VA, Congress slowly circle regulations to combat gaming of the veterans’ pension system


In 2012, the Government Accountability Office found more than 200 financial planning firms and estate law offices enticing veterans or their survivors into costly annuities or irrevocable trusts intended to hide or reallocate their assets so they qualify for VA pensions that the claimants wouldn’t be eligible for otherwise.

Since then, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Congress have been crawling toward actions to stop the abusive practices, which twist the intent of the pension benefit in ways to help some veterans, put others in financial binds, and generate fees or profits or streams of residents for the schemers.

The crawl toward reform continues. VA is still working on a draft rule first released for public comment in January 2015. Final publication of the “Net Worth, Asset Transfers and Income Exclusions for Needs-Based Benefits” rule was expected this past summer. However, it remains “in VA’s internal concurrence process,” said a VA spokesman Wednesday.  VA, Congress slowly circle regulations to combat gaming of the veterans’ pension system

Latest News for Vets

Members of Congress from Virginia say chronic late payments from the Department of Veterans Affairs to doctors are jeopardizing care for the state’s aging veteran population.

Roughly one month ago, Ginnie Mae announced that it was launching an investigation into mortgage lenders that were aggressively targeting .

House lawmakers took the first steps Thursday toward shutting down hundreds of Veterans Affairs facilities through a process similar to military base closure rounds, 

At least eight clinical workers at the Department of Veterans Affairs Community Resource and Referral Center have tested positive for elevated levels of carbon monoxide

The Department of Veterans Affairs is pledging to overhaul its reporting policies for bad medical workers and a group of lawmakers is introducing legislation 

Congress voted Thursday to boost the protection of federal whistleblowers from retaliation, part of a bid to uncover bad behavior at the Department of Veterans Affairs and other government agencies.

The former director of the Tomah VA Medical Center was allowed to resign and given a six-figure settlement after allegations that the hospital administered dangerous doses of painkillers, according to USA Today.

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