Again the Veterans get the short end of the stick, let the Feds withhold welfare payments and all hell breaks out.
The Pentagon has been deducting money erroneously from combat-wounded veterans’ severance pay for 25 years, an error officials knew about for years and that might have affected upwards of 13,000 troops, according to lawmakers and a veterans advocacy group.
Now lawmakers are trying to return the money — estimated to be $78 million — through a bi-partisan bill introduced Thursday.
Federal law prohibits taxation of the lump sum disability severance paid to troops who separate from service after combat-related injuries. But the pay system used by the Department of Defense has been automatically deducting taxes from those payments since 1991, according to a joint statement from the National Veterans Legal Services Program and Sens. John Boozman, R-Ark., and Mark Warner, D-VA.
The error often cost individual troops thousands of dollars.
The National Veterans Legal Services Program, a nonprofit veterans service organization, first discovered the problem and brought it to the attention of lawmakers.
“Most troubling is that we learned the government had known about this problem for decades yet continued to take this money from thousands of disabled veterans,” Tom Moore, an attorney with the National Veterans Legal Services Program, said in the joint statement.