is the opposite of Prosperity*

      by josmndsn on Tue Dec 25, 2012 at 11:54:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I will pass (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Amber6541, DaNang65

    this information along to my fellow veterans-in arms, who no longer care about the news . This into might even cheer a few of them up:-) :-) :-) :-)

    I can see fifty yrs. on this planet, just around the corner. Please GOP, don't mess it up for me.....

    by secret38b on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 01:36:53 PM PST

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