My Personal Experience With Getting A VA Decision – What To Expect And How Long It Took Me

As a military veteran, one of the most important processes in receiving benefits is going through the VA (Veterans Affairs) decision. This decision determines what benefits and compensation you are eligible for based on your service-connected disabilities. From my personal experience, I can say that it can be a long and sometimes frustrating process. In this article, I will share my journey with getting a VA decision and provide some tips on what to expect and how long it took me.

What is a VA Decision?

A VA decision is made by the Department of Veterans Affairs after reviewing all the evidence related to your service-connected disabilities. This includes medical records, service records, and any other evidence provided by the veteran. The decision will determine if a disability is considered service-connected and the level of severity, which then determines the amount of compensation and benefits one may receive.

My Experience with Getting a VA Decision

My journey with getting a VA decision started when I separated from the military in 2018. At that time, I had already submitted my initial claim for service-connected disabilities through the VA eBenefits website. After submitting my claim, I received a letter stating that my claim was received and would be reviewed by the VA.

Gathering Evidence

The VA then requested me to attend a Compensation and Pension (C&P) exam, which is an examination by a VA healthcare provider to assess the severity of my disabilities. This was followed by several requests for medical records from both my military service and private providers. I had to actively coordinate with my providers to ensure that all my relevant medical records were submitted to the VA.

Processing Time

From submitting my initial claim in 2018 to receiving a decision, it took approximately two years. During this time, I received multiple correspondence from the VA requesting more evidence or scheduling additional C&P exams. It was definitely a waiting game and required patience on my part.

Receiving the Decision

Finally, in 2020, I received a notification that my VA decision was ready for review. I logged into the eBenefits website and saw that I was granted service-connection for all of my claimed disabilities. The decision also included the level of severity for each disability and the amount of compensation I would receive per month.

Tips for Going Through the VA Decision Process

Based on my experience, here are some tips to help you navigate through the VA decision process:

Be proactive in gathering evidence and submitting it to the VA. This can help speed up the process and avoid any delays in your decision.

Keep track of all correspondence from the VA and respond promptly to any requests for information or exams.

Be patient. The VA decision process can take some time, but know that it is important to have a thorough review of all evidence before a decision is made.

In conclusion, my personal experience with getting a VA decision was a long and sometimes frustrating process. However, I am grateful for the benefits and compensation I received as a result. It is important to be proactive and patient during this process, and hopefully, these tips will help make it smoother for others going through the same journey. So, if you are a veteran currently going through the VA decision process, hang in there and know that it will all be worth it in the end.

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