How Do You Apply For Social Security Disability Benefits?
Information on social security disability benefits

8 Museums You Can Virtually Tour Right Now
Visit famous institutions in Paris, Amsterdam,

and more—without leaving home.

Website Monitoring Tool

Regional Offices' Public Contact Closures

​The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) Regional Offices will be closed to the public starting March 19.
Regional offices will remain open, but will no longer accept walk-ins for claims assistance, scheduled appointments, counseling and other in-person services.

Coronavirus distancing: Don't forget about veterans.

For them, loneliness can be deadly.
Legislation already exists to get our service members

the help they need through animal companions.

We must make sure it passes and soon.

Misuse of Certain Nonopioid Analgesics on the Rise
Gabapentin, Baclofen May Be Seen

as Opioid Alternatives

The NPRC
Military Records DD 214

Announcing the Veterans Benefits Banking Program
A partnership between VA and the

Association of Military Banks of America

Your Health

Urgent Care Centers

One of the most important benefits you have today is

the authorization to use an urgent care center

near to you. But first, you have to

print your paperwork

to take with you. Don't wait until you need this

benefit to prepare for it. Read this now,

print your papers and be prepared!

Google Tracks You

and we don't.
​DuckDuckGo apps block

Google's hidden trackers.
​The world needs an alternative

Robert Wilkie  <robert.wilkie@va.gov>  ​855-948-2311

One More Reason You Need An Independent Medical Opinion

VETERANS BENEFITS ADMINISTRATION

Accuracy of Claims Decisions Involving Conditions of the Spine

A coronavirus outbreak aboard an aircraft carrier is one of

the possibilities facing the US military

How would the Navy react if a sailor aboard a large ship such as an aircraft carrier tested positive for the coronavirus?

Training book used for VA

'How To Lie With Statistics'

Help fight Medicare fraud

​Con artists may try to get your Medicare

Number or personal information so they can steal

your identity and commit Medicare fraud.

INN TO THE FOREST

​Lodging & Camping in southern Illinois with access to the Shawnee National​

We offer lodging, camping,

​stabling, corral, pasture,

access to a hunting lease and

discounts for America's

military veterans!

Veteran Disability Claims 

Nexus and IMO Letters

Call before visiting your VA facility

Free Veteran resources through PATRIOTlink

and Coronavirus updates

VA Releases Survivors Quick Start Guide
Reference guide to help during final

arrangements planning

What You Should Know about Disability and Debt

There Are Protections...When it comes to debt collection, disability income enjoys special status.

Welcome to the KnowVA Knowledge Base

Locate information more quickly and efficiently

Traveling?

​How to ensure seamless care while traveling

Florida veterans health centers moving to virtual appointments to combat coronavirus

The goal is to allow veterans

to stay home and avoid exposure

How To Get Urgent Care For Free

If you have any symptoms

DO NOT DELAY

You are authorized urgent care but you must be prepared!

How Divorce, Alimony, and Child Support

Affect Veterans' VA Benefits
VA benefits can be garnished only for spousal

or child support, and only under certain conditions.

How to file a VA disability claim
Find out how to file a claim for disability compensation

or increased disability compensation.

John Prine, One of America’s Greatest Songwriters, Dead at 73
Grammy-winning singer who combined literary genius with a common touch succumbs to coronavirus complications


His song, Sam Stone, is one of the most poignant and touching war stories ever told.

Written about the Vietnam era soldier, the message affects every veteran.

RIP

You Ready???

Are you aware that Amazon will deliver groceries to you? And often enough they beat in-store prices?

Don't worry that you forgot the dog food.

Shop on!

Jim's Mailbag

Your 2020 Guide to Social Security Benefits
Whether you’re claiming Social Security in 2020, have been collecting benefits for years, or are still decades away, here’s what you need to know about this critically important retirement program.

Marijuana Accessories

Do You Need Help Right Now?

Your state runs County Veterans Service Offices

for you and they're working today.

An IMO by an expert  often makes the difference!

How To File a VA Disability Appeal
You have the right to appeal any benefits decision made by the Veterans Benefits Administration. The VA appeals process is set in law and is different from other judicial appeals processes. Find out how to file an appeal.

Food Delivery Services

The apps

CraveBox Healthy Care Package

Whole Foods Market

Schwans

​Grocery and Gourmet Food Store at Amazon​

Food Delivery Online - Deliver Near me All-in-one

Medical Malpractice

Download VA benefit letters
To receive some benefits, Veterans need a letter

proving their status. 

For Better Brain Health, Preserve Your Hearing
Hearing loss is the largest modifiable risk factor for developing dementia, exceeding that of smoking, high blood pressure, lack of exercise and social isolation.

Dog Food

Drew Early   Veterans Law Attorney
Graduate of the US Military Academy, West Point

Adjunct Professor - Emory University Law School
20 Years Army Service - Airborne - Explosive Ordnance Badge
Free Case Review - Nationwide Representation
BVA/DRO Appeals - Fiduciary & Caregiver Issues, Trusts, Wills
Appeals of Veterans & Survivor Claims
(770) 939-1939

Florida Veterans

Medical Marijuana Card
Tell the doctor you saw it on VAWatchdog

and ask about veterans discounts!​

Where should we retire?

We get $2,470 a month from Social Security

and want a warm, friendly city near the ocean.

VA launches online patient portal for veterans

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

announced the launch of an online patient portal

this month that will provide service veterans

with digital access to their patient statements.

Why Getting a Diagnosis Matters

​A diagnosis does so much more than get noted in your medical history. It also can help you apply for programs like Social Security Disability and medical marijuana cards. And maybe even more importantly, it can help you explain yourself to friends, colleagues and family.

The Next, Terrible Phase of This Crisis
After cancellation comes triage

VA Health Care Public Health Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)

​What you should know
VA is working closely with The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other federal partners,
monitoring an outbreak of Novel Coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China.

Be a  VA  Volunteer.

I did that for years & it's

the best thing ever. Get 

into the belly of the beast.

VA  loves  volunteers!

Do You Need

Medical Care

RIGHT NOW?
​You are already authorized

to use an urgent

care clinic!

Answers to your questions on stimulus checks

Are seniors on Social Security or

veterans on disability eligible?

Dr. David Anaise

Physician - Surgeon - Veteran

Veterans Law Attorney

The VAWatchdog

doesn't ask for donations, we don't have fees, we don't ask you to register...you can't find a way to give us your money. We're supported by advertising. When you shop via the VAWatchdog,

we'll get a small piece of that.

You get top quality at a good price and you support our mission.

Thank you!!!

​Create or update your will fast / 100% free

Make your will with FreeWill today

Healthcare directives, 

proxies, living wills and durable financial power of attorney.

All are free to use.

Veterans get more banking options,

under new VA partnership

Some veterans may have better access to banking now, through a partnership between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Association of Military Banks of America.

38 CFR Book C 

Schedule for Rating Disabilities

Credit Card Payment Due?

​​Which Consumer Lenders Are (and Aren’t) Helping the Most - American Express (cards), Capital One (auto loans and cards) and JPMorgan Chase said they would allow people to skip payments, interest free. 

Owe VA Money??? 

​​Submit A Waiver Request

Untreated Hearing Loss Linked

To Loneliness And Isolation For Seniors

Did you know that hearing loss and tinnitus are the

most commonly rated veterans disabilities? Did you

know that hearing loss and tinnitus can cause

other secondary conditions, particularly mental

health problems like depression and loneliness?

Chronic Pain Is an Impossible Problem
A “safe” alternative to opioid painkillers

turns out to be not so safe.

Jim's Mailbag

Jim Strickland is a Vietnam era Army veteran and nationally recognized expert on VA disability benefits

and a member of the Stateside Legal Website Advisory BoardJim's Mailbag, is a regular column where veterans,

servicemembers, and family members can  ask Jim their questions about VA and Social Security disability benefits.  

You can browse all of these Q&As here, and search the Jim's Mailbag archives for helpful answers.

​Roger Hale,  Veterans Law Attorney​​

​Personal Injury Lawyer - Free Consultation For Veterans​
​​Industrial Accidents   Nursing Home Negligence   Car Accidents   ​

Workers Compensation   Veterans Law​     

Pain & Suffering     Emotional & Mental Anguish

(​405) 531-9983

Amazon Is Putting Book Deliveries Into the

Slow Lane Thanks to the Coronavirus
The retail giant is prioritizing household

and medical supplies, and pushing

everything else to the back of the queue.

AT WAR
40 Stories From Women

About Life in the Military​   

"Not Many Women Get

to Do What I Do"

Medical Malpractice - Veterans 1151 Claims

Hodes Milman LLP

​Malpractice Attorneys Helping Veterans Harmed By The VA
​​Veterans Healthcare Rights - Federal Tort Claims -

VA Medical Malpractice Claims, Misdiagnosis, ​Hospital Negligence, Medical Errors
For a review of your VA malpractice case contact our lawyers today.
Our firm serves throughout the nation, 

and is one of the few firms to have specialized experience in VA malpractice cases.
Call Now!  (949) 640-8222​​

PAPER Evidence Records

and Claims All Go Here

​V A Claims Intake Center
PO BOX 4444
JANESVILLE, WI

53547- 4444
Toll Free Fax:

844-531-7818​

Key findings about America’s military veterans

​​The experiences of post-9/11 veterans differ from

those who served in previous eras. Post-9/11

veterans more likely to have been deployed,

seen combat, experienced emotional trauma

Should I file a claim?

Potential VA claims?

​What am I missing in the VA claims process?

​r/VeteransBenefits

Best way to check on a supplemental claim online?

​Confused on what to do with claim.

​Dependent status with education benefits.

​Suing the VA for negligence and malpractice.​​

Veteran Proud

Are You Feeling Overwhelmed

By All The Pandemic News???

Call and talk about

it right now!

You've Arrived at the VAWatchdog Dot Org!
​Welcome Home
We've been keeping veterans informed of news and events important to them since 2005.
You'll find all you need to file your claim and referrals to professionals who can help you when things don't go well. 
What you won't find here is unending chat or opinions from strangers who like to think of themselves as experts. 
Our goal is to ensure that you are awarded the benefits you earned with your service to our country. 

We're here to help you take charge of your benefits, and that is all.

Extra Schedular Rating

​Extra schedular ratings under

38 C.F.R. § 3.321(b)

​How can I get an extra schedular rating?

​To receive an extra schedular rating the veteran

must first show that the veteran’s

conditions result in a disability picture

that is not covered by the schedule of ratings. 

Wounded Warrior Project Veterans Benefits

Trump: “We’ll be cutting” entitlement programs

White House: He didn’t really mean that.
Following his Fox News town hall, Stephanie Grisham and Kellyanne Conway denied that Trump said what he said.

​C&P Service Clinician’s Guide
Scheduled For A C & P???    Filing A Claim?
This is a must read for you!!!​
I've been posting this again and again over the years 
and it's still one of the best ways I know to win 
your case. Published in 2002 the principles and much of 
the verbiage still applies and is in daily use at the VA. 

VA Urgent Care Pharmacy Locations
Find VA-approved urgent care/retail location

pharmacies near a specific

address or ZIP code, or search by VA Facility.

How To File A Claim For VA Disability (and many other) Benefits


How do I file my claim?
You can file online right now.

​Independent Medical Opinions
IMOs - IMEs - Nexus Letters - DBQs
Statements In Support Of Claims - Record Reviews​


In most cases you must prove the claim that you make. If you claim that you injured your knee in basic training but your medical records lack substantive support, you'll likely need the opinion of an expert who is experienced in disability medicine. The opinion may come in many forms, the IMO is the most common today. Disability Benefits Questionnaires (DBQs) are required and if you don't offer your DBQ completed by an expert of your choosing, VA will have one completed for you by their examiner at a C & P exam.


You may guess which will be more favorable to you.


Statements In Support Of Claims or Buddy Letters have little value unless they are very specific by a credible witness. A credible witness might be a battle buddy who was with you when you took mortar fire and you witnessed violent death up close and personal. Your mom, your spouse, your pastor and high school teachers who support you because you've always been a good citizen aren't credible witnesses. What's your spouse going to say? VA knows all about bias, even if it isn't outright. 
You need an expert. If you submit a favorable IMO with your claim, you are much more likely to prevail with little or no fuss and no appeal!    Go for it!

​​How To File A VA Claim​


We are a DIY site.


You DO NOT need any sort of "VA rep", VSO or anyone else to help you.
If you need help with forms, ask a family member.
You are not allowed to use a lawyer unless you're appealing a denied claim.
Filing a disability benefits claim isn't difficult...you CAN DIY.
Take your time.  Follow the instructions.  Be brief, be precise.
You can file electronically or using mail and fax.

Things To Remember When Filing A Disability Claim
The internet has done a lot of wonderful things for humanity, and it has changed the way we do everything.

Filing a VA disability claim is not hard to do. There is no mystery to it.

The VA is not out to get you but it is a badly broken machine and it doesn't function very well.

This means that the burden is on YOU to get your claim filed right the first time.

The goal is to avoid an appeal.

The best way to avoid an appeal is to get an IMO done right now.

More on that as we go along.

We do not believe that you need a "rep" to help you. Most of those people aren't as

smart as you are and all they can do is to help you fill out some forms.

You can do that from your home computer...it just isn't that big of a deal.


Read on, do your homework, file your claim.

Treater, Disability Assessor, or Forensic Expert:
A Trap in Disability Claims

Although this article focuses on mental health disability claims, when you ask your doctor (rather than an independent expert) to help you with your disability claim paperwork, here are many of the reasons the doctor may object. This is a good example of why the VAWatchdog recommends an Independent Medical Opinion to support your claim or appeal.

Thinking of Filing a VA Disability Claim?
Think Again. 

​We Have A Proposal For You To Consider.

​Claims, Denials, NODs & Appeals
The Wheel Just Keeps On Turning
We propose that veterans who are filing claims take charge of the process, avoiding the flawed C & P exam 
report by having their own Independent Medical Opinion and DBQs completed by expert doctors who are 
not employees of the VA. Although this brings about an expense the veteran must bear, we believe that 
any out of pocket expense is an investment toward a faster claims resolution and is thus justified.
​Keep Reading...