May 2011


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Lawyers Give Free Help To Veterans

The American Bar Association just announced a Memorial Day initiative to assist veterans nationwide in getting the legal help they need to get their benefits,…


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GI Bill Transferability for Retirees Proposed

Congressman Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) has introduced H.R. 2002. A bill that would expand Post-9/11 GI Bill Transferability to cover those who have been retired due to disability or medical reason and allows retirees to make the transfer within 36 months of their retirement.


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2012 Military Pay and Benefits Update

The House passed the FY2012 Defense Authorization Bill (H.R. 1540) earlier this week. As expected the final version of the House bill calls for a 1.6 percent military pay raise, the same amount the White House requested.


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Gates Puts Pay Cuts on the Table

Secretary Robert Gates has long avoided asking for a reduction in military pay and active duty benefits, but pressure to make $400B in cuts seems to have changed his mind.


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Pat Tillman Scholarship

From Department of Veterans Affairs The Pat Tillman Foundation’s Military Scholars program supports our nation’s active and veteran servicemembers and their families by removing financial…


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VA to Police Hand Washing

Stop laughing; I’m not kidding. The VA recently announced a new IT solution to an old problem – employees not washing hands after using the…




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2012 Retiree COLA Update

If the inflation trend continues the COLA for 2012 military retiree pay could be quite substantial. This will also mean an increase in VA Compensation and Pension programs as well as social security rates.


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Veterans Court Funds Axed By House

The House markup last Friday for governmental spending targeted all agencies for reductions from the 2011 budget. That is, except for the Defense’s budget. Overall,…


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House Moves to Cut Widows Tax

The final mark-up of the House Armed Services Committee’s version of the defense authorization act is a provision to end the “widow’s tax” – otherwise known as the SBP/DIC offset — for 57,000 surviving military spouses.


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House Committee Okays TRICARE Hike

The House Armed Services Committee endorsed key portions of the Obama administration’s plan to begin to raise out-of-pocket costs modestly for some TRICARE beneficiaries, particularly working-age retirees.




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VA Offers Direct Deposit Alternative

The VA (through the Treasury Department) will offer beneficiaries without bank accounts the option to enroll in the Direct Express debit card program with Comerica Bank.



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House Plan Would Block TRICARE Increase

The House of Representatives 2012 defense budget proposal includes provisions which would once more protect military retirees from the Department of Defense’s plan to increase TRICARE premiums and fees.


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New Family Caregiver Program

The Department of Veterans Affairs will soon offer support through the new Family Caregiver Program. The FCP will give eligible post-9/11 Veterans the option to elect to receive their care in a home setting from a primary Family Caregiver.