Returning Veterans, Get the Benefits Your Entitled To

eBenefits.VA.Gov – According to a 2009 study performed by researchers at Harvard Medical School, there are approximately 1.5 million U.S. veterans who went without any form of health insurance in 2008, and of those, an estimated 2,266 suffered preventable deaths due to the lack of health care.

Additionally, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs finds that each night 131,000 of those who have served in the military spend the evening homeless – with people from every generation and war being represented in the statistic.

Lieutenant Commander Bruce C. Brown, a Deputy Chief of the Resource and Performance Management Division of the Seventh Coast Guard District in Miami, FL, refers to realities like these as nothing short of “discouraging.”

“The federal and state governments, and private foundations, have scholarships and military discounts available only to veterans,” Brown writes in a book dedicated to veterans’ entitlements and benefits. “There are billions of dollars in aid available, waiting to be claimed, but the problem is finding and properly applying for these programs.”

Therefore, the importance of making sure returning veterans have a clear knowledge and understanding of the resources available to them is crucial. In addition to the wealth of information that can be found on government Web sites, such as the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the following five descriptions can be used as a educational guide to give military persons a head start to receiving the maximum amount of benefits they are entitled to:

1. One of the main benefits veterans enjoy is access to quality healthcare. This comes at little or no cost through the VA network of hospitals and medical treatment facilities. It is important to be aware that VA healthcare is not just for retirement military members, but depending on various circumstances, you could be eligible for this insurance and receive anywhere from two years to lifetime benefits, depending on how long you served, disability status, combat-related duties and several other factors. eBenefits.VA.Gov

2. As a disabled American veteran you are entitled tomedical, vocational and other benefits.Disability compensation is a monetary benefit paid to veterans who are disabled by an injury or disease that was incurred or aggravated during active military service. These disabilities are considered to be service-connected. Disability compensation varies with the degree of disability and the number of veteran’s dependents, and is paid monthly. Veterans with certain severe disabilities may be eligible for additional special monthly compensation. The benefits are not subject to federal or state income tax.

3. Veterans are entitled to enrolling in a plethora of educational and training programs through GI Bills.These include: Institutes of higher learning, non-college degree programs, on-the-job and apprenticeship training, flight training, distance learning, internet training, correspondence Training, licensing and certification programs, entrepreneurship training, work-study programs, Co-op training, and tuition assistance programs.

4. Another outstanding benefit, is eligibility of a veteran and their family members for a wide variety of scholarships, grants and other financial support options for things like the education programs mentioned above.A search of your state Web site will reveal a wealth of military financial support benefits you may be entitled to, which are either federally or state funded. For example, the state of Florida publishes their veterans’ benefits information at http://www.floridavets.org.

5. The VA is the only federal agency that provides substantial hands-on assistance directly to homeless people and many of America’s homeless citizens are also military veterans of the armed forces.VA’s homeless programs constitute the largest integrated network of homeless assistance programs in the country, offering a wide array of services and initiatives to help veterans recover from homelessness and live as self-sufficiently and independently as possible. These programs strive to offer a continuum of services that include: aggressive outreach to homeless veterans who otherwise would not seek assistance, clinical assessment and referral for treatment of physical and psychiatric disorders, long-term transitional residential assistance, case management and rehabilitation as well as employment assistance and linkage with permanent housing. eBenefits.VA.Gov

For any veteran returning from war, it is essential for him or her to know their service is valued, and the best way to do this is to make sure he or she receives the same privileges as the American’s they defend. By investigating some of the benefits mentioned about, a returning veteran will surely be on the right path to discovering all the opportunities they have available upon a safe return to the United States.

For more information on references regarding benefits available to those returning from war, visit the Atlantic Publishing Group Web site.

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