April 16 — Wilkesbore — Pennsylvania veterans and their advocates should beware of scammers trying to steal military pensions, the Pennsylvania Department of Veterans Affairs (DMVA) warns. increase.
“Pension trafficking” often targets veterans over the age of 65 or veterans with disabilities who may be receiving monthly pensions from the DMVA and/or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) It is a financial exploitation.
“Older veterans can be prime targets for scammers, but all veterans and their advocates should be vigilant when seeking help with benefits earned through military service,” the DMVA said. Joel Mutschler, Director of Veterans Affairs Programs, Initiatives, Reintegration and Outreach, said. “The best way to avoid being scammed is for veterans to use a certified Veterans Services Officer when applying for benefits. We will always protect the best interests of our veterans.”
Veteran pension trafficking occurs when fraudsters, unscrupulous players, or dishonest financial planners solicit veterans or their advocates for assistance in applying for or applying for military pensions. The schemes often involve financial manipulation, such as advising claimants to hide assets in trusts or annuity products, which can result in the loss of investments and pay advisors favorable fees. .
Mutschler said veterans and advocates should be especially vigilant about PACT-related fraud. The new PACT Act law expands VA health care and benefits for veterans exposed to burns, Agent His Orange, and other toxic substances.
Here’s how veterans and advocates can protect themselves from PACT Act fraud.
— Do not provide personal, medical, financial, or veteran benefits information online or over the phone. Federal agencies will not contact you unless you request it.
— Do not click on online advertisements or engage in social media that may appear questionable.
— Look for “https://” at the beginning of the website address. That is, they are more likely to be legitimate. Enable multi-factor authentication on all accounts if possible.
—Do not share VA login information or deposit VA benefits directly into a third party’s bank account unless that person is appointed by the court or is a fiduciary of VA.
— Work with veteran service providers you already know.
— Report suspected fraud to ftc.gov.
Mutschler said he wanted to be clear that veterans and their advocates should not pay for:
— U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and/or PA DMVA forms
– Pension application fee
— restructuring assets to “qualify”
– Promise of receiving a pension
– Pension lump sum
Pennsylvania has approximately 200 veterans employees, working within organizations such as the DMVA, county veterans’ offices, and several veterans service organizations.
You can find contact information for your County Director of Veterans Affairs and your Veterans Services Officer on the DMVA website.
Experience or suspect pension fraud? Call (717) 783-1944, email PAvets@attorneygeneral.gov, or file a complaint online at www.attorneygeneral.gov. You can also report VA-related fraud to the VA Benefits Hotline at 800-827-1000.
Co-sponsored by Congressman Meuser
Bill to expand services for the elderly
Rep. Dan Mauser (R-Dallas) said this week he was the first co-sponsor of a bipartisan bill that would allow older Americans new opportunities to use the money they donate to health investment accounts. My house.
Meuser said the bipartisan Home Care for Seniors Act, HR 1795, will expand the use of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), allowing funds to be used for home care services.
The legislation was recently reintroduced by Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE) and Rep. Katie Porter (D-CA). This will allow the senior to use her HSA for specific medical care, including meal preparation, bathing, dressing, transportation, toileting, incontinence, and medication adherence.
“This law will allow older people to use the money they have saved over the years to pay for their medical needs,” stressed Meuser. “This bipartisan bill will allow them to stay in their homes and communities of their choice, giving them peace of mind when facing costs covered by this update on HSA use.”
If enacted, home care services permitted by HR 1795 must be provided by a service provider licensed by the state to provide such services; must be provided in a manner consistent with state requirements.
This measure would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow qualified distribution of certain home care costs from medical savings accounts.
The legislation has been referred to the US House Ways and Means Committee for review.
Meuser also introduced the bill
Promote market expansion
Rep. Meuser recently introduced the Secondary Trade Market Restoration Act, which is intended to promote and expedite interstate commerce of secondary trade for businesses that publish current information.
“Blue Sky Laws” pose significant concerns to traders and brokers as they create a messy patchwork of compliance regulations that vary from state to state. , distributing research results to individual clients, or facilitating transactions in managed accounts on behalf of investors.
“States should not impose these burdensome laws on the market,” Meuser said. “The Constitution gives Congress, not the states, the power to regulate interstate commerce.”
Pennsylvanians are urged to submit
Apply for Federal Student Aid by May 1
The Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) encourages Pennsylvanians to submit their Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®) by May 1st.
“Completing and submitting the FAFSA opens up a world of possibilities for many students throughout Pennsylvania. Acting Secretary Dr. Khalid N. Mumin said. “When FAFSA is not filled out, students are leaving money on the table that could help them find an education.”
All first-time applicants entering a community college. business, trade, or technical school. Hospital School of Nursing; Designated Pennsylvania Open Admissions Agency; or for her two-year program which is non-transferable, the submission deadline is extended in the first year: August 1, 2023.
More than 140 school districts across the Commonwealth have FAFSA completion rates of 50% or more for their students.
Senator Casey Urges Implementation
of the Tech Hubs Program initiative
Senator Bob Casey (D-Scranton) sent a letter this week to Commerce Secretary Gina Raimond, urging expeditious implementation of the Tech Hubs program created by the CHIPS and Science Act, and why Pennsylvania is the ideal place. claimed to be tech hub.
The Economic Development Initiative’s Tech Hubs program aims to accelerate the growth of the tech sector and the associated high-paying jobs in cities and communities across the country.
Casey believes that from life sciences in Southeast Pennsylvania to agricultural innovation in Central Pennsylvania to robotics, space technology and additive manufacturing in the Southwest, Pennsylvania’s regional technical specialties have emerged as national leaders. and claimed to be a tech hub. He propels the PA community towards national prosperity.
Casey also emphasized that Pennsylvania’s existing strengths will lead to a successful tech hub. This includes world-class universities creating talent pipelines to fill high-tech jobs and existing transportation infrastructure with the capacity to support the influx of economic activity.
Finally, Casey urged the Biden administration to implement the program quickly so communities can begin to benefit from the Congress-passed program.
“EDA must move quickly to award nominations, award funding for regional plans, and ultimately to fund nationally significant work in newly designated hubs across the country.” Casey said.
AG DeFoor is aware
financial literacy month
General Accountability Office Timothy L. Dehua This Week Honors Second Monday of Financial Literacy Month to Help Pennsylvania Seniors Save for Retirement, Recognize Fraud and Protect Against Financial Exploitation We held a “Money $mart Monday” virtual information session with the aim of
“Pennsylvanians should know how to be ‘money smart’ at every stage of their lives,” says Dehua. “Scammers are getting more creative and using technology to target seniors who don’t know how to spot the latest scams. We’ll focus on a few and offer tips to help people protect their money.”
During the virtual information session, DeFour joined PSECU’s Regional Membership Development Manager, Michelle James.
DeFour has been promoting financial literacy statewide for the past two years as part of the Be Money Smart initiative.
Contact Bill O’Boyle at 570-991-6118 or on Twitter @TLBillOBoyle.