ARE YOU MENTALLY AND EMOTIONALLY PREPARED TO FILE YOUR CLAIM?
FACT! NOT EVERYONE WILL REACH 100%
1. Keeping it Real, Not Every Veteran Has a Pathway to 100%.
When being evaluated for a VA disability, it's possible to be assigned a percentage ranging from 0 percent to 100 percent. Those with multiple service-connected issues have greater potential. Otherwise, there's no guaranteed method of achieving 100%. This is particularly hard to swallow for veterans who are currently 80% and 90% because they can see the finish line. To reach 100%, can require, an additional 60% to 70% to reach the goal of 100%. This means, that unless the veteran has multiple conditions that can be rated, appealed, or by secondary conditions, they may have exhausted all potential for reaching 100% VA disability.
2. Be Humble About The Process, The VA Has No Clue Who You Are.
It is no secret that the VA has no clue about who you are or what happened to you during your service; they care even less about your race, rank, top-secret job, or political affiliation. Collectively over the past 70 years, no administration has done enough to keep its promises to our nation's veterans; they've all fallen short, don't let this be your achilles heel; the process works the same for all of us.
3. I Never Had The Opportunity to go to Sick Call
Due to the nature of our service, many of us failed to seek care for an injury or illness for one or more conditions due to the stigma of not being able to carry out our duties or being seen as weak and fear of reprisal; this kept many of us from seeking care for conditions we still suffer from today. Although this is true for many of us, the sooner you get over it, you concentrate on gathering evidence to prove your claim. Writing a statement for each condition is s must, so is seeking care for a diagnosis and treatment to establish continuity of care. This process can take 6 to 12 months and is based on appointment availability, even longer for specialty clinic appointments. Be careful not to fall asleep here; you have the most work to do.
4. If you haven't Googled or researched your conditions
You need to get familiar with your disabilities, you are already behind on your claim. Not investigating your VA disability limits your ability to discuss possible causes or potential secondary conditions with your PCP and your VA disability advocate, costing you to lose potential compensation and secondary connections; no one knows you better than you.
5. Don't Count Your Chickens Before They Hatch - There's no appropriate or right answer to the following question, and whoever tells you differently is being disingenuous: you should be prepared to wait 6-18 months for a decision; if your claim needs to be appealed, expect another 7-18 months for a decision. If you're counting on the speedy processing of your claim to avoid a financial situation, be patient don't set yourself up with expectations for things out of your control; this l will cause you unnecessary stress. Neither the VA nor your advocate can predict this information, so it's best to be patient.
How long will my claim take from start to finish?
How will the VA rate my claim?
Do you think the VA will approve my claim?
When will the VA schedule my compensation & pension Exams?
Now that my exams are complete how long will it take the VA to make a decision?
The VA is often backlogged. Expect constant delays in the timely processing of your claim. Be aware that your claim will be denied, underrated, and appealed several times before approval. The VA does try to process all claims within the suggested time frame; however, some situations affect these efforts.
Delays in third-party exams
Covid and other national disasters
Internal technical Issues
Most of all, The lack of participation on your part
6. Another Claim Killer
Not knowing how to talk to your Primary Care Physician (PCP) is a massive disconnect for most. Veterans actively involved in their healthcare have a greater chance of approval. In the past, the patient‐doctor relationship was one‐directional, the doctor typically took the lead, and the patient followed. Today, this relationship is a partnership, and your PCP can help you establish a diagnosis for your condition by referring you to specialty clinics, labs, physical therapy, and testing. Taking an active role in your healthcare can help you get the best care possible from your doctor. If you don't discuss your in-service injuries or illnesses with your PCP, they'll have no knowledge of its connection to your service unless you tell them don't assume they know; it will hurt your claim. If you believe it's crucial, speak up and discuss it.
Denied because you don't have a current diagnosis for the in-service injury or illness
Denied because there's no record of treatment and you failed to consistently seek care for the condition
Not all conditions require consistent hospital visits, some conditions can be self-treated with over-the-counter medication or rest. If you're filing a claim for it, you should report this information to your doctor so it can document in your medical file; If you self-treat, you should keep a personal record or medical diary
7. Why Does The VA Keep Sending Me to Exams?
Very few veterans have all the necessary information to win their claim successfully. If it's been more than two years since your separation from the service, it's safe to say your medical records, diagnosis, and treatment history are outdated. The VA will want to assure itself that your condition continues to be chronic or persistent in nature before rating your VA disability.
8. Never sign or discuss your claim with any phone agent, what you say can and will be used as part of your exam; so if you don't have a strong grip on the details of your claim, as the VA Disability Advocate first. Checking on the status of your claim is totally fine, still, be careful what you say, it can
The VA Disability Advocates Main Office is Located in Las Vegas, NV. We Represent Veterans throughout the United States. 702-209-5722