The Deschutes County Veterans’ Services Office advocates for, and assists veterans and their family members in applying to the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs, and other local agencies for all benefits that may be available to them. These benefits may include service-connected disability compensation, non-service connected pensions, widows’ pensions, death and indemnity compensation, medical benefits, burial benefits, education, home improvement grants for handicapped adaptability, specially adapted automobile grants, vocational rehabilitation, clothing allowances, and emergency grant funding.
Deschutes County veterans’ service officers are accredited through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the Oregon Department of Veterans Affairs. The service officers have extensive knowledge and training of the federal laws, rules, and regulations governing VA benefits. This training and certification allows our service officers to provide the best advocacy and to produce the most comprehensive claims work possible for the veterans and family members of Deschutes County.
The department conducts an extensive outreach program to other areas of the county, including the local veteran’s outpatient medical clinic, the local Vet Center, Veterans' Services offices in Redmond and La Pine, and an established office in Sisters (space provided by the Sisters Chamber of Commerce). Veterans' Services officers also conduct in-home and assisted living facility visits, and nursing home visits to those who are disabled and unable to leave their homes, or to those that have no other means of transportation.
The department also provides a federal work study program to assist veterans currently utilizing their GI Bill and to those enrolled in higher education or a VA approved vocational rehabilitation program such as the pilot training program or the truck driving school. This program provides qualified students a place to work in a veterans’ benefits environment, and they are paid by the Federal Veterans Administration.
The Deschutes County Veterans' Services department currently maintains more than 5,200 files, which have increased in number by approximately 800 from the prior year. The office currently schedules between 35 and 45 clients a week, assists between 25 and 50 walk-in clients per week, and receives 30 to 45 phone calls per day. The office also makes referrals to other state and local services to help veterans receive the help they need.
Assistance is provided in obtaining and compiling the necessary documents required by the Federal Veterans' Affairs website (https://www.va.gov/) to complete the claims filing process. Forms requested include military service and military medical records, discharges and DD214's, marriage certificates, divorce decrees, death certificates, birth certificates, civilian medical records; information about receiving medals, ribbons and commendations, and any other information that may be required by Veterans' Affairs. In the event the claim is denied, this department also provides help with the appeals process.
NOTE: The staff in this office are not federal Veterans' Administration employees, they are employees of Deschutes County. The veteran services listed above are provided to the veterans of Deschutes County at no charge.
Please contact one of our friendly staff members to schedule an appointment or for general veteran’s benefits information.
Keith Macnamara-CVSO, Carrie Lucas-ACVSO, Shannon Orf-Customer Service Clerk 11
Phone: (541) 385-3214