April 14, 2014

VA Claims Backlog Update from DAV Convention

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President Obama announces a reduction in VA claims backlog

The President, addressing the annual convention of Disabled American Veterans (DAV) this weekend, pointed out that backlogged VA disability claims have dropped 20% this year. However, those figures don’t acknowledge that the numbers of claims unaddressed are staggering. According to CNN, a recent report from the Center for Investigative Reporting found that since 2009, the number of veterans waiting more than a year for their benefits has skyrocketed, from 11,000 in 2009 to 245,000 in December 2012, a jump of more than 2,000%.

The average wait time to have a VA claim be addressed after a veteran files a claim is 273 days. For veterans filing their first claim, including Iraq and Afghanistan vets, the wait is up to 327 days, nearly two months longer. In big cities such as New York, veterans could wait for almost two years. CIR analyzed the data obtained from a Freedom of Information Act request. Claims that have been pending for more than 125 days are characterized by the VA as “backlog.” VA’s goal is to eliminate the backlog of compensation claims pending for more than 125 days by the end of 2015.

 

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