Congress Extends Deadline for Cost of Living Increase

Congress to decide on Cost of Living Increase for Veteran’s Benefits

Congress now has until early December to approve a cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) in disability and survivors benefits which affect about 3.9 million veterans.
Should Congress approve the bill in early December the increase would still appear in January 2013 payments.

According to a recent article in Military Times, the Veterans Administration recently confirmed that the original deadline of November 13 (the first day lawmakers return after taking a break due to the November 6, elections) has now been bumped up.  Although the VA has not provided a specific deadline for Congress to act, congressional aides say they were told the final date for changes is the week of December 3, 2012.

Pending COLA legislation was left in limbo last month after Congress left town for a pre-election break.  The House passed legislation that would favor the cost-of-living increase, but the Senate has yet to vote.  Meanwhile, the actual increase has not yet been calculated although the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office has calculated the increase should be at least 1.3 percent.

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