Many veterans may find themselves unprepared for how much time they will spend either preparing, submitting, or worrying about a claim for disability compensation from the VA. Handling a physical disability or an illness in connection to service is challenging for any veteran, and applying for VA disability benefits and figuring out how the systems work presents even more challenges.
The claims process can be made more efficient by organizing your paperwork and supporting documentation. The best thing you can do is to present a claim that is as developed as possible. While you can’t help the complexities of your case, you can make sure that you begin the process in a timely manner, do not procrastinate and cause further delays, make sure you have all your available medical evaluations and opinions ready, and be prepared to do a lot of communicating.
Documenting and Filing Earlier Is Better
For many veterans, disabilities develop over time, and may not have presented serious difficulties at first. Especially in cases like PTSD, TBI or common disorders like tinnitus, symptoms may continue to get worse long after you have returned home. It’s best to file your claim as soon as you are diagnosed with a condition you believe to be connected to your military service.
If you want to file for disability while you are still on active duty, it’s advised that you go through the Benefit Delivery At Discharge or BDD program, or file a ‘Quick Start’ claim if you are expected to be out of the service within 60 days. Keep in mind that if you are unsure about filing, there isn’t a time limit, but you may regret that you did not get the claims process going sooner—especially if you think your case may be complicated.
Provide Everything Possible
When you first file your claim, it’s important to fill out all necessary forms and to try to do so without error, along with providing all the documentation you can. When the VA is tasked to seek out records that may be hard to find, that’s when you may begin seeing a slowdown. Provide everything in your power and do so in an organized fashion that will streamline the process.
It is also important to understand exactly what type of disability you want to claim, and know that if there is more than one, you will need provide all the relevant information for each claim. Be sure to make attending each medical evaluation a top priority. Do everything in your power not to miss medical appointments, and to keep copies and records of all of them.
Denied? We Can Help With Your Appeal
If you are denied for disability compensation through the VA and you want to appeal, it’s time to consult with an experienced veterans lawyer. For a free evaluation of your case, contact us at Chisholm, Chisholm & Kilpatrick. With many years of experience representing veterans around the U.S., we have the experience to argue your case and help you gain the benefits you deserve.
For immediate help, call us at 401-331-6300 or contact us online.