In light of the Veteran’s day tomorrow, we would like the briefly discuss an issue that our firm receives countless calls about: VA disability benefits. The many issues the VA experiences when handling the benefits of our veterans is well-documented and often highlighted in the news. While this press and publicity has helped light a needed fire under the VA, there is still more room for improvement and our veterans still need a great deal of guidance and assistance While our firm doesn’t directly handle these types of claims, we have helped many people find the support they need. Passing along this information is important and can assist many people who read our blog in finding the proper source for the help they deserve.
First, I would like to offer a few tips of our own. While the process may be different for private disability, SSDI, and VA disability claims, the proof and information needed is often the same. Make sure you are seeing the proper physician for your condition and that you are following their treatment recommendations. Don’t over-report your symptoms and make sure that you describe all issues in explicit detail. Vagueness and exaggeration just make it easier to poke holes in your claim and find fault with your application. The best advice we can give is to never stop trying and never lose your patience. Anger and frustration are incredibly dangerous to your claim and will only hurt your possibilities in the long run. Following our advice and using some of the resources below should help you in being successful at obtaining the disability benefits you deserve.
While they made not provide some of the specific answers to your personal questions, having a good guide or handbook to help navigate your disability claim is a good idea. They provide a good overview of the process and can help provide a road map for the way your case will be handled and give you a range of solutions to a number of different scenarios. There are two books our firm uses and has recommended to our clients with great success.
- The Veteran’s Survival Guide: How to File and Collect on VA Claims by John D. Roche
- Claim Denied: How to Appeal A VA Denial of Benefits by John D. Roche
Both of these books are by the same author, but handle different aspects of a VA benefit claim. The first book deals with submitting a well-grounded initial claim in the hopes you will never have to see the appeals process. If your claim is already denied, the second book will provide more helpful guidelines for this part of the process. I would recommend purchasing one of these books in addition to using more of the resources below.
Veterans Benefits Network – For more specific questions, or for more individualized help, this forum offers a number of different categories and many very knowledgeable people that can help in your claim.
Hutsky Compensation Calculator – This calculator opens as an Excel document and conforms 100% to the VA compensation calculator.
Schedule of Rating Disabilities – This link provides everything you need to know in order to rate your disability to VA standards.
If you would like more guided help, you can visit groups such as The American Legion or any number of other VA disability advocates to help give you specific advice and assign you an advocate who can make sure you get the benefits you deserve without having to worry and stress constantly about the information needed and the incessant paperwork required to complete your claim.
Again, we would like to thank all members of our military, past and present, for the service they have provided to our country. It is a shame the way the VA disability program is run and the veterans of our armed services deserve a better program. Until this happens, however, resources like the ones above will be necessary to make sure our veterans are treated right when they return from their service.
If you have any more questions about VA disability claims, please call an expert, such as the ones listed in the American Legion link above. If you have questions about how your VA disability benefits may affect your private disability claim, or any other questions about private disability, please give us a call toll-free at (855) 828-4100 or sign up for a free consultation on the right hand side of this page.