Change the law on recouping severance pay for veterans
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When military members qualify for and receive severance pay or separation pay they are not informed or properly educated on the fact it is a loan that needs to be repaid. It is then taken out of any VA disability benefits they become entitled to and they don’t find out until they receive their award packet and can go months or years without any sort of payment due to needing to repay the severance pay. This law needs to be changed. My family faces eviction due to being unemployable and having a 90% Disability rating. I have three young children one of which is special needs and am in a chapter 13 bankruptcy. The regional VA office who handles these recoupments said despite having a rapid processing request on a hardship waiver submitted with proof of pending eviction that they have 7-10 days to receive a fax, and 30-45 days to decide if they will even consider let alone accept a payment plan. I signed that dotted line and gave everything I could short of my life for this country and this is how I am repaid? I didn’t feel I was asking much to make payments on a debt I was never even informed I had until I became entitled to disability payments. This law needs to be changed. Service members need to be properly informed and educated on the severance pay they receive, they need to be informed it is a loan that will be repaid by withholding of any disability benefits they become entitled to, and they need to be given the option to decline the severance pay. The VA needs laws forcing them to automatically offer a reasonable payment plan to repay the debt. I feel they should not be allowed to withhold more then 40% of your benefit amount for repayment.
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