How Will You Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Vietnam War on March 29, 2023? 

This week, we commemorate two significant days, National Medal of Honor Day on March 25, and National Vietnam War Veterans Day (NVWVD) on March 29.  

The Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that today there are more than 7 million US Vietnam veterans living in America and abroad, along with 10 million families of those who served during this time frame. 

This year is significant because it marks 50 years since the day United States Military Assistance Command, Vietnam was disestablished (March 29, 1973) and also marks the day the last US combat troops departed Vietnam. In addition, on and around this same day, Hanoi released the last of its acknowledged prisoners of war.  

The Vietnam War Commemoration honors all veterans who served on active duty in the US Armed Forces at any time from November 1, 1955, to May 15, 1975, regardless of location, and their families. You can attend one of more than 1,000 events and pinning ceremonies held nationwide to commemorate these courageous individuals. It’s important to ensure that current and future generations never forget the service and sacrifice of Vietnam Veterans! 

In addition, to commemorate veterans, a Joint Wreath-Laying Ceremony will take place on Wednesday, March 29, at 10 a.m. at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC. View the live-streamed ceremony on the Vietnam War 50th Facebook page or the Department of Defense streaming page.  

Learn more about commemorative events here. By Presidential Proclamation, The United States of America Vietnam War Commemoration will continue through Veterans Day, November 11, 2025. 

Encourage the Veterans in Your Life to Take Advantage of VA Benefits 

This 50th anniversary, as you remember to thank your family members, friends, and neighbors who served in the Vietnam War, be sure to encourage the Veteran(s) in your life to take advantage of VA benefits they have earned and deserve. These benefits include those now available after the passage of the Sergeant First Class Heath Robinson Honoring our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics Act of 2022 (PACT Act), the most significant expansion of VA benefits in more than 30 years. 

The PACT Act empowers VA to provide much-needed benefits and expanded eligibility for health care to generations of Veterans who were exposed to toxic fumes and other environmental hazards during their service, including many Vietnam War veterans exposed to Agent Orange.  

Don’t Miss Out on PACT Act Benefits Because of Confusion 

Just like any change in eligibility or benefits, there can be confusion or misinformation. Veterans shouldn’t miss out on their health care benefits and/or disability benefits because they heard the wrong information. Here is some clarifying information about the PACT Act and how it affects veterans’ benefits. 

  • The PACT Act expands health care and disability benefits to many groups of veterans who were not previously eligible. Eligibility includes veterans who participated in a toxic exposure risk activity while serving on active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training. 
  • If you file a PACT Act benefits claim between now and August 10, 2023, you may receive benefits paid back to August 10, 2022 — the day the bill was signed into law. The VA is encouraging all veterans who think they might be eligible to file now. 
  • If you’ve previously had a claim rejected and might be eligible under PACT, you should reopen that claim or file a new claim. Filing a claim for health care benefits and/or disability benefits is free, and you can do it yourself (or with the help of a friend or family member) online here. The VA encourages veterans who need support to seek out a qualified expert to help. You can get help from a Service Officer through your state’s Department of Veterans Affairs:  

You can also get help through any of these veterans service organizations (you don’t need to be a member of any of these organizations to request assistance):  

  • Surviving family members may be eligible for a variety of benefits. The PACT Act makes receiving Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) easier for survivors.  
  • While the VA is supposed to contact survivors who were previously denied DIC and may now be eligible, survivors do not have to wait to submit a claim. They can do so now. Which form to fill out depends upon your relationship to the veteran. Click here to determine the proper form to fill out.  
  • In addition to DIC, other allowances, payments, and benefits are available. That list includes a survivors pension, burial benefits and memorial items, a burial allowance, education and training, a VA-backed home loan, and health care.  
  • Additionally, a onetime accrued benefits payment may be made to a surviving family member when records show the veteran was due additional benefits before death. 
  • The VA has made significant progress in speeding up the time between the application for and delivery of benefits to veterans.  
  • Over the past year, it has hired more than 1,700 claims processors, increased claims automation and invested in proactively scanning military personnel files into its systems.  
  • The Veterans Benefits Administration broke its all-time record with 1.7 million completed claims this year, 12 percent more claims than in the past fiscal year, which was the previous record. 
  • There are no fees to apply for PACT Act benefits, and the VA will never charge veterans for processing a claim.  

Be aware that there’s been an increase in PACT Act-related scams targeting veterans to access their PACT Act benefits or submit claims on their behalf. Veterans should be very cautious of anyone asking for fees in order to help, and also cautious of anyone who guarantees a financial benefit or service. 

Veterans and their survivors can learn more about PACT Act-related benefits by visiting or by calling 1-800-MyVA411 (1-800-698-2411). 

The Farr Law Firm Works with Veterans Enrolled in the Wounded Warrior Project  

At the Farr Law Firm, we work with veterans enrolled in the Wounded Warriors Project Independence Program, which helps eligible veterans who have a spinal cord injury, a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury, or a neurodegenerative disorder such as MS or ALS. The Wounded Warrior Project also offers a multitude of other services that veterans (even nondisabled veterans) may benefit from. Contact the Wounded Warrior Project Resource Center at 888-997-2586, and one of their coordinators will be available to assist you and begin to assess the programs within WWP that might be helpful for you.   

Let Us Help You Get the VA Pension Benefits to Which You’re Entitled  

Applying for veterans’ pension benefits can be an arduous process. Here at the Farr Law Firm, we work with veterans and their spouses to evaluate whether they qualify or may in the future qualify for the Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefit and/or Medicaid, and we deal with all the paperwork. We can also indirectly assist disabled veterans apply for disability compensation benefits.   

As a Certified Elder Law Attorney and an Accredited Attorney with the US Department of Veterans Affairs, I understand both the Veterans Aid and Attendance Benefit and the Medicaid program and the interaction between both entitlement programs. Please call us at any time to make an appointment for a consultation:  

Northern Virginia Veterans Aid and Attendance Planning: 703-691-1888   
Fredericksburg, VA Veterans Aid and Attendance Planning: 540-479-1435   
Rockville, MD Veterans Aid and Attendance Planning: 301-519-8041   
Annapolis, MD Veterans Aid and Attendance Planning: 410-216-0703   
Washington, DC Veterans Aid and Attendance Planning: 202-587-2797 

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About Evan H Farr, CELA, CAP

Evan H. Farr is a 4-time Best-Selling author in the field of Elder Law and Estate Planning. In addition to being one of approximately 500 Certified Elder Law Attorneys in the Country, Evan is one of approximately 100 members of the Council of Advanced Practitioners of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and is a Charter Member of the Academy of Special Needs Planners.