Once you file your application for VA disability benefits, one of your top questions will probably be, “How long will it take to start receiving monthly benefits?” Unfortunately, the time period for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to make a decision on a Veteran’s eligibility can vary widely. According to the VA website, in April of 2022, the average number of days to complete a disability-related claim was 152 days which is nearly 5 months. In our experience, it can take anywhere from months to a year or longer for an application to be approved.
Factors That Can Affect the Time it Takes to Begin Receiving VA Disability Benefits
The VA estimates that it takes them 94 days to review a VA disability application. However, many cases take much longer than that. Here are some factors that can shorten or extend the time it takes to reach a decision:
- Type of claim filed. There are many different types of claims filed for disability benefits, and some take longer than others to process. For example, if you file your claim under the “fully developed claim” program, you may receive a quicker decision. However, if you must appeal a denial of benefits or are reopening your claim, it could take longer to obtain the evidence you need and for the VA to review it.
- Number of disabilities claimed. The number of disabilities or injuries you are claiming benefits for, and their complexity, can affect how long the application process will take. If you have numerous, complex injuries, it will take the VA longer to make a decision.
- Evidence needed. If you do not include all the evidence necessary to support your application or the VA requests additional documents, this could slow down the VA review process.
- Field office location. The time period can also be affected by the field office where you file your claim. If you live near one that serves more Veterans, it could take longer for the VA to reach a decision than if you lived near an office that serves fewer Veterans.
In some situations, you can ask that your claim be expedited. For example, if you suffer from a terminal disease, are 77 years old or older, or are suffering severe financial hardship, such as possible homelessness, you can ask that your application be fast-tracked.
What You Can Do to Make Your Application Review Process Go Faster
If you want your application to be decided as quickly as possible, you should retain an experienced VA disability lawyer in Roswell to help you collect the evidence you need to support your disability claim and to file your application, so it is done properly. He can also follow up with the VA to be certain that they are reviewing the claim and can provide them with any additional information they need to approve your claim. To learn how we can help, call our office to schedule a free consultation today.