apply for veterans benefits

Steps to Apply for Veterans Benefits through the VA

The VA has outlined eight steps that you must follow to apply for veterans benefits. While the process may seem relatively standard, each case that submitted to the VA is unique, meaning approval times and procedures may vary on a case-to-case basis.

  1. Claim Is Received - After sending your veterans benefits application online or through the mail, you will receive confirmation from the VA that your application has been received.
  2. Claim Is under Review - Once your claim has been received, it will be assigned to a representative from the VA. This representative is tasked with the responsibility of determining if all the evidence needed to support your claim has been provided. If additional material is required, your application will move on to the next step, if not your application will be permitted to move on to step 5 of the application process.
  3. Gathering of Evidence - If the VA representative assigned to your claim determines that your application is in need of additional evidence he or she may require you or other individuals associated with your claim to provide evidence to support your disability.
  4. Review of Evidence - In this stage the VA will review all the evidence you have provided and determine if more documented evidence is needed. If more evidence will be needed to support your claim, it will be sent back to step 3 of the process.
  5. Decision Preparation - In this step a VA representative will begin preparing for a decision to be made on your application. They may begin filling out the required paperwork for your claim or ask you to provide more evidence.
  6. Pending Decision – Once your claim reaches this step, the recommendation made on your claim will be reviewed and a decision will be reached. Similar to the previous step, if claims representatives feel additional claims evidence is needed, they may move your claim to a previous step in the process.
  7. Notification Preparation - When your disability claim is done pending, a packet will be prepared outlining the details of the VA’s decision.
  8. Decision Completion – This is the final step in the VA disability benefits application process. The package detailing the VA’s decision concerning your claim will be sent to you through the mail.

Many veterans find the application process frustrating. The paperwork is often complicated, and denied applications take a heavy toll, both emotionally and financials. Veterans often cannot afford delayed benefits and struggle to find the strength to appeal their denied claims.

If you need  help with your application or if you have been denied, you may qualify for legal representation. Click the button below to see if you pre-qualify for a no-cost legal consultation with an attorney or advocate in your area.

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