For Immediate Release:
Steve Sanson President Veterans In Politics International 702 283 8088
Karen Steelmon Auxiliary Director Veterans In Politics International 702 238 5134
Nevada Legislatures turns its back on Disabled Veteran Issues
Las Vegas, Nevada
Veterans In Politics International (VIPI) fully supported Assembly Bill 271. This bill would have brought Nevada Law into compliance with Federal Law and ensure our Veterans’ rights are followed by State Courts. Title 38 U.S. Code, Section 5301(a), makes VA disability benefits immune “from taxation, claims of creditors, attachment, levy and seizure.” Further, while the 1982 Uniformed Services Former Spouses Protection Act (USFSPA) allows courts to distribute “disposable” military retired pay as marital property or as alimony or child support, the law also excludes disability compensation from the definition of “net disposable income” that can be divided under the USFSPA.
Currently, in the Great State of Nevada, divorce lawyers are demanding judges ignore Federal Law in obtaining awards of alimony for able bodied spouses through a Veteran’s military disability service connected benefits during Family Court divorce proceedings. In many cases, this leaves the Veteran in dire financial circumstances, some penniless and homeless.
The Veterans Administration provides disability benefits to help make our Veterans whole. These benefits are for the pain and suffering these Veterans have to live with for the rest of their lives. Some of these veterans are 100% disabled and unemployable. Awarding alimony based on these disability benefits to able body spouses is not only against Federal law, but inhumane.
Assemblyman Jim Wheeler sponsored AB271 and he needed seven votes for this bill to be voted out of the Judiciary Committee. Assemblyman Wheeler had seven votes. Unfortunately, the Chairman of this Committee, Jason Frierson (D), chose to deny the Committee the opportunity to bring the bill up for a vote. It is our understanding from credible sources that Assemblyman Frierson did not want this bill to be heard, or for the committee to record the votes of those opposing this bill, even though the seven (7) votes were there to forward the bill out of committee. Instead Assemblyman Frierson refused to bring the bill up for a vote and it died in committee.
If there is any Special Class of Citizens in this country it is your United States Military Veteran.