DVA Newsroom

Important changes to some DVA correspondence

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The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA) recently changed the way veterans and DVA clients receive some letters. The change gives clients a better and more accessible experience when using online services.

Veterans and clients who have a MyService account have started receiving a number of letters, including letters advising of decisions and outcomes of claims, digitally in their myGov inbox.

The delivery of letters through myGov is safe and secure. To ensure veterans do not miss any correspondence, they also receive a notification via text message or email alerting them to new items in their myGov inbox. They can access their myGov inbox via any device, meaning it is accessible any time they have access to the internet.

If the DVA client has a MyService account and does not wish to receive letters through the myGov inbox, they can change their preference in MyService to ensure they continue to receive a hard copy in the mail. They can simply look for the ‘Correspondence’ button on the MyService homepage.

If the veteran does not have a MyService account, these changes will not affect them.

If you or any of the veterans you advocate for need any help or advice regarding these changes, please call us on 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) or visit your local Veteran Access Network office.

To register for a MyService account, go to www.dva.gov.au/myservice

If you or the veteran are experiencing issues with your myGov account, please call Services Australia on 132 307.

Access to the Defence, Veterans’ and Families’ Acute Support Package

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Legislation has recently passed in Parliament to enable the Defence, Veterans’ and Families’ Acute Support Package. This package expands the existing Family Support Package to provide more practical services and flexibility for families.

Requirements for veterans to have warlike service or be participating in rehabilitation will be removed. Eligibility will be expanded to working age families of veterans eligible for certain payments under all three Acts, who are at risk of or are in crisis. Working age widowed partners of veterans whose death was related to service, including suicide, under all three Acts will also now be eligible. This eligibility expansion allows veteran families to access important support when they need it most.

Support for widowed partners will be improved by allowing them to access support for two years from the date of acceptance into the program, rather than the date of death of the veteran.

Financial limits for each service category of childcare, counselling and household services will be replaced with an overall yearly cap, providing families with greater flexibility. Additionally, a range of new practical supports will be available to help families build independence and resilience including but not limited to financial literacy, mental health first aid, academic and wellbeing support for children, resilience development and counselling.

Access to the Defence, Veterans’ and Families’ Acute Support Package commences 14 October 2022.

For more information, including eligibility requirements, visit https://www.dva.gov.au/financial-support/support-families/defence-veterans-and-families-acute-support-package

Veteran Payment – Who is eligible?

Did you know that veterans who have submitted a claim for a mental health condition under either the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation (Defence-related Claims) Act 1988 (DRCA) or the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 (MRCA) may be eligible for the Veteran Payment.

The Veteran Payment is a short-term payment made available for eligible veterans if:

  • They are unable to work more than eight hours a week, and
  • Their income and assets are under means testing limits, and
  • They are below the pension age

If the veteran is a member of a couple, the partner may also be eligible for the Veteran Payment.

The Veteran Payment is accessible while a veteran’s mental health claim is being assessed and will continue until an outcome is determined. If the claim is approved, they will move to the relevant payment or benefit. If the mental health claim is not approved, the Veteran Payment will continue for 42 days after they have been notified of an outcome. This can be extended in special circumstances. They will then need to apply for an appropriate Services Australia income support payment if required. DVA can assist with this process.   

Applying for the Veteran Payment is easy and should be done at the same time as you are assisting the veteran to submit their claim for a mental health condition. If the claim is being submitted online via MyService, the question will ask if the veteran wishes to apply for the Veteran Payment during the completion of the online form. If you are completing a paper form on behalf of the veteran, you will be directed to complete a D9333 Veteran Payment Details form.

For further questions about eligibility for the Veteran Payment, visit  https://www.dva.gov.au/financial-support/income-support/support-when-you-cannot-work/veteran-payment-overview

Improvements to Incapacity claims in MyService

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Incapacity annual reviews and change of circumstances are now in MyService

MyService continues to improve and expand, making it easier for veterans to do their DVA business online.  If veterans receive an Incapacity Payment or are applying for it, some new features in MyService will make it simpler for them.

MyService already enables veterans to submit a claim for Incapacity Payment. Information and supporting documents required to prepare their claim are explained in greater detail and they will have the option to let us know if they’d like to receive interim payments as part of the new improvements.

When they’ve submitted their claim, MyService will display a claim ID and claim status against the claim.  This feature only applies if the Incapacity claim has been submitted using MyService after the new features are introduced.

New features are also coming to allow veterans to upload supporting documents for their incapacity claim after the claim has been submitted, and they’ll be able to advise us online of any changes to their circumstances that may affect their claim.

What if the veteran started their claim before these new features were released?

If veterans started and saved their claim before these new features were released, their claim will still appear on their Claims page in MyService with an “Incomplete” status.  Veterans can resume their claim as usual to complete and submit.

Veterans may notice changes to some of the questions in their claim so we recommend that they review the responses they’ve provided just as they would before these new features became available.  Veterans will need to respond to any remaining questions in order to finalise and submit their claim.

 

Incapacity Payments annual review of circumstances

If veterans receive an Incapacity Payment and they have a MyService account, they can now complete their Annual Review of Circumstances online using MyService.  Completing the review online gives the veteran greater flexibility to provide us with more information, it’s faster, and the veteran will always have a record of their review in MyService.

When the veteran’s review date is approaching, if they have a MyService account we’ll send them a notification in their myGov inbox 28 days before their review is due to be completed.

When the veteran signs in to MyService, the task panel on their home page will indicate that they have a task to be completed.  If they happen to forget to complete their review, we’ll send a reminder notification in the veteran’s myGov inbox 7 days before the task due date.

If veterans receive a notification from us and they’d prefer to complete their review manually, they can download the form D1352 Annual Review of circumstances from the DVA website or call DVA on 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) and we can post you one.  When the veteran has completed the form, they can send it to us by post or email using the addresses on the form.

If a veteran doesn’t have a MyService account, we’ll still send their Annual Review of Circumstances form in the post or email.

If veterans need help with their claim or annual review, they can call us on 1800 VETERAN (1800 838 372) and ask for “Incapacity Payments”. 

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