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Effective Date Definition

An effective date is the date used by VA as a start date for the payment of disability benefits for a claim.  For disability compensation cases, the effective date of a veteran’s claim is either the date VA receives your claim, or the date entitlement arose (i.e. the date you first got your illness or injury), whichever comes later.  The effective date of a claim impacts the amount of retroactive benefits a veteran will receive.  Generally speaking, the earlier the effective date, the more retroactive compensation a veteran will receive.