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Stop the illegal attachment of disabled veterans benefits
To: Secretary Shinseki and Deputy Assistant Secretary Mark Greenberg
Dear Secretary Shinseki and Deputy Assistant Secretary Greenberg:
I am writing in regards to a failure within our Executive Branch directly involving the ACF and USDVA. The last time this failure occurred the Veterans Administration was eliminated. As the founding reason the USDVA was created I...…
Dear Secretary Shinseki and Deputy Assistant Secretary Greenberg:
I am writing in regards to a failure within our Executive Branch directly involving the ACF and USDVA. The last time this failure occurred the Veterans Administration was eliminated. As the founding reason the USDVA was created I am sure you are familiar with this subject. The subject is the use of VA Compensation or any payments under Title 38 being used for support awards in our state courts.
A simple well worded policy provided by both your agencies and released through the ACF to all states would put an end to this problem. A routine function your agencies do would perform the most invaluable service for our veterans and support for their families.
In 1987 the Supreme Court of the United States ruled on the case Rose v. Rose. The failure to perform apportionments by the previous Veterans Administration was identified. The court ruled the existing language of 38 USC § 211 did not provide sole authority, did not include state courts and only included eligability questions.
"The decisions of the Administrator on any question of law or fact under any law administered by the Veterans' Administration providing benefits for veterans and their dependents or survivors shall be final and conclusive and no other official or any court of the United States shall have power or jurisdiction to review any such decision by an action in the nature of mandamus or otherwise.."
This failure brought disgrace to Congress and to the Executive Branch. Congress had just declared federal authority over the establishment and enforcement of child support through the enactment of the Child Support Enforment Act and creation of the ACF.
From the disgrace and failures of the Veterans Administration for not performing apportionments, Congress responded with extreme magnitude in comparison to previous cases. After Hisquierdo v. Hisquierdo and McCarty v. McCarty only a brief addition to the USC was needed. For veterans and their families Congress responded with the Department of Veteran Affairs Act of 1988 and a complete rewrite of title 38.
Congress addressed the issue of exclusive and sole authority over payments. The language of the new § 511 is inclusive of all courts not just federal. It precludes the states from making any decisions which affect these benefits not just the eligability process. It obligates the USDVA to assert this authority and perform their duties. It obligates the USDVA to act when this authority is disregarded or challenged.
“The Secretary shall decide all questions of law and fact necessary to a decision by the Secretary under a law that affects the provision of benefits by the Secretary to veterans or the dependents or survivors of veterans. Subject to subsection (b), the decision of the Secretary as to any such question shall be final and conclusive and may not be reviewed by any other official or by any court, whether by an action in the nature of mandamus or otherwise.”
The US Congress also responded to the dissenting and self proclaimed “distained” opinion of Justice O’Conner. In her opinion of the previously § 3101, the law should not have been written so iron clad to provide the level of protection determined. The response of Congress was to not make one change to the wording when renumbered to § 5301. This wording has gone unchanged for over 20 years. In not so subtle words Congress voiced their distain for the opinion as well.
Today this problem has returned. State courts are again ignoring the federal authority and using Title 38 payments in the calculation of support awards. This issue is rooted in the creation of both the ACF and USDVA. Because policy has not been provided to the states our veterans and their dependents are suffering. The reports on veteran suicide by mulitple state Departments of Health and Human Services describe the rates as epidemic. Divorce and break down of the family is the constant variable in all of these cases.
Providing a policy excluding Title 38 funds from ANY use other than the USDVA process of Apportionment is gravely needed. Providing policy through the ACF to their state agencies is one of the most routine functions of the ACF. In turn this policy is immediately received and provided infomationally to all branches of the state government. This ensures the quickest compliance with the least amount of discord. In closing, I leave you with the quote from George Santayana.
"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it."
14,406 people signed the petition
Today, the money the VA is sending for a disabled, pregnant, Army veteran and her 11 year old daughter is being taken away and given to an ex-spouse. Because of this the ex-spouse can't qualify for food stamps and the disabled veteran can't take care of her daughter. The only people who win in this situation are the lawyers.
The last time this failure of our federal Veterans agency happened, we FIRED THEM!!!
A veteran took the case Rose v Rose to the US Supreme in 1987.
The Supreme Court ruled, the Veterans Administration was a FAILURE and that the law doesn't even "OBLIGATED" the VA to do its job!
This is why in 1988 the US Congress got rid of the Veterans Administration. They created the USDVA with the Department of Veterans Affairs Act. The lawyers have found a new way to confuse the courts and transfer a veteran's compensation into their own pockets.
To fully understand what is going on please read the following or visit our Official Facebook page at:
Today, the lawyers are trying to outwit the law. They are preying on a tragic time in a soldier's life when they return from war, injured and changed for life. A time when this immense stress causes so much pain for the family that 90% will end in divorce. The lawyers will feed on the hurt feelings and scare spouses into becoming their clients. They pretend to offer comfort by saying, I can get you some of the money that is suppose to care for a disabled veteran. NOT because it's good for the ex-spouse but because it's good for the lawyer.
The lawyer doesn't tell their client, as soon as they are legally divorced from the veteran the reason the money from the VA for them stops, is because they switch to being under the public systems and immediately become eligible for any and all 1600 public assistance programs. Many programs designed in mind to help these ex-spouses of veterans and work as a transition assistance program.
These ex-spouses use to have the difficult job of taking care of a hurt veteran. There is no fault here, it doesn't matter if they were fired or quit. The ex-spouses immediately become eligible for monthly Food Stamps ($250), HUD ($650 and up), College travel and expense stipend ($986) and many other monthly paying programs. They also automatically receive annual grants that more than pay all tuition, book and fees. The Pell Grant pays $5,700 a year for 4 years of college. In many states they provide a tuition waiver and the Pell Grant is refunded to them as cash.
The lawyers don't tell them about these resources. They tell these ex-spouses who are upset, confused and afraid of being on their own; I can probably get you about $1,000 a month. They coach them how to testify in court. The lawyers instruct them, don't tell the court the veteran is suffering from a condition; tell the court the veteran is intentionally inflicting their symptoms, injuries and disease on you. They demonize these veterans for one purpose. To convince a judge to change the legal definition and status of means-tested, protected veteran's compensation into a form of taxable, garnishable spousal support and considered "income". They don't tell these ex-spouses, by getting this money as "income" it will immediately disqualify them from the programs just mentioned.
The lawyer's main goal here isn't to get money for their client. If so, they would be fighting to prevent this from happening. The best interest of the client is to be able to access these transition services and get over $2,000 month of tax free protected funds and not the $1,000 of spousal support income they have to file taxes on. No, the lawyer wants the ex-spouse to get the spousal support because once that legal change happens they can force that money to be used to pay their fees. They bribe the clients with statements like this; "I won't charge you for my fees, I'll get the judge to award the fees from the veteran".
Help us save our fallen heroes! Help us protect our veterans AND their families!
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Update #2Posted by Peter Barclay (Campaign Leader) on Dec 2, 2012
I want to thank everyone for helping put an end the schemes to rob our veterans and their families during the intense tragedy of their lives when a soldier comes home injured. I've received a lot of feedback from people one good ways to help explain this as the confusion is what enables this to happen. I want to invite you all back to see the new developments and intern hope you invite your friends and family to join us in helping our soldiers and their families. Please take a moment to use...…
I want to thank everyone for helping put an end the schemes to rob our veterans and their families during the intense tragedy of their lives when a soldier comes home injured. I've received a lot of feedback from people one good ways to help explain this as the confusion is what enables this to happen. I want to invite you all back to see the new developments and intern hope you invite your friends and family to join us in helping our soldiers and their families. Please take a moment to use the invite link and to also share this on your pages and in the groups to which you belong. Come see us on our official Facebook page www.facebook.com/protectveteranbenefits
Thank you again for all your help and support
Update #1Posted by Peter Barclay (Campaign Leader) on Oct 20, 2012
Thank you to everyone who has signed the petition. The request for the US Supreme Court to hear this case was denied. This doesn't mean we lost it just means they are very busy and can't hear every case. Last year they got 10,000 petitions and only had time to hear 74 cases. It's like saying they chose to hear a murder case over a case of robbery. In order to get this accomplished an administrative solution has been devised to put a stop to it. However, the situation has now changed as the...…
Thank you to everyone who has signed the petition. The request for the US Supreme Court to hear this case was denied. This doesn't mean we lost it just means they are very busy and can't hear every case. Last year they got 10,000 petitions and only had time to hear 74 cases. It's like saying they chose to hear a murder case over a case of robbery. In order to get this accomplished an administrative solution has been devised to put a stop to it. However, the situation has now changed as the states are now taking this denial as the Supreme Court is too busy from stopping them from robbing our veterans. They are on a robbing spree doing this to all veterans as they see it as a new revenue stream. Please help spread the word to all your friends and help get the signatures we need to stop this.
Today, the money the VA is sending for a disabled, pregnant, Army veteran and her 11 year old daughter is being taken away and given to an ex-spouse. While this work capable ex-spouse is sitting at home living with their mother, this disabled veteran is having to go back to work and school in order to try and take care of her family. She has to do this without her VA Compensation payment. Now, contempt of court charges were filed because she can only hand over $934 of the monthly $1,000 spousal support order.
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