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Veteran’s unclaimed Benefits and How to find it
According to the state department of veterans’ affairs, there are millions of dollars belonging to the veterans that have not been claimed by either the veterans themselves or their families. These monies are called the veteran’s unclaimed benefits. The veterans’ advocacy groups further echo these findings. These groups say that many veterans’ families do not have any idea that these monies exist.
The department of veterans’ affairs provides a wide range of benefits to the veterans of various fields and particular members of their families. Among the benefits are financial assistance, including cash payments to disabled veterans, education, health care, housing, and death benefits.
There are specific criteria to be followed to be eligible to receive the benefits. The applicant must be a veteran or, in some cases, the dependent of a veteran or the survivor. By law, a veteran is defined as “a person who served in active military, naval, or air force and was discharged under honorable conditions.”
Conditions under which veterans can have unclaimed money.
Unclaimed money is funds and assets whose lawful owners cannot be traced. These unclaimed funds are usually turned to the federal government after a specific period, also known as the dormancy period, usually five years.
There are several reasons which may lead to unclaimed funds. For instance, the simple loss of contacts-changing to a new address without informing the financial institution or failing to reply to mailed notices. Assumptions like this can lead to the extension of the dormancy period even on assets you may be aware of, such as mutual fund shares, safe deposit boxes, and pensions from former employers.
Another common reason for unclaimed money is poor estate planning. This is always the case when the family members do not know where all the assets were spread out. They wouldn’t have any way of tracking each company.
Types of veteran’s unclaimed benefits
Though always overlooked, there are several unclaimed benefits that are entitled to veterans. Some of these veteran unclaimed benefits are discussed below:
Veterans are entitled to mortgages to help them get good housing after being discharged from duties. However, if there is no active contact between the authorities and the veterans, the help is reported to the state as unclaimed. To claim the mortgage help, go to the national unclaimed properties database and check the procedure as set out according to your state.
Free Tax Preparation
While in active service, veterans are entitled to tax reliefs which should be refunded after being relieved of active service. The refund checks are always mailed to the last known address. If you move without notifying the IRS, the refund check is returned to IRS deeming it unclaimed.
Most of the policies become dormant or are not serviced after the holder is discharged of active duties and if there is no prompt follow-up on the refund, they are turned over to the state as unclaimed. Veterans’ affairs department owes this money paid as premiums to current or former policyholders. To claim the refund of insurance funds, search the U.S department of veteran’s affairs database for the unclaimed insurance fund.
The state has a provision for burial allowance to its servicemen who died while in service. These allowances should be given to the beneficiaries. However, these allowances are turned to the state as unclaimed if no follow up is done. Any information concerning the claiming procedure should be obtained from the state department of veterans’ affairs.
These are funds that are supposed to support veterans who were disabled while in active service. These funds become unclaimed if there is no contact between the relevant authorities and the beneficiaries for a period of one to five years. Inactivity for five years warrants the state with the authority of keeping the payments as unclaimed. For assistance with claiming the payments, contact the Veteran Benefits Administration, department of veterans’ affairs 1120 Vermont Avenue NW Washington DC, phone (800) 827 1000, to talk to a veteran counselor or visit the website, vba.va.gov.
Unfortunately, as an obligation of the federal government, the veteran’s unclaimed benefits do not show up in the search of state unclaimed assets database.
The procedure of claiming a veteran’s unclaimed benefits
To be considered eligible for most of the veterans’ affairs benefit, an applicant must have an active military, naval, or air service to qualify as a veteran. However, not all services are considered active military service for the purpose of claiming the benefits.
Generally, active service refers to full-time service, apart from active duty for training, as a member of the army, navy, air service, coast guards and Marine Corps; as a commissioned officer for public health service or an authorized officer of National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or their former officer holders.
The determination of a claimant meets the active service requirements may not be a simple process. The claimant and the veterans’ affairs department may have to inspect the applicants’ records of service to affirm whether the claimants’ service falls into one of the many active service categories. Or to determine if an exemption has been made for their services so that it may be considered to be active service for the purpose of veteran’s benefits.
The second factor that the veterans’ affairs department considers after the active service is confirmed is the condition of discharge. This information is available in the service records of the veteran and is easily accessible on demand.
In a nutshell, if you are a first-time applicant for the veteran’s unclaimed benefits, you must produce a copy of the discharge paperwork showing the service dates and the type of discharge you received. Additionally, you can provide the veteran affairs department your full name, branch, social security number, and dates of service.
It is important to note that the paperwork containing this information should be kept in safe places where you and your family members can easily access them. The preferences regarding the burial in the national graveyards and the use of headstone provided by the veterans’ affairs should be recorded and kept with this information.
To find out if you or the veteran you know is eligible for the veterans’ benefits, contact
The Veteran Benefits Administration,
Department of Veteran Affairs,
1120 Vermont Avenue NW.
Washington DC 20421.
Furthermore, you can check for various benefits programs and the listing of local offices through the website of the Veterans Benefits Administration, WWW.VBA.VA.GOV.
Since the search for veteran’s unclaimed benefits does not show up on the state unclaimed benefits database, the team at InLife Claims is available 24/7 to help you with the search and evaluation process of your case.
Our lawyers will make sure that the Veteran Affairs department evaluates your eligibility in accordance with the set federal laws, so you can get the benefits you deserve.
Whether you served as a combat veteran, a reserve member, or a dependent of a veteran, get in touch with us today to start your case evaluation.