Here's an outrage. The Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC) knocks down our veterans' disability claims constantly in violation of federal law. But these same CAVC judges are guaranteed great benefits and pensions.
From Col Dan Cedusky of Champaign Illinois:
Take a look at the case load … look at how few times the veteran wins ... and many claims are denied or remanded back to VARO [Veterans Affairs Regional Office] or the VBA [Veterans Benefit Administration].
- CAVC Annual Report 2008-09
- CAVC Performance and Accountability Report 2009
Now, check out these cushy benefits CAVC judges get for screwing our veterans.
NOTE 8. FEDERAL EMPLOYEE AND VETERANS’ BENEFITS
The Court’s Judicial Retirement Fund (The Fund) was established by public law 38 U.S.C. 7296-7298 in August 1989 to provide a retirement benefit to all judges of the Court who (1) retire on an optional basis after meeting minimum age and service requirements, (2) are not reappointed, or (3) retire as a result of disability. As such, the Court’s retirement fund is a defined benefitspension plan with a calendar year as its fiscal year.
Pension Benefits. A judge of the Court, who is not reappointed, is eligible to retire if he has served 15 years. Those who leave with less than 15 years of service receive only a return of employee contributions, with the exception of two sitting judges who have 13 year terms. The benefit, payable for life, is equal to the salary of the judge just prior to the retirement. This amount increases each year by the amount an active judge’s pay is increased if the retired judge has elected to be recall-eligible. Otherwise, the benefit does not increase. If a recall-eligible judge later declines to perform recall service, the benefit is frozen at that point.
Disability Benefits. A judge who is permanently disabled at any time while in office may retire on disability. The amount of benefits is as follows: (1) If a judge is not recall-eligible, the benefit is to commence immediately, payable for life,and is equal to the salary of the judge prior to disability if service with the Court totals at least 10 years. The benefit is equal to one-half of the salary of the judge just before disability if contributory service totals less than 10 years subject to Cost of Living
Adjustment (COLA).(2) If a judge is recall-eligible, the benefit is payable for life and equal to the salary of the judge just prior to disability retirement. This amount will increase each year by the amount an active judge’s pay is increased if the retired judge has elected to be recalleligible, even if later removed for further disability. If a recall-eligible judge later declines to perform recall service, the benefit is frozen at that point.
Death Benefits. The only benefits payable upon the death of a judge is a return of employee contributions unless the judge enrolls in the optional Survivors Benefits Program.
Optional Survivors Benefits Program. Participation in the survivor annuity program is elective, and those who choose to participate must contribute 2.2% of active salary or retired pay. Also, 18 months of creditable service must have been completed and contributions made for that service before benefits can be paid. For this program, creditable service may include other federalservice. Upon a participant’s death:
Unremarried widow(er) – receives an annuity equal to:
(1) 1.5% of the judge’s high-3 average annual salary multiplied by the sum of years of judicial service, allowable service as a Member of Congress, up to five (5) years of allowable military service, and up to fifteen (15) years of congressional employee service, plus,
(2) 0.75% of the judge’s high-3 average annual salary multiplied by all other creditable service. The annuity cannot be less than 25% nor exceed 50% of the average annual salary of the judge. Remarriage before age 55 terminates eligibility for a survivor annuity.
Once in payment, the annuity will be subject to annual COLAs in the amount as those received by annuitants of the Judicial Survivors’ Annuity Program.