VA Entitlements for Vets Coming Home
Convert this page to a PDF
Posted: Monday, April 23, 2012
by Gary W. Halsey Sr.
All Season Karaoke and D.J.
I wanted to write an article about VA benefits that I found that most Vets either haven't researched or even thought about let alone just plain don't know about. I am a veteran of the Vietnam era, and for years and years, I never even knew what my rights or benefits of a "Honorably Discharged" veteran were until I was talking with a friend about three or four years ago. She was telling me that her dad, who was in the Korean War vet, had submitted claims to the VA for PTSD and other claims that he sustained in the war, and was awarded not only "Free Medical", but was also awarded a benefit check for his "Service Connected" disabilities. I was surprised to hear about this to say the least. So my friend gave her dad's phone number to me, and I called him. He proceded to tell me how to go about retaining a "Service Rep" to represent me, and gave me his service reps phone number.
If you were in a wartime situation or not, and were injured in any way that is "Service Connected", it is important to seek the help of a service agent, and in turn both you and him/her can determine if you have a claim to submit. This can range from PTSD, Agent Orange, Combat inflicted wounds or loss of limbs, hearing impaired due to being around gunfire or loud explosions, these are all claims that you may be qualified for. Once your claims have been submitted by your service agent, then you will be notified by the VA if they want you examined at a VA hospital at the VA's expense, then do it. They may require additional information to evaluate you appropriately, if so contact your service agent, (Let him/her represent you in the best way they see fit, in other words, always be represented by your service agent). This could result in a claim approval for service connected disabilities. Depending on the percentage of disability, will depend upon your benefits.
I was rated at a 30% disability, and was awarded a check for the rest of my life, and free medical benefits. I could have been collecting for my disabilities for the last forty years, but I never knew that I could do this. I invite you to feel free to go research this for yourself. There are various websites offered by the VA that my help you in your research. I wanted to share with all of my fellow vets what I never knew for over 40 years. It is there for you if you should apply. There are other benefits that you need to know about, like burial benefits, possible burial reimbursements from the Federal Government, free headstone, free burial site, open and close, free flag, the list goes on and on. Don't miss out what our VA is doing for our vets!!
My very best to all of my fellow vets, and please feel free to ask any questions you wish, and I will be glad to share this knowledge with you to at least get you headed in the right direction.
This Article has been viewed 527 times. (Not updated in real-time.)Top-level comments on this article: (2 total)
First and last “WELCOME HOME" and “THANK YOU YOUR SERVICE TO OUR COUNTRY"
Veterans’ benefits are a subject near and dear to my heart as I come from a family of Veterans.
What has always amazed me is the fact Veterans know so little about their benefits, benefits they are entitled to whether or not they served in a theater of war.
Vets can apply for their DD214 and DD215’s online , as well as in-service medical reports, at the following link
Vets can also apply online for healthcare benefits and other benefits as well as get information at the following http://www.va.gov/
In addition, following is a link to the 2011 benefit booklet for Veterans http://www.va.gov/opa/publications/benefits_book.asp
Your service rep may not have mentioned it but, as a Veteran that is 30% or more service connected you are also eligible for travel pay to and from your VA appointments (there is a monthly deductible that must be met).
There are a couple statements in your article that may need a little bit of clarification. You stated you would receive a benefit check for the rest of your life and free medical care.
That’s the way it is supposed to work, but in reality legislation can be passed at any time to cut veteran’s benefits and/or increase deductibles and co-pays on VA healthcare.
Example – under President Clinton the medication co-pay was $2.00 which was increased to $8.00 under President Bush. Under President Clinton specialty clinics and in-patient hospitalizations were at no cost, and under President Bush these figures were increased dramatically.
Unless a Veteran’s disability is rated ‘permanent’ there is always the possibility the condition will improve with time and treatment and in that case, disability benefits would no longer be applicable.
There are also benefits available for ‘non-service connected’ disabilities incurred while you were in the military.
Veterans should note that if they were dishonorably discharged from the military that decision can be appealed, and in some cases, reversed making them eligible for benefits.
The most important thing a Veteran should know when they are applying for benefits is don’t give up and remember all service reps are not equal, they should be, but they’re not.
If you don’t feel your service rep is providing you with adequate representation, do not hesitate to get a new rep. It’s not his or her benefits that are stake, it’s your benefits.
Thank you so much for writing your article. Over the years I have written a lot of articles on the subject, but nothing in the past several years and it’s a subject that should be brought to light over and over again.
» left by Gary W. Halsey Sr. from San Jose California 1 year 29 days ago.
Dear Patricia, thank you so much for your response and additional information, it is very valuable to those Vets out there that need this type of assistance. There are still a lot of things that I am learning everyday about these valuable benefits, and I most certainly appreciate your input for our vets as well. Thank you for your wonderful response.
This is great advice! I'm sure many Vets will benefit from it.
It's great to have you back!