Every month, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reports statistical data on VA disability benefits claims, both active and backlogged. Get a closer look at how these numbers changed over the past month in our August 2016 veterans disability benefits statistics summary and analysis below.
August 2016 Veterans Disability Benefits Statistics: Claims Inventory Status
The monthly inventory status report generated by the Veterans Benefits Administration includes pension and compensation claims awaiting a decision from the VA. As of August 1, 2016, there were 376,797 claims that fell under this category. This number increased by just over 5,500 claims since the first week of July. The August 2016 veterans disability benefits claim increase is about half of the rise in numbers we saw in July, but overall, they’ve remained below 400,000 per month since September 2015.
- As of August 1, 2016: 376,797
- As of July 2, 2016: 371,153
- Difference: 5,644
- Daily churn: +282.2 claims
August 2016 Veterans Disability Benefits Statistics: Claims Backlog Status
Backlogged claims include any application that’s been waiting on a decision from the VA for more than 125 days. As of August 1st, there were 75,794 backlogged claims still pending. This shows an unexpected increase in the claims backlog numbers, reversing a positive trend over the last few months.
- As of August 1, 2016: 75,794
- As of July 2, 2016: 74,374
- Difference: +1,420
- Daily churn: +71 claims added to backlog
Unfortunately, it appears that the backlog clearance numbers from July were essentially negated during the last 30-day period. The numbers have risen again and are close to the backlog statistics we saw back during the first week of June. In fact, these statistics align with those last seen in December 2015, but are still significantly lower than its peak in 2013. Just three years ago, the backlog included over 600,000 claims, and vets were waiting a year or more for a case determination. Overall, the VA has kept its backlog numbers steadily below 100,000 for nearly a year. After examining the August 2016 veterans disability benefits reports, it appears that the VA’s current backlog-clearing efforts are a net positive for both current and potential applicants.
Can An Attorney Help?
Before you file your claim, consider getting help from a VA-accredited attorney. Attorneys with experience filing VA benefits claims know how to help you gather medical evidence, check your current case status and file an appeal on your behalf, if needed. Working on a contingency basis means that you won’t pay any legal fees unless you’re awarded benefits. Click on the button below to check your eligibility and connect with legal representation today.
Megan Kelly is a former blogger and copywriter for LeadingResponse.