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Received Award Letter 1 Year Ago Today

still waiting to get paid

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9 replies to this topic

#1 Rob m

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 06:08 AM

One year ago today (26 July, 2011) a big brown envelope from the VA arrived stating I was found to be 80% service connected and would receive $x,xxx per month. I thought great, I need the money and while I am working, it is getting difficult and I could use the financial assistance. I waited a few months and never received anything so I called and was told to be patient, sometimes it takes a few months, so I waited. 3 or 4 more months passed, again no money so I called again and was told the same thing, so I waited. Another 3 or 4 months passed and I called again, Peggy told me she had never seen anything like this and would get to the bottom of it. I called last week, same story, no new information but Peggy did say “ at least your retro is growing larger”, I am beyond tired of the situation.

My advice to all vets who receive the “big brown envelope and letter” do not count on, spend, expect or make any plans for your newly awarded funds until you have a check in hand or deposit into your account. Again, I thought I would have had this long, long ago and I am still waiting with no expectation of anything happening anytime soon.

#2 Berta

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 06:59 AM

This sounds absolutely absurd but it happened to me too-and it took VA about 10 months to pay me but this was not a traditional SC claim retro matter.

I started fighting for my money the very day I got the award letter based on the way VA had worded it.

Do you have a vet rep?

What steps have you taken so far to get your money?

Have you moved or changed bank accounts since getting the award?

Have you IRISed them to get hard copy (I always suggest asking for email or snail mail IRIS responses)

Have you contacted the RO VSM and their director by fax or by phone or by mail?

If you tell me what RO handled your claim I will post their contact numbers.

Have you contacted your Congressman/woman ?

Have you contacted any member of the H VAC?

Have you contacted VA Central Office?

Did "Peggy" say she would put in a formal Inquiry for you?



You gave great advice:

<a name="multiq_286083"> “My advice to all vets who receive the “big brown envelope and letter” do not count on, spend, expect or make any plans for your newly awarded funds until you have a check in hand or deposit into your account.”
In my case, I didn't do all of above but the General Counsel resolved my issue (after a ridiculous ordeal with them too) and I should have never waited so long for my money.
One thing I didn't do was call the 800# as it would have wasted time on problems like this which require pro activity right away.
Worse case scenario here (because this is a VERY unusual problem ) is that some one else got your checks and is drinking martinis on a nice beach somewhere.
I had another serious problem with VA over another type of award money matter ,they didn't want to pay me on ,and when I called the VA Public Affairs Office in Washington DC, and told them what I was planning to do about it, someone definitely helped me right away because they don't want any more bad press. That was a few years ago.

Recently VACO intervened on another matter I had because this time I really got ticked and again VA didnt want me yapping to either the press or to the House Veterans Affairs Committee again. That matter also was swiftly resolved.

I have always tried to be respectful but firm in dealing with VA on errors like this.

But I learned long ago that being a squeaky wheel with the VA can often remove thumbs from butts very fast.

Edited by Berta, 26 July 2012 - 07:03 AM.


#3 Pete53

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 08:07 AM

And yet many here have also been paid before they got an envelop. Berta gave good advice but you really do need to get after them.

#4 StreetWalker

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 08:29 AM

Got my envelope Tuesday and got the retro today.

I did get screwed out of one month of retro due to my Payment starting date being 5/1/11 and we got paid for 5/2011 in 4/2011.

#5 Rob m

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 11:01 AM

Do you have a vet rep? No I do not

What steps have you taken so far to get your money? I have only called the 1-800 number

Have you moved or changed bank accounts since getting the award? No, I have not moved or changed bank accts

Have you IRISed them to get hard copy (I always suggest asking for email or snail mail IRIS responses). I do not know what this is, I need to google it and research what this is and how to request it.

Have you contacted the RO VSM and their director by fax or by phone or by mail? No

If you tell me what RO handled your claim I will post their contact numbers. I orginally submitted my claim to the Atlanta office and they forwarded it to the Jackson Mississippi office.

Have you contacted your Congressman/woman ? No, but I feel like I should. I feel what has happened to me is almost criminal in nature.

Have you contacted any member of the H VAC? I do not know what this is.

Have you contacted VA Central Office? No, only the 1-800 number

Did "Peggy" say she would put in a formal Inquiry for you? No, Peggy only said they would send a message and "get to the bottom of it".

I feel confident that no money has been paid out thus far as I have checked Ebenefits and have not seen a payment. I am going to school part time and my Chapter 33 post 9/11 GI Bill payments always show on Ebenefits so I'm not worried someone else has robbed me.


Thank you for the help

#6 Berta

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 11:38 AM

Go to http://www.va.gov/ and click on the Contact Us button at top right hand side of the VA main page.

The link will take you step by step.

“I orginally submitted my claim to the Atlanta office and they forwarded it to the Jackson Mississippi office. “

Jackson Miss:

Craig Moore Director
1-601-364-7010

Fax: 1-601-364- 7007

VSMC (unknown who their VSCM is) 1-601-364-7044

Atlanta:

Director Al Bochicchio
1-404-929-5818

Fax 1-404-929 5819

VSCM Doug Chapman 1-404-929-5179

These were working numbers a year ago so I hope they still are.

It sounds like ATlanta farmed you out to Jackson and that is where the award was made. But maybe they should have had Atlanta process the retro and never sent them the files back......

hard to now what went wrong and I agree, this is almost criminal when you consider how many vets can hardly get by each day and might get an award letter but might not even have the means to find out where their retro money is.

If the Iris and any other contacts you can make fail, then time to send them a Writ of Mandamus..... we can help with that but I am sure this will get straightened out.

#7 broncovet

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 02:28 PM

Berta's response brings up a great point.

Why is it the VA "hides" VA management phone numbers so we can not fix anything? Its very difficult for us to figure out the VSCM manager name or phone number.

While Im sure they dont want to deal with pesky Veterans...so why dont they just retire to the Bahamas and collect their retirement.
That is why they call it a "job"...yes you do have to take phone calls from people that maybe you would rather not speak to. That does not mean they should be able to get away with ignoring everyone by having an unlisted phone number.

That is insane and its the VA way. No wonder why the backlog is so big...we dont really have a good way to fix errors!

#8 rpowell01

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 06:33 PM

Its obvious why management hides their numbers but if your smart like I was, look through your CFile and see if they mistakenly didn't black out a phone number to the RO. I really felt sorry for them after I called it and they were like "How did you get this number". I told them I know people....

#9 Fco75th25div

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Posted 30 July 2012 - 05:32 PM

Go look in your C-file there should be a judgement or award letter or document in there, copy it and mail it to the VA IG office.
Them will conduct an investigation, and clear it up. Also while u are in The C-file check your deposit or banking info is correct !!
Are check you Service rep's office they should have a copy of the award letter and have them file an inquiry on your behalf, trust me
either source will find the money.....

#10 etcm

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 03:55 PM

One year ago today (26 July, 2011) a big brown envelope from the VA arrived stating I was found to be 80% service connected and would receive $x,xxx per month. I thought great, I need the money and while I am working, it is getting difficult and I could use the financial assistance. I waited a few months and never received anything so I called and was told to be patient, sometimes it takes a few months, so I waited. 3 or 4 more months passed, again no money so I called again and was told the same thing, so I waited. Another 3 or 4 months passed and I called again, Peggy told me she had never seen anything like this and would get to the bottom of it. I called last week, same story, no new information but Peggy did say “ at least your retro is growing larger”, I am beyond tired of the situation.

My advice to all vets who receive the “big brown envelope and letter” do not count on, spend, expect or make any plans for your newly awarded funds until you have a check in hand or deposit into your account. Again, I thought I would have had this long, long ago and I am still waiting with no expectation of anything happening anytime soon.

Did you have an outstanding debt to pay? or did you receive a terminal payment from the service? If so, the VA could be holding back your award until the payment is made. Now retro is a different matter.
Are you saying that you are not receiving the monthly disability payment?
Or only retro payment?
I've corresponded with a lot of vets who are in the 6-month to over a year that are awaiting retro (I am at the 8-month mark myself) but I am a retiree and we are the ones that the VA is holding back on - even after the VA has received the DFAS audit.
The last thing is maybe they are sending the money to some old account they had on record? or maybe they do not have an address, or maybe an address they have is receiving the checks and a person their is glad to receive a monthly contribution.
If all else, now you can contact your elected officials too!