What is a VA Form 9?
The VA Form 9, also known as the Substantive Appeal Form, is a crucial step in the appeals process. It arrives with your Statement of the Case (SOC) when the VA renders a decision on your appeal. The VA Form 9 gives you the chance to contest information on the SOC and present additional evidence. It also gives you several options for requesting a personal hearing with a VA judge.
You must file your VA Form 9 in a timely fashion. You also need compelling evidence to back up your assertion that the information contained on the SOC is incorrect. A VA attorney at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD can gather the evidence you need and ensure your VA Form 9 is filed properly. Call today for a consultation: 401-331-6300.
What information does the VA Form 9 request?
The VA Form 9 gives the VA regional office an outline of your appeal. The VA will not overturn your decision based on the form itself; you need supporting evidence for that. But a properly completed VA Form 9 makes it easier for the decision-maker to follow your argument, and it can increase your chance of a favorable decision.
The form starts with a section for personal information: your name, address, phone number, claim number, and Social Security number.
The next box lets you choose the type of hearing you want. More on this later, but essentially, you can request a hearing by videoconference, an in-person meeting at your regional VA office, or a hearing in front of a judge in Washington, D.C.
Finally, the VA Form 9 asks for the specific issues you would like to contest. You need to be very careful and thorough with this part. Everything you list requires supporting evidence. The veterans claims advocates at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD can walk you through the process.
How long do I have to submit my VA Form 9?
The VA Form 9 has strict submission deadlines. If you let these deadlines pass, then the VA’s decision is final. The only thing you can do then is to begin the entire process anew, which, as you are probably aware, can take years from start to finish.
You must submit your VA Form 9 within 60 days of the date the VA mailed your SOC. If you submitted additional evidence after receiving your SOC and the VA sent you a Supplemental Statement of the Case (SSOC) in response, you have 30 days after that to submit your VA Form 9. After that 30 days, the regional office is able to certify your appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.
Gathering sufficient evidence to reverse the VA’s decision in such a brief period can be stressful. Our attorneys have years of experience winning appeals for our clients. We can take the burden off your shoulders and help you build the strongest possible case.
What type of hearing can I request on my VA Form 9?
The VA Form 9 lets you request a personal hearing with a representative from the VA. You can choose from three hearing types:
- Travel board hearing: Testifying in person in front of a Veterans Law Judge at your local VA regional office.
- Videoconference hearing: Testifying in front of a Veterans Law Judge in Washington, D.C., via teleconference from your VA regional office.
- Washington, D.C., hearing: Traveling to Washington, D.C., to testify in front of a Veterans Law Judge in person.
No matter which option you choose, you get to present your case to a Veterans Law Judge. But depending on your unique situation, there might be advantages to choosing one type of hearing over the others, or no hearing at all. Hearings are not always necessary. Our team will go over the details of your case and determine the best way to proceed.
How long does it take to receive a decision after I file my VA Form 9?
There is no set timetable for receiving a decision. After you submit your VA Form 9, a few things happen. Either the Board of Veterans’ Appeals reviews your submission, or you present it in person at a hearing. At that point, the Board has a few options. It can grant your appeal, deny it, or send it back to the regional office for additional development in something called a remand.
The more thorough and organized your VA Form 9 is, the faster the VA can review it and render a decision. The VA attorneys at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD can help. Call today for a consultation: 401-331-6300.
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