Chairman Joe Wilson of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Military Personnel (SC-02) issued the following statement after introducing H.R. 32, the Military Surviving Equity Act of 2013. Currently, the Department of Defense's Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) is offset, dollar-for-dollar, by the Department of Veterans Affairs' Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) plan, which is not what Congress intended. This bill would eliminate the offset, also known as the "widow's tax," on approximately 60,000 widows and widowers of our Armed Forces.
Wilson stated, "As Chairman of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Military Personnel and thirty-one year veteran of the Army National Guard, promoting and protecting our military families is one of my top priorities. Our Armed Forces dedicate their lives to defend this great nation. Without the support of their spouses', many of our brave men and women in uniform would not be able to stay focused during training and deployments. As devastating causalities occur, it is of utmost importance and our responsibility to keep the faith with our service members by taking proper care of their families in the event of death. Federal civilian employees have similar survivor benefit plans, but do not suffer an offset. Because our military families are serving our country by supporting their loved one, it is only fair that we treat them equally, rather than penalizing them with this offset.