VA Reduces Paperwork Requirements For Pension Benefits

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced it is cutting red tape for Veterans who receive VA pension benefits by eliminating the need for them to complete an annual Eligibility Verification Report (EVR). VA will implement a new process for confirming eligibility for benefits, and staff that had been responsible for processing the old form will instead focus on eliminating the compensation claims backlog.

Historically, pension beneficiaries have been required to complete an EVR each year to ensure their pension benefits continued. At least 150,000 veterans would have been required to submit the eligibility report in January 2013 or risk losing their pension benefits. The new process means veterans won’t have to resubmit eligibility forms each year.

The EVR had asked for annual updates on veterans’ finances, medical coverage and living situation.  In its place, department officials will use data from the Internal Revenue Service and Social Security Administration to confirm veterans’ eligibility.

The shift will free up about 100 claims processors, about two-thirds of the workforce assigned to process ERV reports. Those staffers will be reassigned to work on the department’s benefits backlog. At present, more than 567,000 claims for VA benefits have been pending for more than 125 days.

The December 10, 2012 VA Press Release announcing the elimination of EVR reporting requirement is annexed here – VA, SSA and IRS Cut Red Tape for Veterans and Survivors