Applying for VA benefits is a complicated process, so it’s easy to make a mistake or two. Here are five common mistakes vets make when applying for benefits.
1) Lack of evidence- When making a claim for a service-connected disability, it is vital that you provide ample evidence to the VA. Some claims, such as PTSD, are hard to prove so be aware of the specific forms and documentation needed to validate your claim. If you’re applying for a higher rating than you were previously granted, you’ll have to provide proof to explain your request for increased rating.
2) Missing deadlines- The clock is always ticking when you apply or appeal for VA benefits. The VA has set up deadlines every step of the way, and they take it very serious when you miss them. Always make sure you understand how much time you have to complete your application or appeal.
3) Not proving your disability is service related- Similar to the first point, it’s vital that you prove your disability is a direct result of your service. This can be tricky if you’ve been out of the service for a while but are just now developing a disability. Having the proper documentation from a medical professional is critical.
4) Letting the VA do all the work- The VA receives thousands of claims every year so you have to make yours stand out. While the VA has a duty to help vets by gathering information and sending you to a physical, you can’t rely on them to build your case for you.
5) Not hiring a VA lawyer if your claim is denied- If the VA denies your original claim, don’t be discouraged, it happens to a lot of people. The best thing to do after your claim is denied is to call an experienced VA benefits attorney. Jan Dils deals with the VA every day and knows how to build your case in the most effective way.
If you have questions about an appeal or need help applying, call Jan for a free consultation. 877-526-3455.