FAQ's: Termination of Eligibility Verification Report

Q: Why didn’t I receive an Eligibility Verification Report this year?

A: The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) will no longer require beneficiaries to complete EVR forms to continue receiving pension. This is because VA is working with other government agencies, such as Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), to verify your income through other means. While you will no longer be required to complete an EVR form each year, you must continue to report to VA any changes in your income or dependency status, as soon as possible after a change occurs.

Q: Why am I getting this letter on the elimination of EVRs now?

A: We sent this letter to inform you about VA’s change in the EVR policy and to remind you of your responsibility to report changes in your income or changes in your dependency status to the VA. The letter also provides additional information, such as information on the Treasury mandate for direct deposit and eBenefits.

Q: Is the Pension Program going away?

A: No. The Pension Program is not going away. You will continue to receive your pension payments at the applicable rate. However, if there is a change in your income, your dependency status, or the amount of unreimbursed medical expenses that you have paid, you must tell us. Such changes could result in a change in the amount of benefit payments that you are entitled to receive.

Q: How will you know if I receive income?

A: Although you are still responsible for reporting any income changes for you or your family members (spouse or child) whom you claim as dependents for pension purposes, VA will also verify your income received through computer matching agreements with other federal agencies, such as IRS and SSA.

Q: How will this affect my benefit moving forward?

A: You will continue to receive your current monthly benefit payment at the applicable rate, unless a change is reported.

Q: I am particularly worried that VA will cut off or suspend my benefits if I do not complete the EVR form. Will VA cut my pension off?

A: No. Going forward, VA will not stop your benefits for failure to return an EVR form. Because VA no longer requires you to complete an EVR, your benefit payments will continue at the applicable rate. However, if there is a change in your income, your dependency status or the amount of unreimbursed medical expenses that you have paid, you must tell us. Such changes could result in a change in the amount of benefit payments to which you are entitled.

Q: Will the suspension of EVRs have any impact on my ability to submit unreimbursed medical expenses?

A: No. This change does not impact your ability to submit a claim for your unreimbursed medical expenses. However, these expenses must have been paid during the calendar year. You may report any unreimbursed medical expenses on VA Form 21-8416, Medical Expense Report.

Q: Do I still have the option of submitting an EVR to report my change in income?

A: No. You will need to use VA Form, 21-527, Income-Net Worth and Employment Statement, to report any changes income. You can locate the appropriate form at http://www.va.gov/vaforms/.

Q: Do I still have to submit a medical expense report every year?

A: No. It is not necessary to submit a new medical expense report every year for those expenses that are recurring and will remain unchanged. However, if VA is not paying you at the highest possible pension rate due to income, you can submit additional unreimbursed medical expenses that have been paid by you. If approved, VA will use these to offset your income, so that you receive a higher monthly payment amount.

Q: What if I’m in a nursing home or assisted living facility? Will I receive an EVR form to complete?

A: No. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has discontinued the EVR form. The fact that you may be in a nursing home or assisted living facility does not change this policy. While you will no longer be required to complete an EVR form each year, you must continue to report any changes in your income or dependency status, as soon as possible after a change occurs.

Q: What happens if VA discovers income I forgot to report or what if I forget to tell VA when I get divorced?

A: VA will notify you if we receive information affecting your entitlement to benefits. Because your pension payment is based on your countable income, your dependent family member’s income and their dependency status, these must be reviewed to determine if you are still eligible for benefit payments. If a period of time has passed between the change in income and or dependency of family members and the date in which it is discovered and processed by VA, you might be responsible to repay some or all of the benefits that were received by you.

Q: What do I do if I move?

A: Submit your change of address to VA. You can submit a change of address in several ways, to include: by telephone, by writing to us, or by visiting your local regional office or through your appointed claims representative.

Q: Where can I get more information on the elimination of EVRs?

A: All beneficiaries currently receiving VA pension benefits will receive a letter from VA explaining these changes and providing instructions on how to continue to submit your unreimbursed medical expenses. If you have questions, or if you would like to report changes in income or dependency, please call us toll-free by dialing 1-877-294-6380 or by visiting https://iris.va.gov/ to search Frequently Asked Questions or ask a question on-line. More information about pension benefits can also be found at http://www.benefits.va.gov/pension.