Each year, COLA for veterans has to be enacted through Congress but it does not happen automatically. This should not be a yearly process and should occur by law each year according to the rates of disability compensation for veterans with service-connected disabilities and the rates of dependency and indemnity compensation for survivors of certain service-connected disabled veterans.
Note: This legislation supports a long-standing AFSA advocacy item – automatic, annual cost-of-living adjustments for veterans’ compensation and benefit programs. Military retiree and Social Security programs automatically annually receive a cost-of-living adjustment based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI). Veterans’ programs, however, require the passage of separate legislation in order for them to get a COLA. This bill, if passed and signed into law, would also make the annual COLAs for veterans’ programs automatic as well as tying to the CPI.