Late Breaking News
VA Tackles Claims
- Categorized in: 2013 Issues, Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), News, September 2013
For its part, VA continued to roll out new initiatives related to the claims process.
On the day that the president made his speech in Orlando, VA announced that it had formed a new partnership and pilot program with the American Bar Association (ABA) and the Legal Services Corporation (LSC) aimed at making it easier for unrepresented veterans to receive assistance developing their claims for disability pay.
According to VA, the pilot will offer pro bono attorney assistance to veterans with claims pending at the St. Petersburg, FL, and Chicago Regional Offices who do not currently have an authorized representative. Veterans with claims pending at other VA regional offices may also be considered for the pilot, if warranted, according to the announcement.
“The ABA is proud to take the lead in connecting veterans with pro bono attorneys who will help them receive the aid our nation owes them for their selfless courage,” said Laurel Bellows, president of the American Bar Association.
Last month, VA also announced that veterans who file an original Fully Developed Claim (FDC) for service-connected disability compensation could be entitled to up to one-year of retroactive disability benefits.
“VA strongly encourages veterans to work with Veterans Service Organizations to file fully developed claims and participate in this initiative, since it means more money in eligible veterans’ pockets simply by providing VA the information it needs up front,” said Undersecretary for Benefits Allison A. Hickey. “At the same time, it helps reduce the inventory of pending claims by speeding the process.”