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How Can I Speed Up My Veterans Disability Claim?

Published on July 20th, 2020

The VA disability claims process is notorious for taking a long time. The good news is that the new appeals system that went into effect last year seems to be working, with the VA reporting that it takes on average 80 days for it to issue a ratings decision. But behind this average number, there are still many cases that may take years to resolve. So you may be wondering if there is a way to qualify for the expedited processing of your VA claim.

Under current regulations, you can request priority status for your case if you are terminally ill, over the age of 75, homeless, or experiencing extreme financial hardship. If you fall into one of these categories, you can, and should, include this extra evidence in your application. If your claim is rejected, the veterans disability lawyers of Jackson & MacNichol can help. Call us today at 1(800) 524-3339 for a free consultation about how we can appeal your case.

You Can Request Faster Processing for Your Case – If You Have Proof

The VA grants expedited processing under the following circumstances:

  • Extreme financial hardship–If you have bank statements, utility bills, food stamp records, foreclosure documents, eviction notices or anything else that demonstrates that you are indigent, you should include it in your initial application for benefits. Note that temporarily falling on hard times, or a decrease in your usual standard of living is generally not enough to qualify.
  • Homelessness–Giving the VA proof that you lack a home should result in your claim getting priority status. You don’t need to live in the street. If you are now residing in a shelter, halfway house, or even a hotel, you may qualify as homeless.
  • Advanced age–The VA gives priority to seniors, depending on which stage of the process their claim is in. At the regional office level, priority status is given to those above the age of 85. But at the Board of Veterans Appeals, or BVA, you can get priority status for your case if you are over the age of 75.
  • Terminal illness–If you are now in hospice care, or if you have been diagnosed with a terminal illness, you may apply for expedited processing. If you suffer from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, the VA will expedite your claim automatically.

Just because you qualify for expedited processing does not guarantee that your case will move fast. There is always the possibility that a clerical mistake, a lack of evidence, or a complicated legal issue could delay or even stall your case. That being said, if you have the opportunity to obtain priority for your case, you should take advantage of it.

Call a Veterans Benefits Lawyer Today

Every case is different, so it’s impossible to predict how long the claims or appeals process might take in your case–even if you qualify for expedited processing. But if there’s one certainty about the VA disability compensation process, it’s that a lawyer can increase your chances of success on appeal. If you received a low disability rating, or your compensation claim was denied altogether, the veterans benefits lawyers of Jackson & MacNichol can help you fight back. For a free consultation about your appeal, call us today at 1(800) 524-3339.


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