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Glossary

Compensation and Pension (C&P) Examination Definition

A Compensation and Pension (C&P) exam, is a medical examination of a veteran’s disability, performed by a VA healthcare provider, or a VA contracted provider.  VA uses C&P exams to gather more evidence on a veteran’s claimed condition before issuing a decision and assigning a rating.  Most commonly, C&P exams are used to (1) confirm or deny service connection, and/or (2) establish the severity of a veteran’s disability.  Before the exam, the examiner will review your entire claims file, which contains previously submitted evidence and medical treatment records.  The exam itself usually only lasts about 15-20 minutes, but can range anywhere from 5 minutes to several hours.

During the C&P exam, the examiners will ask questions about your disability and how it affects aspects of daily functioning.  VA examiners might complete a Disability Benefits Questionnaire (DBQ) as well.  Each DBQ is drafted to correspond with a specific condition, and is formatted for examiners to “check a box” next to descriptions that most accurately depict the disability in question.  After the exam, the examiner will write up a report that includes a review of the exam’s findings, any clinical test results, and any medical literature used by the examiner.  The C&P exam is then added to your claims file as part of the evidence VA adjudicators will use to make a decision.