by Patrick Campbell
On April 1st, nearly 6,000 student veterans discovered that the VA had mistakenly withheld up to $500 from their GI Bill checks. Unfortunately, this was not an April Fools' prank. Last week, after receiving a number of complaints from our members we publicized that the VA’s recoupment of the emergency $3,000 checks got off to a rocky start. We reached out to the VA and later that day the VA acknowledged the snafu. They posted a statement on the problem below.
What you need to know: if you were affected, you do not need to do anything. The VA is arranging to refund the money to you. They promise the money will be refunded within a week.
IAVA's got your back and will continue to monitor the situation.
Full VA Statement:
Advance Pay Recoupment Issues
April 3, 2010 9:05 AM
Many of you have commented of the fact that your Advance Payment recoupment was more than the amount you asked VA’s Debt Management Center (DMC) to withhold from your April benefit. We hear you loud and clear and we're looking into some glitches in the system that snagged a number of people accidentally. We should have the issue solved within a few days.
Everyone is going to get all the money to which they are entitled. We understand that a number of student Veterans did not receive their March education benefit as expected on April 1 because of an error in the process of recovering funds for the Fall 2009 advance payments. For some student Veterans, the full amount of the benefit was deducted to recover the advance payment when a lesser amount should have been deducted. VA’s actions to refund this error are underway.
Letters will be sent within the next 48 hours to everyone affected by the issue either by email or through the United States Postal Service. We apologize for the inconvenience this inadvertently caused Veterans and their families. We ask for your patience as we resolve this important issue. We will update with any changes to our progress of correcting the error. You do not need to take any action; VA is working with the U.S Department of the Treasury to refund the over-collections. Payments will be issued to student Veterans within a week.