Expedited VA Claim: How to Fast Track Your VA Disability Claim
Maura Black: Hi everyone. Thank you so much for tuning in today to CCK Live Under Five. I’m Maura Black. I’m a managing attorney here at CCK, and today we’re discussing ways to expedite your claims and to fast-track your case at the VA.
I know that this is important information for many of you out there who have been subject to VA’s delays, so please pay attention and we hope this information is helpful. There are multiple situations in which you can apply for expeditious treatment of your claims or appeals, but they’re very specific. So, there’s a need to fall into one of the following categories that we’re going to discuss in order to have your case expedited at the VA.
First of all, veterans should know that if you meet one of the following criteria that I’m going to touch on, you’ll need to submit a priority processing request via VA Form 20-10207. That’s an important thing to note, that there is a form associated with asking for expeditious treatment of your claims that are pending before the VA.
The first primary reason that would entitle you to expeditious treatment is financial hardship and homelessness. You can request to expedite a VA disability claim if you’re experiencing extreme financial hardship. And useful evidence to prove that you are in this type of situation would include eviction notices or overdue bill notices. If a person is homeless, VA can expedite their claim for benefits and afford them priority processing. Again, you will just want to be submitting any documentation that you can showing that status.
The second way to have your case expedited is through advanced age. It is important to note that the VA Regional Offices and the Board of Veterans’ Appeals use different ages to show that you meet this criteria. The Regional Office level will expedite your case if you are 85 years of age or older, but at the Board of Veterans’ Appeals, you are entitled to advancement on the Board’s dockets if you’re 75 years of age or older. So, 85 for the Regional Offices and 75 for the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.
A third way to have your case expedited is if you’re experiencing terminal illness. Again, you will need to submit evidence of this status, preferably medical evidence, showing that you do have a terminal illness and that your condition is terminal. But, VA is instructed to prioritize claims if those are your circumstances.
A fourth way to have your case expedited is if you have a diagnosis of ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease. You will have to submit a diagnosis, that’s definitely a theme. VA is going to be looking for evidence speaking to all of these points. But if you do have this diagnosis and can submit documentation of it, that is a way that VA will be responsive and expedite your case and handle your claims more quickly.
A fifth way to have your cases expedited, your claims and appeals decided more quickly, is if you are very seriously ill or injured during military operations. This one’s a little bit confusing because most disabled veterans have a very serious illness or disability and have an injury in service. But, it doesn’t just require that you were injured in service and that you now have a disability. It has to be a very serious injury or an illness during military operations that was likely to result in a military discharge. So, service personnel records are great evidence that you can submit to show that you experienced something like this. And additionally, a medical discharge showing that you experienced something severe in service that warranted discharge is helpful to have your case expedited with this parameter.
A couple more. A sixth way to have your claims and appeals fast-tracked is if you’re a former prisoner of war (POW). Those persons are eligible to have their claims expedited as long as they can submit a copy of military personnel records showing their former POW status.
And finally, Medal of Honor or Purple Heart Award recipients can apply to have their claims expedited by submitting a copy of their military personnel records, such as the DD214 or any other information indicating that the veteran had received that award.
So, that’s about seven ways to have your case advanced. They are very specific, like I said before, and submitting evidence showing all of these things is important.
We do have this information at our blog, CCK-law.com, so if you want to review it, please feel free to go ahead. Thank you so much for tuning in today, we hope you have a great day.
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