There are companies that are distributing misleading information to places such as ssisted Living facilities and Nursing Homes soliciting to assist veterans in obtaining Veterans dministration (V) benefits for a fee. The fee can vary from around four hundred dollars ($400) to seven hundred dollars ($700) or more. This is a huge disservice to our veterans and barely within the law.
Each county in Wisconsin has a County Veterans Service Officer (CVSO). The job of the CVSO is to assist military veterans to apply for benefits
from the Veterans dministration (V).
The assistance provided by the local CVSO is without cost to the veteran or the veteran's family, guardian, PO, or other persons representing
the veteran's interests.
There are several different companies around the country participating in this type of activity. s an example, two companies currently known to be sending misleading information are: Kneifel and ssociates in voca, WI and lliant ssociates, LLC based in Kearney Nebraska, with affiliations in Madison, WI.
The companies remain marginally within the law by taking advantage of a loophole that does not allow them to charge the veteran directly but does allow them to charge what is referred to as "Disinterested Third Parties", such as family members, guardians, POs or other persons representing the veteran's interests.
Once these companies have contact with the veteran or persons representing the interests of the veteran, they are leading them to believe that they can work more effectively in the veteran's behalf by getting the V claims through the system faster and with a higher rate of success than the local CVSO. They are also intimating that they will give more hands on assistance.
However, no matter who files the V claim or how quickly the claim is submitted, once it reaches the V it is subject to V's processing time
frame, current back logs, etc.
CVSOs are trained and accredited to assist veterans with all aspects of State and Federal V benefits. In addition, they receive many hours of
continuing education each year to maintain the ability to assist veterans with a high degree of efficiency, accuracy and success.
Veterans should never have to pay to apply for V benefits to which they may be entitled.
Nursing Homes, Community Based Residential Facilities (CBRF's) and other service related providers, as well as the general public can help to keep veterans from being taken advantage of by these unscrupulous companies and do them a great service in the future by referring veterans, their families, guardians, POs or other persons representing the interests of the veteran to the County Veterans Service Officer (CVSO) in their county. In that way, veterans will receive accurate and efficient hands on service that does not come with a fee.
For information on any veteran benefit, contact your County Veterans Service Officer whose phone number is in the blue or white pages of your phone directory or available on the website: www.wicvso.org.