Last year, Congress sent several bills to the president’s desk, including a sizable $1.7 trillion omnibus bill, which will fund the federal government through September, which increased the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) budget to over $303 billion, the highest budget that they have ever had.
That’s up about 10% from fiscal 2022 levels.
One of the reasons for the increase in VA funding reflects veterans’ needs for claims and services under the Honoring our PACT Act, which expanded VA health care and benefits to millions of veterans.
These medical services would be the main beneficiary of the funding boost, seeing more than a 22% increase ($118.7 billion) from 2022.
That’s not all the benefits that veterans will see!
The bill, more than 4,000 pages in length, also included provisions to further strengthen VA health care and veterans benefits.
For example, veterans whose clothing was damaged by skin medications, prosthesis or other orthopedic devices are eligible for a clothing allowance.
However, these benefits required an annual application process, even if it was obviously going to be recurring.
With the bill, this rule was changed, so these payments would be provided on an annual basis and become automatic.
The Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program was also made permanent, which provides employment and job training for homeless veterans, expands the Vet Center eligibility for mental health services, and set money aside for suicide prevention efforts and traumatic brain injury (TBI) and PTSD research.
“It’s our responsibility to take care of the men and women in uniform who took care of us in protecting this country—and that starts by ensuring access to the care and benefits they’ve earned with this bipartisan package,” said Sen. Jon Tester of Montana, chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee.
“I’m proud the Senate came together to pass a full-year funding bill that’ll help us make good on that promise, including to our toxic-exposed veterans.”
For a comprehensive list of veterans provisions included in the omnibus bill enacted in late 2022, you can find them on the official document here.
Have Questions About Appealing Your Claim or Understanding How the Claims Process Works?
The attorneys at Hill & Ponton are here to support you with appealing a claim to get disability benefits.
If you do get denied, you can always file again if you have the necessary medical documents and nexus that support your claims. Don’t lose hope–especially when it comes to fighting for the benefits you deserve!
If you are intending to appeal a denied claim, you can contact us for an evaluation and we can help you with this process.
However, if you are considering filing an initial claim, or even if you are interested in learning about the appeals process, we offer a free ebook to get you started on the right foot!
The Road to VA Compensation Benefits will help break down the claims process from start to finish. Click the link below to learn more.
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