Did the VA deny your VA disability claim? Are you wondering what step comes after a denial? The VA makes the process of receiving VA disability complicated. As a result, you must understand how to appeal your denial. In this blog post, we will discuss how to prepare for a Supplemental Claim. Remember, denial is a normal part of a VA claim.
I Just Got A Denial Letter In The Mail! Now What?
Thankfully, the VA is required to spell out why they denied your claim. Spend some time studying that letter. The VA has an exact reason that they denied you. Claims require service-connection, nexus, and a current diagnosis (with symptoms). As a result, your job is win your claim, and you need to see which path to follow.
The VA plans on you quitting after reading that denial letter. The VA website reports that they deny between 70 and 80 percent of VA claims. Remember, the VA wins if you give up.
You were a member of the greatest military in history. Act like it. We don’t take denied for an answer.
Supplemental Claim & Alternatives
The VA has three options for appealing your denial. Your first option is to file a supplemental claim. Alternatively, the second option is to file with the Board of Appeals. Finally, the third option is to file a Higher Lever Review (HLR). The supplemental claim is what we will cover today.
Supplemental Claim: Waiting Period?
There is a persistent myth that says you should wait a year before filing a supplemental claim. However, that is not accurate. You can file a supplemental claim two different ways.
The first way occurs when you are filing a claim again. For example, veteran filed in 2014 for radiculopathy, but the claim was denied. The veteran can file again in 2022 for radiculopathy, but it must be a supplemental claim. The claim’s effective date would be 2022.
However, the second way to file is what we are discussing today. Supplemental claims are a form of appeal. The same veteran files for radiculopathy in March of 2022, but the VA denies for lack of a diagnosis. The veteran can obtain a diagnosis, and file a supplemental claim in September of 2022. If approved, the veteran’s effective date would still be March of 2022.
Supplemental Claim Versus Higher Level Review
We discussed when to use a Higher Level Review earlier this year. A Higher Level Review is effective when the VA missed something and you need them to look again. However, you are not allowed to submit new evidence for a HLR. As a result, a supplemental claim is used when you made a mistake or left out a key piece of evidence.
The denial letter will state what you are missing: service-connection, nexus, or a current diagnosis/symptoms.
You will use a supplemental claim to allow you to submit new and relevant medical evidence. Are you missing a current diagnosis? Go see a doctor, and get that diagnosis. Are you missing the nexus? Look at getting a nexus letter. However, you can also show nexus through buddy letters and continuous care.
The VA acknowledges how easy it is to miss something during a claim. As a result, the supplemental claim is your opportunity to correct your mistake.
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