Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Fil-Am veterans equity benefits trickle in


Thousands of California-based Filipino-American veterans of the Second World War have expressed gratitude over the federal government's concerted action which granted them at least $15,000 each in equity compensation starting last week.

In fact, many of those based in Carson, California, where a large number of these veterans are concentrated, have started receiving their notices from the US Veterans Administration (USVA), which are proof that the money that they are supposed to get for a long time had been finally approved for release.

Jesus Belicano and Richard Ongsotto, Jr. , who belonged to the Philippine Scout during the war and now U.S. citizens, have expressed high hopes that they could finally go for a short vacation to the Philippines once they receive their equity compensation from the government. However, until now both are still waiting for those letter notices to become "cash".

The same is through with Ildefonso Quibin, a native of Isabela province in northern Philippines, who until now is still waiting for his notice to come.In fact, he already sent an inquiry to the Los Angeles Veterans Affairs Office to verify why he has not received any notice yet while many others already did.

The notices asked the veterans to just go to their respective banks and inquire using the check reference numbers shown on each respective notice to verify if the money had been deposited in their bank accounts. However, the puzzle now builds up among them as to the proper instructions given by the Veterans Affairs Office on how and in what manner they will receive the money?

The veterans are expecting they will get the check amounting to $15,000 in their respective addresses, rather than going to the bank to inquire as to whether the money had been deposited or not. Unless the VAO will ask the Social Security Administration (SSA) to furnish them copies of the veterans' bank account numbers, they would face a blank wall on where to send the compensation money.

As of this writing, the veterans said they have strong faith in the way the Veterans Affairs Office is handling the problem on reaching for each of the thousands of surviving Fil-Am veterans, who, in their twilight years, are still able to get what is due them after all these years.
A couple of month back, the US Veterans Affairs Office had already authorized release millions of dollars in equity money for recognized veterans based in the Philippines, where each of them was entitled to get $9,000 in equity compensation ahead from those based in the United States. While surviving widows of veterans failed to get anything from the USVA.

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