you told that your claim is in the decision phase? Of course it
is...EVERY claim is in the decision phase from the moment it comes in
the door of that impregnable fortress the VA calls a Regional Office.
There is no system in place that allows you to view the status of your claim or any progress it may be making.
of the places VA provides like IRIS, the toll free number, that
Ebenefits site and so on don't work. Those things do not go to your
Regional Office where your claims folder (C-File) is located, they go to
Those are provided as distractions to keep you
occupied while VA operates in nearly total chaos. They don't know where
your folder is on a given day. They aren't going to take time to find it
for you and tell you anything that's happening.
VA uses the
rationale that if they opened up phone lines to veterans so that you
could talk to them, you and 1,000,000 others would probably call and
bitch about it every day.
Time taken to reassure you is time taken away from working on your claim.
If you have to know the status of your claim because you are in financial trouble, you have already made your first mistake.
is not responsible for your financial woes. VA does not approve
benefits because you need the money. VA approves benefits only because
you have a service connected condition that meets the criteria to be
awarded a benefit.
There is nothing at all in VA disability law
that tells the VA that they must consider that you haven't been able to
pay for the new plasma screen TV so they should move your claim ahead of
How To Track Your Claim (Continued)
The system is really very simple.
file a claim. If you did it the smart way, you sent your claim in
yourself and provided all the data VA needed. You mailed it using
Certified Mail and Return Receipt Requested.
You got that little green postcard back so you know that your VA Regional Office got your claim. It made it into the mail room!
From the mail room the claim is triaged to the appropriate stations. It may go to compensation, education, home loans and so on.
gets in line. The line is huge. There are 57 VA Regional Offices and
there are over one million claims in the backlog. The VA receives more
claims each day than it resolves. The backlog grows every day.
claim is in the line in the order it was received. You get no priority
because you need the money...everybody needs the money.
claim may be headed to a section where 10 people are working. As each
one closes a claims folder and sends out the award letter, he or she
makes room for the next folder in that long line.
There's no mystery to it. Your claim is not tracked daily or weekly or
even monthly. It's just sitting there in line waiting its turn on the
desk of a rater.
That means you should plan your living expenses
accordingly. Don't rely on VA money coming to you next month so you can
make the mortgage payment. Plan and spend as if you will never get any
VA money...you may not.
The MMWR isn't accurate. The numbers are an attempt to look good.
isn't always a good indicator because of "brokering" claims to other
Regional Offices. If your claim is way behind and your VARO is at max
output, your claim may be at another VARO for processing there. Nobody
will tell you about that or just how it works.
Be patient. Take a hobby like reading War and Peace in the original language.
Your claim will be done when it's done and no sooner.