Veterans Benefits and Natural Disasters

Q: Can veteran’s benefits be affected by a natural disaster?

California veteran’s disability and benefits attorneys can help veterans understand the many often-untapped resources available to them and their families as a result of their military service. In addition, a skilled benefits attorney can help vets apply for their benefits or can handle an appeal of the unfair denial of a claim for benefits.

While burial and memorial benefits are one of the more commonly known veteran’s benefits, there is an extensive list of veterans benefits available to eligible beneficiaries including:

  • Death pension
  • Dependency and indemnity compensation
  • Disability compensation
  • Employment and training
  • Parents DIC
  • Special monthly compensation
  • Survivor benefits
  • Veteran’s life insurance
  • Veteran’s healthcare.

Of the above, Veteran’s healthcare and Employment and training benefits are two available benefits programs that have been impacted in most parts of Louisiana and Texas in the aftermath of the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. (Additional amendments may be forthcoming so it’s best to verify each program’s current requirements to remain up-to-date.)

In response to the obstacles the unprecedented storm has placed on veterans’ and military members’ ability to access healthcare and medication, and in some cases education, the federal government has reportedly enacted the following program changes in nearly 50 counties in Louisiana and Texas:

Pharmacy Disaster Relief Plan. Eligible veterans can reportedly receive a 14-day emergency prescription refill at any CVS or HEB pharmacy by presenting an active VA prescription bottle or written prescription.

Tricare changes. Emergency prescription refills for Tricare users are reportedly available at any Tricare network pharmacy. In addition, specialty care referral requirements are reportedly waived in some counties.

G.I. Bill Housing Allowance Payments. Housing allowance payments are usually prorated when classes are not in session (i.e. summer/breaks), but the payments will reportedly continue in most cases where the school has been temporarily closed due to Hurricane Harvey.

In addition to the above reported changes, and in response to the forced closure of many outpatient facilities and clinics, numerous mobile vet centers have been deployed to areas impacted by Harvey to help provide needed services.

If you are an active, retired, or disabled service member and need assistance applying for, or appealing a denial of a claim for, disability veteran’s benefits, the experts at Law Firm of Peňa and Bromberg, can help you get the benefits to which you are entitled. Contact us today for a free consultation.

From our offices in Fresno, we’ve been serving veterans and their families in Central Valley, California and throughout the United States since 1984.

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