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1. All C&P Exam Locations Now Open
VA has partnered with specialized contract examiners to resume in-person Compensation & Pension (C&P) exams related to disability benefits at their designated contract facilities and not at VA medical facilities. Your local VA Medical Center (VAMC) will still conduct VA medical appointments and testing related to your health care. Specific safety requirements are still in place for Veterans' health. While specialty exams are only performed when it is safe, certain areas have allowed removal of personal protective equipment (PPE) in order to complete the appointment.
2. IRS reopens registration for Economic Impact Payment
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has reopened the registration period for claiming an Economic Impact Payment. Individuals who receive Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Railroad Retirement, or certain Veterans benefits – but didn’t receive the $500 payment per child earlier this year – can still file for the $500 payment.
IRS graphic $500 child tax credit
Federal benefit recipients can use the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool to get a catch-up payment for a qualifying child if:
* Have not already used the Non-Filers tool to provide information about their qualifying child
* Have not filed their 2019 or 2018 tax return
* Social Security, SSI, Railroad Retirement Board beneficiaries, and certain VA recipients who have already used the Non-Filers tool to provide information on children don’t need to take any further action.
The IRS will automatically send a payment in October.
How to Apply:
* Federal benefit recipients can use the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool to get a catch-up payment for a qualifying child. The Non-Filers tool is available on IRS.gov in both English and Spanish. * Eligible individuals can use the tool until Wednesday, Sept. 30 to enter information about their qualifying children to receive a catch-up $500 payment per child.
What to Expect:
Eligible recipients can check the status of their catch-up payment using the Get My Payment tool on IRS.gov. They will also receive another Notice 1444 in the mail after the payment is issued; this notice should be kept with individual tax records. The payment will be issued in October.
Those who received their original Economic Impact Payment by direct deposit will also have any catch-up payment direct deposited to the same account. Others will receive a check.
Anyone who misses the Sept. 30 deadline will need to wait until next year and claim the payment as a credit on their 2020 federal income tax return.
3. VA Caregiver Program Stipend
In the past, I have talked about the VA Caregiver Support Program, which is open to those veterans using a family member as their caregiver, primarily due to the extreme expense of using professional assistance such as assisted living facilities. The VA Caregiver Program provides a badly needed support program for an often overwhelmed "family member" caregiver.
What is a Primary Family Caregiver stipend?
A Primary Family Caregiver stipend is monetary compensation paid to a Primary Family Caregiver for providing personal care services to an eligible Veteran enrolled in the Caregiver Support Program. The stipend benefit is not intended to replace career earnings, and receipt of the stipend payments does not create an employment relationship between VA and the Primary Family Caregiver.
The VA Caregiver Stipend is open to Disabled Veterans with a 70% or higher rating. You can file as of 1 October 2020
Only the designated Primary Family Caregiver of an eligible Veteran is entitled to receive a stipend. There can be only one Primary Family Caregiver designated at a time.
The stipend is a VA enhanced service and is not considered taxable income.
How often do you receive a stipend payment?
The stipend is paid monthly for personal care services that a Primary Family Caregiver provided in the prior month.Once an application is approved, the stipend will be retroactive to the date the application was received at the VAMC.
To apply, you first need to qualify for the Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers Program. You will use VA Form 10-10CG.
You and your “Family Member Caregiver” will need to apply together and participate in an application process to determine if you’re eligible for the Program of Comprehensive Assistance for Family Caregivers. You'll both need to sign and date the application, and answer all questions for your role.
For more information:
The Caregiver support line can provide information on the Caregiver Support Program along with eligibility requirements:• Phone: 1-855-260-3274, Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Eastern Standard Time
• Caregiver website at http://www.caregiver.va.gov
4. VA Partners with OnStar to Combat Veteran Suicide
VA announced its new partnership with OnStar emergency services to improve access to suicide prevention resources for veterans. Veterans in crisis will be able to connect to VA’s Veterans Crisis Line by using the emergency services button in an OnStar-equipped vehicle or OnStar Guardian smartphone app. “The VA-OnStar partnership aims to promote suicide prevention and reduce deaths by suicide by providing additional resources to veterans,” said VA Secretary Robert Wilkie. “This partnership will help veterans access suicide prevention support services and assistance directly and immediately. More than 400 VA suicide prevention coordinators and their teams, located at every VA medical center, connect veterans with care and educate the community about suicide prevention programs and resources daily.”
For more information; https://www.va.gov/opa/pressrel/pressrelease.cfm?id=5502
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