1. Dawn Hazlett

    My aunt has been contacted via text by someone who says they are with the VA and my grandfather had over $70,000 in benefits (I assume accrued benefits) still owing. She needs to provide her bc to receive the money. Does this sound legit? He fell off a roof in Guam and broke his back, and suffered seizures throughout his lifetime. He was diagnosed with dementia around 15 years ago.

    If she receives the money, how will it affect her social security? She is not permitted to make over $14K per year in income. Is this considered income? Is it taxable on her IRS form?

    1. Chris Attig

      Dawn, This sounds suspect – the VA never calls to offer MORE benefits, and attorneys are ethically prohibited from making calls like this.

      It sounds, to me, very much like Pension Poaching. Read this post – and be very careful.


      Some elderly Veterans are eligible, and the benefit is very real and helpful, but there are companies that have figured out ways to sucker vets into parting with 10s of thousands of dollars to get the benefit, WITHOUT providing a comprehensive Elder Care Plan.

      I approached the Office of General Counsel about this last year – offered to help pay for outreach videos and PSAs to stop this activity.

      Their response? “Meh…Veterans will figure it out on their own”.

  2. Brenda

    My Dad passed away over 10 years ago, but we recently found out that he was exposed to/sprayed with Agent Orange in Florida near Eglin Air Force Base in the early to mid ’60s. I was born with a rare vascular defect that baffled military and private doctors for years. It has been a real uphill battle for me with this birth defect. I never would have thought that my Dad had been exposed to Agent Orange during the Vietnam War or that it would have caused my birth defect, but I am not sure now. No one in my family has ANYTHING remotely like this. Does anyone know on this forum if this could be the case? Are there any accrued benefits in my particular case? My Dad was in the Army for 21 years, had a heart attack at 30 that the military did not discover until he was 40. They were able to go back to his flight physicals and see where the heart damage occurred, more than likely while he was fighting in Vietnam. Any words of advice?

    1. Chris Attig


      A lot of folks don’t know that there were several sites in the US where Agent Orange was tested – Florida, Maryland and a couple others come to mind.

      Any Veteran exposed to Agent Orange – either Boots on the Ground in the RVN, or during the Elgin AFB Tests in the late 1960s – should have basic eligibility for disability compensation.

      Whether there are accrued benefits in your dad’s case, or whether a birth defect like the one you describe can be service-connected, are questions you’re going to want to ask an attorney to look into, since we don’t give legal advice on the blog.

      Feel free to use our contact form, or if you want to interview other attorneys, be sure to download our free eBOOK to find out what to ask those attorneys: 8 Things that you Should Know before Hiring an Attorney in your VA Claim.


  3. Martha Maddox

    My name is Martha Maddox and my husband Jerry Mackey Jr. died on 6/12/13. I have been waiting compensation and haven getting the run arounds. Is there anything that can be done about this situation. I have been told that there are accrued benefits sitting there waiting on me also. I really need this money because I am homeless and have no car to gwet to my part time job

    1. Chris Attig

      We don’t give legal advice on the Veterans Law Blog – please use the “Request a Consultation” form on the side of every page on this website to submit your information to us if you’d like us to talk about your VA claim with you.



  4. Thanks for posting! I think the VA believes that every Vet is a malingerer. 🙂

    I don’t give legal advice on the blog; the blog is just a forum for an exchange of information about the VA procedures, changes in the VA, how the rules and regulations work, etc.

    If you want legal advice, I strongly recommend contacting an attorney.



  5. 1993 96 denied ptsd tbi acholic tobacco hearing loss decision had no med records no 211114 no military intell appeal 96 decision they said they lose it just found out it was sent to west vir instead of louisvill were the other denial were made. said I was malingering stupid iq less 70. 2008 they found my stressor 2011 they found my tbi all of which was destroyed by dr hall in 93 and 96 have proof of decision made in 96 may 5 med records were rec on may3 once again did not look at. what they found was stressor tbi documented I was a member of the most intell group in army they destrhoyed my records and until 2005 when judge varo gave me my ssi dis was never looked at again until 2011 awaiting bva docket 0141a1 can prove all abv. American leg rep me very poor jobpresently 70 ptsd 40 tbi 30 headackes 30 parkingson 10 tnn drawing 90 % awaiting tdiu filed feb 2011 would like to burn ther ass up on malpractice and tot claim. last yr dept comm vets aff called asked what I would take no reply vets aff waskington called it dis error ask to be expedited under 38 cfr 20.900 they said no whats your advice lot of money here


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