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Legislative Update and AMVETS Survey

Legislative Update:
  • Effective December 1, 2017 there will be a 2% increase in the Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) rates for veterans with service-connected disabilities, and the rates of dependency and indemnity compensation for the survivors of certain disabled veterans. This is the most substantial increase in years.
  • Last week Rep. Maxine Waters and four other original co-sponsors introduced H.R. 4369, Protecting Benefits for Disabled Veterans Act of 2017, which seeks to permanently protect VA’s Individual Unemployability benefit, no matter the age of the veteran.
  • There has been a lot of activity on Capitol Hill related to veterans health care and funding for the Choice program, which is set to run out of money by the end of the year even after receiving an emergency $2.1B infusion late August. AMVETS and other large Veterans Service Organizations are working hard to prevent the dismantling of the VA health care system and we are up against very well-funded opposition. Please read this Wall Street Journal article, with includes a quote from AMVETS’ Executive Director Joe Chenelly, for more insight.
AMVETS Survey:
We want your opinion on the Military Transition process!  We’re running a survey and would love your input. The survey is valid for one week – through Tuesday, November 21.
Thank you, as always for your support of all veterans.


Reject NDAA Cuts to Earned Benefits for Retirees and Tell Congress to Fix the SBP/DIC Offset!

Reject NDAA Cuts to Earned Benefits for Retirees and Tell Congress to Fix the SBP/DIC Offset!

The Senate and House conference committee now negotiating the FY 2018 National Defense Authorization Act is nearing the final stages so it is urgent that you make your voice heard now.

There are two key provisions that could hurt retirees and survivors.

Last year Congress voted to exempt currently serving and retired beneficiaries from increases in TRICARE fees. However, the Senate wants to repeal that exemption, which would mean steep increases in TRICARE fees for everyone (this does not include TRICARE for Life beneficiaries).

We need you to urge your Representatives to reject the Senate’s plan.

Also, there are differing provisions in both the House and Senate versions of the FY 2018 NDAA that deal with the problem of the SBP/DIC offset for military widows/widowers. Unfortunately, neither provision solves the problem.

Instead, we urge the Congress to end the SBP/DIC offset immediately without making survivors pay for it through some other means, such as increasing health care costs.


Action Alert: Congress Wants To Increase TRICARE Fees

Background: The U.S. House and Senate are in the process of finalizing the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018 and we need your help to defeat a dangerous proposal that would increase TRICARE costs for military retirees. This proposal would result in higher TRICARE fees for retirees, including pharmacy copayments, which are already three times higher than they were in 2011; and enrollment costs for certain plans, such as the new “Select” plan, would nearly triple. You’re getting this message because your Representative or one of your Senators has been selected to serve on the conference committee that will decide whether to increase TRICARE Costs for current retirees.
Take Action: Contact your members of Congress and demand that they reject any proposal that would result in TRICARE fee increases for current beneficiaries; and let them know that veterans have paid for their benefits through blood, sweat, and tears many times over.

AMVETS -IRS requirements

IRS is requiring DD214’s       This is the link to the complete IRS Examining Process for Veterans Organizations.       The excerpt below gives inspectors the option of reviewing DD214s.  (01-27-2011) Field Examination Guidelines   Review the following to determine the composition […]