Receiving a favorable compensation decision from the VCF may seem like a hollow victory until you actually have the money in hand, especially if you and your family are struggling to make ends meet. Fortunately, the VCF administrators have taken steps to streamline the payment process and avoid many of the issues and delays that seem to plague other federal and state programs. For your part, it is important to realize that receiving your compensation decision may not be the end. You still need to work with VCF and your attorney to ensure you receive your benefits as soon as possible.
As we have outlined before, successful VCF claimants receive their awards in several disbursements, the first coming as quickly as 30 days after a final decision. To limit costs and minimize fraud, the VCF has elected to issue payments through electronic direct deposit using the Automated Clearing House (ACH) system. This means that many successful claimants must take several steps to ensure timely receipt of their payments:
- Establish a bank account with a reputable financial institution.
- Complete Section 1 of the VCF’s ACH Payment Information Form.
- Take the form to your financial institution and ask them to complete Section 3 by providing its routing number and confirming that you own the account.
- Mail the completed form to the address listed in Section 2.
For claimants represented by an attorney, the Special Master has authorized the direct disbursement of award funds to law firms that have entered an arrangement with the VCF. In these cases, claimants need not complete the ACH Payment Information Form. Additionally, claimants who reside outside of the U.S. cannot receive direct deposit and are paid via paper checks issued by the U.S. Treasury.
The attorneys of Barasch & McGarry are ready to assist VCF claimants and potential claimants with all aspects of the claims process.