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New Bill In Congress to Reform VA Appeals Process


Hi Everyone, As I wait my fate after a DRO hearing (been 16 months) rather then worry about it, I took Broncovet advise that he has given to keep myself busy.  I just came across this bill called the  "Veterans Appeals improvement and Modernization Act".  The bill is expected to pass late summer as it as bi-partisan support (both Democrats and Republicans).  It is expected to speed up and shrink the claims process by creating "three" lanes of appeal.  Lane #1 "Local Higher level Review Lane' would allow a adjudicator to review the same evidence considered by the original processor.  Lane #2 "New Evidence Lane" , veterans can present new evidence for review and have a hearing.  Lane#3 "Board Lane" where jurisdiction is immediately transferred to the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA).  Another factor of the bill is to improve original claim decisions notices so they more clearly inform veterans and advocates of the reason behind original decisions.  This will help determine whether to file an appeal, and which lane to choose.  Congress claims with the new bill they can cut average wait time for final appeal from five years to 125 days!  The only thing that could derail the bill, if member of Congress decide to attach other non popular initiatives on to the bill. They don't feel it will happen.  So late summer is considered the target date for passage.

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How about a lane number four one that corrects their own Mistake and get it right the first time...

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Relying on Congress to fix the VA Claims Appeal wait times, good luck on that.     The VA came up with the FDC Program which seems to be fairly successful, I don't think Congress was involved with that. Then there's the VA Ratings Dept "Quality Control Review" of recent Decisions, it worked for me in 12/2015, eliminated the need for a NOD Filing. I haven't really looked at any Stats for the "QCR," and really wasn't aware of it until I got the Denial Reversal.  Semper Fi       

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   This sounds like a great use of your time.   Its way better than worrying.  Help other Veterans...this helped me, too, even tho my appeal will probably be done by the time this legislation is signed.  (yea right.) 

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Broncovet,  Your advice is "spot on"!  Rather then worrying myself over my DRO hearing and what the results will be, I decided to see what info I can get, and pass on to other veterans pertaining to claims, appeals, etc.  Especially after the "fiasco" I had last year.  I July in was purchasing house, I am 100% disabled, and DAV, Veterans of Foreign Wars, told me I qualify for a V.A. loan,  and that I didn't have to get Certificate until I was ready to close.  At that time the V.A. said I didn't "qualify" for a V.A. loan.  Since I live in Arizona, I contacted John McCain's office, gave them the information.  After delaying the closing and almost losing the house, I had to go with another mortgage requiring 5% down.  The day after I closed (naturally) I got the Certificate.  The Department Director called me, an said he got a "ass chewing" directly from McCain, as there was no reason to deny me.  I should ask the V.A. to reimbursement, but they would say, you could have walked away from the house.  Since then I have been in contact with McCain's office, and he has a lot of weight and is a member of committees dealing with veterans, in Washington.  Any info they can pass to me, the told me they would.  So I will keep everyone informed on what is taking place.

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