Congress Passes 1.7% COLA for Veterans
Veterans benefits is an important issue followed closely by Bergmann & Moore. We are pleased to share welcome news for our Veterans and families concerned about the annual Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) for disability benefits paid by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Acting immediately upon returning to Washington after the election, today the United States Senate passed the annual benefits increase of 1.7 percent for 2013. The Senate sent the legislation to the White House, where President Barack Obama is expected to sign it soon. On September 27, 2011, Bergmann & Moore alerted Veterans and reporters about how one or more Senators were blocking what, until two months ago, was a bi-partisan, no-nonsense bill. The secret hold was lifted today, and Senators quickly passed the bill.
The bill appears to have passed in time for VA to add the increases to benefits effective for 2013. If the COLA bill was delayed, then Veterans and dependents may have had to wait until February 2013 or later to see the increase.
For Veterans and dependents receiving VA disability benefits, this means and increase of $47 per month for a single Veteran rated at 100%, or an annual increase of $564. Expect VA to publish the exact amounts at VA’s web site in the next few months.
Let us all hope the a few bad actors in the Senate don’t ever disrupt or threaten to disrupt Veterans’ hard-earned disability benefits again.