National Veterans Legal Services Program Releases Its 2022-2023 Veterans Benefits Manual
-With Special PACT Act Supplement -
For Immediate Release: January 31, 2023
WASHINGTON – The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) today announced the release of the 2022-2023 edition of its historic Veterans Benefits Manual. This year’s edition also includes a special supplement on the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring Our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act of 2022, a comprehensive bill which addresses a wide range of issues relevant to veterans exposed to toxic substances during their service. The PACT Act supplement is expected to ship in February 2023. NVLSP released the first edition of the Manual in 1991.
“We are pleased to offer the 2022-2023 edition with a special supplement on the PACT Act to help all who advocate on behalf of veterans more easily understand the complex laws governing veterans’ benefits,” said NVLSP Executive Director Paul Wright. “Annually, we provide advice about the changes in veterans law because we appreciate the vital resource that the Veterans Benefits Manual represents for advocates who assist veterans who are wrongfully denied their benefits by the Department of Veterans Affairs.”
The 2022-2023 edition of the Veterans Benefits Manual has been meticulously updated with the important developments in veterans law over the past year. Because of major changes included in the PACT Act, a supplement has been dedicated exclusively to those changes and is included with the purchase of the 2022-2023 Veterans Benefits Manual. The most significant new information in the recent editions of the Manual has been about the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017 (AMA). There is updated information in the 2022-2023 edition of the Manual about how the new modernized review system has been operating in practice. Highlights of the other updates include advocacy essentials such as:
• A new chapter devoted to the types of military department payments to which active duty servicemembers and veterans are entitled, including Combat-Related Special Compensation (CRSC) and Concurrent Retirement and Disability Pay (CRDP) (Chapter 20);
• The important new regulatory presumptions of service connection for diseases now recognized as associated with exposure to toxic particulate matter and emissions from burn pits in Southwest Asia (Section 3.9.2);
• The new exceptions to VA deadlines resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and recent disruptions to VA’s mailing systems (Sections 5.8.6, 5.11.7, 12.8, and 12.9);
• The expansions ordered by the courts to a claimant’s right to file a supplemental claim (Sections 12.5, 12.8, and 14.1.2);
• Updated and expanded descriptions of the types of claims based on clear and unmistakable error (CUE) that have been successful (Section 14.4.1);
• The right to additional months of eligibility for GI Bill educational benefits currently being considered by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (Section 11.2.4);
• Expanded discussion of the categories of surviving spouses entitled to Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) and other VA survivor benefits, even though they remarried after the veteran’s death (Section 18.104.22.168.5);
• Description of the class action settlements opening the door to veterans previously denied an upgrade to a less than honorable discharge to re-apply to the Army, Navy, or Air Force Discharge Review Boards for reconsideration (Sections 21.2 and 21.3);
• Expanded advocacy advice for applying to a Board for Correction of Military Records (Section 21.2);
• Updates to the jurisdiction and workload of the VA’s Pension Management Centers (Section 22.214.171.124); and
• Updated information about appealing medical decisions through the Veterans Health Administration’s Clinical Appeals Process (Section 10.3.4).
The editors of this year’s Manual are Co-Founder and Special Counsel Barton F. Stichman, former Joint Executive Director Ronald B. Abrams, Director of Training and Publications Richard V. Spataro, Director of Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims Litigation Stacy A. Tromble, and Director of Lawyers Serving Warriors® pro bono program of NVLSP Rochelle Bobroff.
To order your printed copy or eBook version of the 2022-2023 edition, go to Veterans Benefits Manual.
The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) is an independent, nonprofit veterans service organization that has served active duty military personnel and veterans since 1981. NVLSP strives to ensure that our nation honors its commitment to its 22 million veterans and active duty personnel by ensuring they have the benefits they have earned through their service to our country. NVLSP has represented veterans in lawsuits that compelled enforcement of the law where the VA or other military services denied benefits to veterans in violation of the law. NVLSP’s success in these lawsuits has resulted in more than $5.4 billion dollars being awarded in disability, death and medical benefits to hundreds of thousands of veterans and their survivors. NVLSP offers training for attorneys and other advocates; connects veterans and active duty personnel with pro bono legal help when seeking disability benefits; publishes the nation’s definitive guide on veteran benefits; and represents and litigates for veterans and their families before the VA, military discharge review agencies and federal courts. For more information go to www.nvlsp.org.
For NVLSP: Patty Briotta, office 202-621-5698 or email: email@example.com