216 Higgins Road Park Ridge, IL, 60068 (847) 221-0154
If you remember correctly, in order to be considered a “wartime” veteran, you or your loved one must have been discharged under conditions other than dishonorable and must have served 90 consecutive days of active duty. The 90 days must include at least one day in one of the following date ranges:
  • World War II: December 7, 1941 to December 31, 1946
  • Korean War: June 27, 1950 to January 31, 1955
  • Vietnam War: August 5, 1964 to May 7, 1975
  • Persian Gulf War: August 2, 1990 to (date not yet determined)
In order for you or your loved one to prove that you qualify, you must have you and your loved one’s discharge papers. If you are unsure about any of these things, don’t hesitate to call my office or a Veteran’s Service Organization.
Anthony B. Ferraro

There are some little-known groups whose members may be eligible for VA Benefits. The good news is, there are a lot of these little-known groups, so that means that many of you may be eligible for VA Benefits without even knowing it. If you or your loved one belongs to any of these groups, and received a discharge from the Secretary of Defense, your service may meet the active duty requirements for benefits:
  • Recipients of the Medal of Honor
  • Honorably discharged veterans, spouses, or children of any military, naval, or air service
  • Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAACs)
  • Merchant Marines from WWII (ocean-going service)
  • U.S. Civilians of the American Field Service
  • Women Air Force Service Pilots (WASPs)
  • WWI Signal Corps Female Telephone Operators Unit
  • WWI Engineer Field Clerks
  • Female clerical employees of the Quartermaster Corps serving with the American Expeditionary Forces in WWI
  • Civilian employees of the Pacific naval air bases who actively participated in defense of Wake Island during WWII
  • Reconstruction aides and dietitians of WWI
  • Male civilian ferry pilots
  • Wake Island defenders from Guam
  • Civilian personnel assigned to OSS secret intelligence
  • Guam Combat Patrol
  • Quartermaster Corps members of the Keswick crew on Corregidor during WWII
  • U.S. civilians who participated in the defense of Bataan
  • U.S. merchant seamen who served on block ships in support of Operation Mulberry in the WWII invasion of Normandy
  • American merchant marines in oceangoing service during WWII
  • Civilian Navy IFF radar technicians who served in combat areas of the Pacific during WWI
  • U.S. civilians of the American Field Service who served overseas under U.S. armies and U.S. army groups in WWII
  • U.S. civilian employees of American Airlines who served overseas in contract with the Air Transport Command between 12/14/41 and 8/14/45
  • Civilian crewmen of certain U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey vessels between 12/7/41 and 8/15/45
  • Members of the American Volunteer Group (Flying Tigers) who served between 12/7/41 and 8/14/45
  • U.S. civilian flight crew and aviation ground support of Consolidated Vultee Aircraft Corp. who served overseas between 12/14/41 and 8/14/45
  • Honorably discharged members of the American Volunteer Guard, Eritrea Service Command, between 6/21/42 and 3/31/43
  • U.S. civilian flight crew and aviation ground support of Northwest Airlines who served overseas between 12/14/41 and 8/14/45
  • U.S. civilian female employees of the U.S. Army Nurse Corps who served in the defense of Bataan and Corregidor from 1/2/42 to 2/3/45
  • U.S. civilian flight crew and aviation ground support of Brantiff Airways who served overseas in the North Atlantic between 2/26/42 to 8/14/45
  • Chamorro and Carolina former native police who received military training in the Donnal area of central Saipan and were placed under command of Lt. Casino of the 6th Provisional Military Police Battalion to accompany U.S. Marines on active, combat patrol from 8/19/45 to 9/2/45
  • The operational Analysis Group of the Office of Scientific Research and Development, Office of Emergency Management, which served overseas with the U.S. Army Air Corps from 12/7/41 through 8/15/45
  • Honorably discharged members of the Alaska Territorial Guard during WWII
You or your loved one must have served in active duty for 90 consecutive days (either in the U.S. or abroad), at least one day of which was during a period of war, in order to meet these requirements.  That does not however mean that you must have served overseas, you could have served either at home or abroad. -Anthony B. Ferraro CPA, MSTax, JD

The truth is, very little of the general public knows about VA benefits because Congress keeps them, for the most part, under wraps.  There are a select few who are legally authorized to provide information to veterans about benefits, and they are: 1)      Federal Veterans Administration employees; 2)      Employees of state Departments of Veteran’s Affairs; 3)      Authorized representatives of Veterans Service Organizations (like the VFW and American Legion, among others); and 4)      Attorneys licensed to practice law in the veteran’s state and accredited by the VA. Lawyers, such as myself, are authorized to provide information on VA benefits.  However, federal law prohibits a lawyer from charging a veteran to assist in helping them prepare the VA claim form for benefits; we are supposed to work for free. Congress does not always allow lawyers to charge a veteran in order to help with a VA benefit claim form because Congress has the idea that: 1)      There are plenty of capable and trained VA employees available to help veterans fill out VA claim forms for free; 2)      There are plenty of capable and trained volunteers available at the various Veteran’s Service Organizations to help fill out VA claim forms; and 3)      Veterans should be protected from attorneys who would overcharge them by doing something that is supposedly as simple as completing and submitting a VA claim form. So, I truly do recommend that if you have not already tried to get help from the Veterans Administration or a Veteran’s Service Organization, you do so immediately. Like myself, they’re there to help. -Anthony B. Ferraro