A&A success...we think.

Discussion in 'Share Your Personal Experience' started by gsd1038, Mar 13, 2010.

  1. gsd1038

    gsd1038 Newbie

    Thanks again Debbie...we really appreciate your help here.
    My brother has tried several times to contact the individual you gave us, but she has yet to return his call...
     
  2. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member

    I know she had guest in for almost a 2 week stay from another country, and may be behind on getting caught up. I'm sorry he hasn't connected with her yet. If this continues please let me know.
     
  3. adkkev

    adkkev Newbie

    Thanks Debbie ...
     
  4. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member

    I have sent an email and hope that will be of assistance. I'm sorry there has been a challenge in connecting.
     
  5. gsd1038

    gsd1038 Newbie

    Thanks Debbie...appreciate the work you do so very much!
     
  6. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member

    Thank you and you're welcome.
     
  7. adkkev

    adkkev Newbie

    A note for those who fill out form 21-601 for accrued benefits of a deceased veteran (to be paid to a beneficiary) ...

    Once the veteran passes, that VA claim is closed. If you need to apply for any accrued benefits (in our case it's A&A benefits that have been held pending the appointment of a fiduciary) by the use of form 21-601, this opens up a NEW claim. Since the original claim for the deceased veteran has been closed, you will need to resubmit ALL of the medical bills that you were using to support the deceased veteran's A&A claim with the form 21-601. This would go under section 12a of from 21-601. The creation of a spreadsheet of the expenses was recommended to us.

    In our case this means going back to July 2009 when our application was first accepted by the VA until the time of our Mom's passing in September 2010.

    The VA certainly doesn't make it easy!!

    A special thanks to Patty Servaes of Elder Benefits Consulting (thanks to Debbie for referring us to her).
     
  8. gsd1038

    gsd1038 Newbie

    So we submitted the 21-601 form to the St. Petersburg office as were told to (with associated repeat documentation) in October 2010 via certified mail (we have the name of the signing individual), and have yet to hear anything from them to date. Should we call that office to ask status? I have no claim # yet for this..and am unsure of what to do at this stage. (this filing is for the back $$ owed because our mother passed away before the fiduciary process was completed). We are now in month 16 of the entire A&A process without final disposition. Any ideas as to next steps? Thx...
     
  9. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member

    Yes, you need to call the VA and ask about this. Truthfully should have done so already as this usually takes no more than a year.

    Please let us know what you find out.
     
  10. gsd1038

    gsd1038 Newbie

    The saga continues. I called the VA office today where we were told to send the Accrued Benefits paperwork (St Petersburg), spoke to a very nice woman, and she informed me that it was indeed recvd there, but that THEY subsquently sent the paperwork up to Philadelphia for processing. ?? And, all she could tell me was that it was 'in development phase', and that 'philadelphia was looking for more information'. Well, to date, we have recv'd nothing from the VA stating that they even HAVE this paperwork, nor have they asked us for any information....so this is very confusing to me. She did complete an inquiry form for me, and sent it along to Philadelphia, asking them to send the request for info to me. I really can't imagine what they could possibly need, as remember, my mother had been receiving A&A for 6 months before she passed away, and all we are trying to do is recover the accrued benefits owed my dad (her beneficiary)since the fiduciary process was not completed before she died.

    To all that are going thru the Accrued benefit process after a loved one passes on, as my brother stated in an earlier post, the VA closes your original A&A claim, and starts a brand new claim for the accrued $$. I was told by them today that it's a first-come, first-serve basis..and they get to the case "when it comes up in the pile". It doesn't matter that you have been receiving benefits for X number of months. It is like you are a brand new customer. We are in month 18 of dealing with the VA from the very start of the initial application process, and we do know that our initial case was reviewed in front of a Senate committee, courtesy of Senator Gillibrand of New York, because it had been handled so poorly. I'll keep you posted as we go back to her with this next chapter.
     
  11. gsd1038

    gsd1038 Newbie

    :D So finally, we have reached a conclusion to the 19 month saga! After speaking two more times to the VA between late November and early January 2011 and receiving no status other than 'in development phase', I once again found myself contacting my state senator. In my plea, I included an entire timeline of the sequence of events from July 2009 to present. Just 3 short weeks later, Senator Johnny Isakson of Georgia, came to the rescue, and our father now has FINALLY received the accrued benefits due him. Without Senator Isakson and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, we would never have made it through to a successful conclusion. Please do not hesitate to contact your Senators!!! They will help you!!! And Vetadmin, thank you once again for what you do every day for our Vets and their families.
     
  12. vetadmin

    vetadmin Administrator Staff Member

    So sorry you got the horror story nobody wants, but so thankful your Senator stepped up to help get this through.

    No excuse for this delay, but glad you prevailed with assistance.
     
  13. swainlaw

    swainlaw Newbie

    The system does not always - should I say never - act logically. Regardless of the claimant's competency they are still required to sign the forms.

    The VA will not recognize a valid power of attorney unless it is on their forms (21-22a). They also do not care that the Court has named someone their guardian. They will make their own determination as to who should be named their fiduciary.

    When the VA sends a letter stating that they have declared the claimant to be incompetent it is important to reply immediately to waive the right to the hearing (could save as much as 60 days in the process). They will accept a waiver signed by the person they have declared as incompetent. If you don't send the waiver (we send then with the application when we are sure the claimant will be declared incompetent) nothing will happen until the 60 day right to request a hearing passes. Once the waiver is received or the 60 days has passed the claim will be sent to the fiduciary department to start their process.
     

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