Travel Pay Benefits
Beginning May 1. 2013, Veterans began receiving their travel pay benefits via direct deposit or by check.
Eventually all travel pay will be paid by electronic funds transfer, taking the place of cash at the
window and checks.
Veterans will also be able to fill in their claims using a fast, electronic process - no more standing in long lines.
|Q: When will this change occur?
A. This change is occurring now. If you are a Veteran who currently receives VBA benefits by direct deposit, you may have already been enrolled to receive your beneficiary travel and compensated work therapy payments by direct deposit through an automated process. Check with the point of contact provided in this information packet if you are not sure.
Q: Why is the VA making this change?A: The U.S. Department of Treasury has directed that federal non-tax payments, with few exceptions, will be made by EFT as a part of government-wide cost reduction.
Q: What is the benefit of these changes to me?A: EFT provides a faster and more reliable method of reimbursement than paper checks through the mail, with reimbursements normally being credited to your account within 1 – 2 business days. EFT payment processing is more efficient and accurate. Waiting in long lines to receive payment is eliminated.
Q: How do I sign up for electronic payments?
A: Signing up for direct deposit is easy. All you need to do is complete and submit the Direct Deposit Enrollment form. You can fill in this form and print it and follow the instructions on the form
Q: What happens to the form after I fill it out and turn it in?
A: The VA will process the information, which is used solely for the purposes of enrolling you for direct deposit payments.
Q: What if I don’t have a bank or credit union account?
A: You need to open an account in order to receive payment by direct deposit.
Q: How does direct deposit work and is it safe?
A: The U.S. Department of the Treasury sends your money through a safe electronic transfer directly to your bank or credit union account. Your personal information is not sent over the internet.
Q: Once my direct deposit is set up, what do I need to do to get my beneficiary travel reimbursement?
A: You will still request reimbursement for each day of travel, following the local process at the facility where you receive care.
Q: I receive care at a VA outpatient clinic or CBOC. How will this impact me?
A: Veterans treated at the outpatient clinics and community based clinics will also receive payment by direct deposit. Will I still be able to receive some of my reimbursement in cash. Cash will remain available to Veterans that meet Treasury exemption guidelines and, on a one-time basis, to Veterans in order to return home as we implement this payment process change. However, you need to plan for this in the future and carry sufficient cash with you to return home.
Q: What if I don’t want to receive my payment by direct deposit?
A: If you decline receiving payment by direct deposit, you will be issued a Direct Express Debit MasterCard as soon as the debit card program is available at our facility - that'll be later this year.
Questions about Beneficiary Travel?
Most Veterans who are travel eligible will submit an electronic travel claim at clinic check-in using their Veteran ID card.
Approved claims will be paid by check in 10-14 days or, in the near future, by electronic funds transfer in 3-5 days.
Travel is paid to the nearest VA that provides equivalent care
Concerns? Please contact the Health Benefits Unit (A1174)
or by calling (317-988-2510/4605)
Additional community transportation resources may be available.
For information and referral to programs in your area call Connect2Help by dialing 2-1-1 or (317) 926-4357