Understanding the Claims Process for Veterans Disability Benefits

We’ve created this video to help you understand the process of filing a claim for disability benefits with the VA. There are 8 distinct steps to the process:

  1. Filing an initial claim. This can be done either online or through regular mail.
  2. Once received, your application will be assigned to a Veterans Service Representative. They review your application and determine whether any additional documentation is needed.
  3. Your representative then gathers any required evidence. They may request evidence of your disability from you, your doctor, or anyone else who may be able to contribute.
  4. Next, the VSR will review all collected evidence.
  5. This phase is called the “Preparation for Decision” phase, where your representative will recommended to either approve or deny your application.
  6. The recommended action is reviewed, and a determination is made.
  7. The VSR prepares a “decision packet” which will include the decision that was made, along with an explanation of how they arrived at their decision.
  8. Finally, your decision packet is mailed to you.

From submitting your application to receiving your decision, the average wait time is about one year. However, that time can vary wildly based on the complexity of your case. The VA reports that about 75% of initial applications are denied. Learn more by watching this video. If your claim is denied, learn about your appeal rights by contacting Cuddigan Law at (402) 933 5405

Sean D. Cuddigan
SSA and VA Disability Attorney in Omaha, Nebraska