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News

Philip Wolf, founding partner of Wolf & Brown, retires

September 2, 2020

An announcement from Michael J. Brown, attorney and partner:

The Wolf & Brown team wishes our founding partner, Philip Wolf a very happy retirement. Phil has dedicated more than 40 years to passionately serving his clients and making a long-lasting positive impact on many lives. We thank Phil for his leadership and dedication.

Categories: Wolf and Brown News

Author: Michael Brown





New VA Collaboration Helps Blue Water Veterans Claims Process

October 19, 2020

The Department of Veterans Affairs has collaborated with the National Archives and Records Administration to help document ship locations and digitize more than 1,800 Vietnam-era Blue Water Navy ships logs.

According to an article published by Connecting Vets, “The data contained in these ships’ deck logs is critical in determining qualifying ship locations in accordance with the law. For the first time, VA will have each of the ships mapped with precision, providing a comprehensive view of their locations. The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veteran Act of 2019 gave VA the opportunity to consider new and previously submitted Blue Water Navy claims. The legislation was one step in a decades-long fight to guarantee the same benefits to nearly 90,000 Navy veterans who served in the waters offshore of Vietnam that their land and brown-water comrades were already entitled to after potentially being exposed to Agent Orange.”

Relevant pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





Live Call Dedicated to Helping Pennsylvania’s Veterans

October 13, 2020

On Wednesday, October 13 at 4pm Pennsylvania veterans are invited to participate in a live telephone-event hosted by Dr. Paul Lawrence, undersecretary for benefits at the Department of Veterans Affairs. The event will be focused on directly assisting local veterans with benefits, informing them of new programs, and answering any questions they may have.

According to an article published by PennLive.com, “[Programs] include Blue Water Navy benefits that took effect earlier this year, home loan and banking benefits, and efforts to combat veteran suicide and homelessness.”

Veterans who wish to participate can call 833.380.0417.

Relevant pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





Veterans Receving Social Security Benefits Expected to see Cost-of-Living Boost

September 29, 2020

Veterans receiving social security benefits are expecting to see a cost-of-living boost next year with the exact increase expected to be announced in the coming weeks. In 2019, the figure was 1.6 percent and in 2018 it was 2.8 percent.

According to an article published by Military Times, “On Thursday, the Senate unanimously passed legislation to link the two federal payouts, sending it to the White House to become law. President Donald Trump is expected to sign the measure in the next few days. The bill is not controversial and routinely passes Congress each year without opposition. But, under current law, lawmakers must approve linking the two increases in order for veterans to see the pay boost. Efforts to permanently tie the two sets of increases have made little progress in recent years.”

Categories: Social Security Disability, Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





Almost 80% of Burn Pit Claims Denied by VA

September 24, 2020

This week, an agency official announced that 78% of disability claims related to toxic exposure to burn pits have been denied by the Department of Veterans Affairs.

According to an article published by Stripes.com, “Between 2007 and 2020, VA approved disability claims related to burn-pit exposure for 2,828 veterans out of 12,582, according to Laurine Carson, deputy executive director of policy and procedures for VA. The gap in veterans who are approved for benefits drew the ire of lawmakers who argued the VA should give presumptive care for veterans, saying the agency does not have clear guidelines for who gets burn-pit compensation.”

Relevant pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act Introduced

September 21, 2020

Last week, the Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act was introduced into legislation. If passed, the road to disability benefits for veterans with diseases related to burn pit exposure and other battlefield pollutants would be streamlined.

According to an article published by Military.com, the requirement that veterans prove a link between a dozen diseases and exposure to burn pits and other toxins would be removed. “Instead, former service members would only have to provide documentation to the VA that they served at least 15 days in one of 33 countries listed in the proposed legislation.”

Relevant pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Michael Brown





New Bill to Expand Benefits to Veterans with Toxic Exposure

September 15, 2020

This week the introduction of new legislation was announced which, if passed, will provide expanded access to benefits for veterans with illnesses related to toxic exposure.

According to an article published by Radio.com, “The Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act introduced this week has an ambitious aim — cutting through the red tape to switch the burden of proof from the veteran to VA. The legislation would require VA to provide benefits to veterans exposed to hazards during service who have one or more of the dozens of diseases included in the scope of the bill, such as “cancer of any type, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, lymphoma, Granulomatous disease, pulmonary fibrosis, sarcoidosis, asthma diagnosed after service” in the areas covered by the bill and more.”

Relevant pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Michael Brown





VA Secretary Denies Reports of Mail Order Prescription Delays

September 3, 2020

After recent reports were released of significant delays in veterans mail order prescriptions, Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie has responded by saying that these reports are “conspiracy theories” being used to “score political points against the Trump administration”.

According to an article published by MilitaryTimes.com, Wilkie continued by saying, “It’s disappointing to see how comfortable some are with presenting misinformation to advance a political agenda, even when that information has the potential to cause harm to those who served this country…Veterans should never be given reason to doubt a system that continues to work for them at a high level, year after year.”

Relevant Pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





Big Names Call For Reform at Toxic-Exposure Conference

August 27, 2020

This Friday, policy and medical experts, a famous comedian, and a former Department of Veterans Affairs secretary are gathering to discuss toxic exposure among veterans and the reforms that are necessary to provide affected veterans with treatment and resources.

According to an article published by Stars and Stripes, “Hosted by the nonprofit organization Burn Pits 360, the Military Toxic Exposure Conference will be broadcast free through the Facebook page of veteran-owned clothing company Grunt Style in an effort to reach the 3.5 million veterans believed to have been exposed to airborne toxins overseas as well as the VA personnel who serve those veterans and the American public.”

Relevant Pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Matthew Brown





USPS Plans to Halt Cost-Cutting Initiatives in Response to Public Outcry

August 20, 2020

In response to strong opposition from veterans advocacy organizations and the public, the U.S. Postal Service has announced that it will pause on implementing cost-cutting initiatives such as reducing staff hours and removing high-volume mail-processing machines.

According to an article published by MilitaryTimes.com, Postmaster General Louis DeJoy released a statement on Tuesday that said, “To avoid even the appearance of any impact on election mail, I am suspending these initiatives until after the election is concluded. Retail hours at post offices will not change. Mail processing equipment and blue collection boxes will remain where they are. No mail processing facilities will be closed. And we reassert that overtime has, and will continue to be, approved as needed.”

Relevant Pages: Veterans Disability

Categories: Veterans Benefits

Author: Michael Brown