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RockyA1911

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I am really confused now as to how the process works from time of receipt of claim to award letter.

Exactly where is the Rating Board in the process? Is there someone on here that knows the actual process steps and in which sequence they fall up to the award notice?

What is the difference between Rating Board and Rating Specialists?

What I am looking for is the numbered steps such as (1) Development Team, (2) Adjudication, (3) Rating Board, etc. This would be great if someone knows the actual sequence and what the functions of each team and the impact on the claim.

Thanks,

RockyA

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Guest DON20906

When a new claim is recieved at a RO it is supposed to follow the path, according to the latest VA TRIP training manual.

1. Triage Team

Triage teams are an attempt by C&P service to improve overall claims processing times by assessing the difficulty of incoming claims an assigning them to Veteran Service Representatives with the apporopriate levels of experience. Triage basically sorts claims by difficulty. Easy claims requiring little or no development are given to new VSRs, usually right inside the triage team. Claims are tracked on Modern Awards Processing - Development (MAP-D) software in Triage and Pre-D.

2. Pre-Determination Team (formerly Adjudication)

Claims with multiple issues requiring extensive development are given to experienced Veteran Service Representatives in the pre-determination team. The pre-determination team does required development and duty-to-assist actions and reviews claims that are supposedly "ready-to-rate" for completeness before they are sent to Rating VSRs or "the Rating Board."

3. "Rating Board"

In the old days, VSRs were "adjudicators" and Rating Veteran Service Represenatives were "rating specialists." RVSRs make the actual decsions and get the required numbers of signatures, depending on the type of claim. VSOs are given a look at the files on which they have POAs at this stage. Awards with retro payments of $25,000 and over require additional review.

4. Post-Determination Team

Once a rating is complete and has been reviewed and signed off on it is sent to the post-determination team where the decision is made into an award of monetary benefits, pending a final administrative review on things such as character of dicharge, willful misconduct, etc. Is and Ts are dotted and crossed here. The decision is then "promugated" to the claimant in writing. Claims are tracked on Modern Awards Processing - Award (MAP-A) software in Post-D.

The process is supposed to be consistent across ROs but some variation exists.

Hope this helps.

I am really confused now as to how the process works from time of receipt of claim to award letter.

Exactly where is the Rating Board in the process? Is there someone on here that knows the actual process steps and in which sequence they fall up to the award notice?

What is the difference between Rating Board and Rating Specialists?

What I am looking for is the numbered steps such as (1) Development Team, (2) Adjudication, (3) Rating Board, etc. This would be great if someone knows the actual sequence and what the functions of each team and the impact on the claim.

Thanks,

RockyA

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Thanks Don,

So if a vet is told their claim is now at the "Rating Board" is step 3 with only the post determination team to go? How much of a delay is there if there is retro involving over $25K?

RockyA

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Rocky- I am glad you asked because Don gave a step by step post like this before and I cant remember what I saved it as-I looked for it yesterday and couldnt find it-

As I recall- retro over 25,000 requires 3 signatures.

I dont get it- they told me months ago that three authorizors signed off on one of my claims but they are working on the additional one now-to put it all together-

Authorization used to mean a good thing- but it is hard to tell-so I dont put anything into what they say-

except

the best word they can ever say to a vet at the 800# is that "it is in Finance"!

Also under M21-1 (I think we have a link here) there is more info to the claims format they use but Don says it better.

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Guest DON20906

You are welcome. It's hard to say on the delay, but the closer the RO is to being able to take an End Product (work credit) for the claim, the quicker they will put it through. Other factors, like how close the end of the fiscal year is, if an RO is running at or over budget, may also play. I'd give it a couple more weeks and call abck.

Thanks Don,

So if a vet is told their claim is now at the "Rating Board" is step 3 with only the post determination team to go? How much of a delay is there if there is retro involving over $25K?

RockyA

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End product code- yes -I have had one pending on my claims for quite some time ( it is called a 930 pending).

Something told me to call today and the vet rep said my claims have gone from the rating board to a Supervisor this morning.

I cannot read anything into that but I am always ready to continue the fight-

After I won my last claims- I stayed in that fighting mode for a long time- it was just hard to believe it was finally over.

I have additional evidence but when they really started working the claims- it seemed pointless to send them more-they have more than enough.

I wonder what a supervisor is- the VA nomenclature has changed a lot-

(maybe it is the PAP-paper airplane person)

Men and women you all know I am a civilian but I often feel , as a VA claimant waiting for a decision, like I am awaiting incoming that doesn't come in.You cant react or fight back because you dont know what you are fighting back to.

Edited by Berta
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Carlie- I sure would try to-dont know if I could carry it far-

Our local VAMC has some nice shindigs for the vets-parades and stuff and they bring in artifacts and artillery (I think they come from Fort Drum with this stuff)

Cool stuff - a WWII ambulance- tanks, etc -it is always great to be at a VAMC on Veterans Day. At least this one -Bath VAMC- it was an old Civil War Hospital and they farmed and raised livestock for the vets right on the grounds there-we have a Museum too-Dom, Cemetery, 2 canteens, it is absolutely beautiful at this VAMC. They often get the annual award for being the cleanest VAMC in the US of A.

Well -they had an M16 at one display- and I asked the soldier how much it was-he was shocked and I said "isn't this a yard sale?"

well he laughed and handed it to me- I was stunned by how heavy it was!

Men and women -that equipment is so heavy!

How did you all do it? Even without the M16 and the other stuff-I bet the heat at some of these Basic Training and boot camps is just awful. The USAF at Lackland puts up some sort of flag if the weather is too hot for some exercises.

I saw Hamburger Hill vets on the Ollie North show last Sunday and they scaled that hill with considerable heavy gear in the terrible heat-(and the incoming) but Normandy, Afganistan, Iraq------it all amazes me how much men and women can deal with to serve our country.

This should be in social but- well- anyhow-

I read a WWII former POW's account years ago. She was a POW in Japan.

She survived by not only eating the little bit of rice they gave her every day but she ate the maggots in it too.(for protein)

Us civilians really don't have a clue what military service must be like!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Berta

Imagine grunts in Vietnam out on patrol carrying 80-100 pounds on their backs in that heat. The temperature would be over 100 degrees. Heat strokes and such were very common injuries. Think about wearing a steel pot that you could fry an egg on walking through mud that sucks the boots off your feet. I know the guys in Iraq have it bad but nothing like the grunt in Vietnam. This is one reason grunts would volunteer for high risk jobs like door gunners just to get out of horrible living conditions.

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John- I cannot imagine how miserable that was- I know many Nam vets were in utilities or cameos , soaked wet from sweat and monsoons ,wet -week after week .

My neighbor bought over his new guns Sunday-(we are all armed in the NY boonies) and I looked through the scope on one of them and I had been weed-wacking and sweat was in my eyes, I couldn't see well through the sight at all--I cannot imagine how it could have been to deal with the variables of heat,sweat, and terrain, and the enemy- not to mention hunger, thirst, and not knowing what would happen next.

And trenches- we still used a form of trenching warfare in Vietnam- those trenches would fill with rain and mud-and men would have to fight, sleep,(maybe) eat (maybe), use as latrine, and pull their dead in there until the fire stopped-and of course that ground fire power usually came in at night.

Hope the topic cops arent around-

Men and women, one of my favorite movies is Master Commander of the World- the frigate movie-it is extremely well done historically-

I mentioned to my daughter how the British officers in the boarding parties were kids and portrayed correctly.But a little odd for anyone to see , not familiar with British naval history.

(A British naval officer could be very young in the 1800s)

She reminded me that in Vietnam many of the officers were kids in a way too-

her point was the average age of soldiers in Nam was very young-when Rod used to grieve over his Nam USMC commander he always called him the Old Man. I was shocked to realise one day that the Old Man was only 25.

You guys were not "kids"-John- dont get me wrong- but the innocence of youth was lost there in the jungles and the hills. Your nations puts ordinary people into extraordinary events-whenever and whereever and that equals PTSD

and even goes beyond what they say PTSD is------

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John,

This is in no way disrespectful of your service in Vietnam, but to me as a Somalia and Haiti Vet, the issues for the guys/gals in Iraq now, aren't the mud and the steel pots, but the heavy body armor that captures all of your body heat and persperation that comes from being in the desert, the sand that gets into everything they wear or sleep on or eat. I've got friends now that are on their third tour in the great sandbox. One is a helo pilot, and his dad was one in Vietnam, his dad lost his life in Vietnam, and I just pray that he doesn't go down over there. Plus he's flown in Mogadishu, Bosnia, Afghanistan, and now Iraq. I wouldn't want to have to serve in Vietnam, but to me each war is unique in it's own challenges. I feel for the Iraq, Vietnam, Korea, WWII, WWI, Haitian war, War of 1812, Civil War, French and Indian war, and the Revolutionary War.

To me we all share one thing in common. Each and every one of them sucked to no end for the men and women who served in them, and the families at home that had to worry about them.

All of us are a band of brothers, and I will reiterate, I am not jealous of your service in Vietnam. I never have understood the gung ho let's go to war soldier, to me the first time I saw RPG's flying by me and exploding yards away, I knew that I was changed as a young man, and the things after that just got worse.

God Bless you sir and thanks for your service.

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John/Berta,

OK, I called the 800# and they said my claim is now in the "FINALIZATION" process and I should get a letter of notification in approximately two weeks. Every time I get this stuff down and understand it, I even studied the Structure of the VSC. No where did I see the term "finalization" or that process.

Could it mean it is at the Post Award Team? It was at the rating board before if you recall a couple of weeks ago.

Funny no one mentioned the leaches to go along with the heat/monsoons and very difficult terrain and other suffering previously mentioned.

Just goes to show ya, even though it is on the Iwo Jima Memorial I believe it was meant for all U.S. forces that have engaged the enemy of the U.S. and that is "Uncommon Valor was a Common Virtue". I was a Marine, but it goes from all that fought from the Revoluntionary War to present.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Rocky

I don't care what the VA calls it as long as you get a good decision in two weeks that will be OK. I never heard of the "finalization process" either, but I imagine it is just another step on the path. Keep calling every few weeks and see what is happening. It sounds like you are getting very close.

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Tthis does sound like it is at the stage of notifying you of the decision. Do you have a SO? If so, they could tell you exactly where it is at and if they have signed off on it, they will know the decision made, even though you will not be able to take their answer as the final one. You need to get that from the VA in the mail.

Hope the outcome is a good one for you. Good luck.

mssoup1

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Yes, I have an AMVETS VSO and I know he is lying to me. He has told me that he does not know what the outcome or decision is until I get the notification letter from the VA and show it to him if I am dissatisfied with the decision. And yet I know many vets with AMVETS SOs that have called them and told them of the decision at least two weeks prior to them receiving the letter from the VA. He argued with me and told me that I would get the decision before he did and then only if I show it to him. What a crock. These guys are always too busy for the veteran anyway. They are more interested in scheduling their motels and airfare, etc for all their trips around the country and conventions and what have you.

Oh well, I've waited it out 16 months now, so what is a few more weeks give or take.

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Guest allanopie

>I am really confused now as to how the process works from time of receipt of claim to award letter.

Hello Rocky,

Rating procedures?

Theres the way it should be, the way it could be and the way it is.

I first filed through an SO. He requested a copy of my service records from the RO.

A few days later, I recieved a one sentence denial, stating the records didn't support the claim & nothing else.

Around 22 years later. I recieved the first 13 months of what was left of

4 yrs active duty & 2 yrs naval reserve service medical records.

Im still waiting for someone to process the ratible medical issues, listed on my separation examination from 1971.

Thats the proceedure many of us have experienced.

Then theres what Don & others have pointed out.

The important thing to understand about the rating process for Vets is, it doesn't matter what the law says.

There is "NO" accountibility at the DVA. They simply do what pleases them.

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OK, this is the kind of crap I always get when I contact the VA online and get the service center manager. I got this response today after previously being told that my claim was at the rating board on 20 June 06 and that I should receive notification in two weeks..........that was on the 30th of June 2006. It's like it is starting all over again! In Sep 05 almost a year ago I received this same reply and a few months later when I inquired they denied having ever sent it out to another regional office and I distinctly remember calling them and asking which regional office and they told me Seattle. Dejavu is never ending with my claim it seems. I now believe for certain the VA is out to intentionally delay my claim. 16 months old it is now.

See the monkey business going on?

"Dear Mr. XXXXX:

After review in our office, your case was sent to another regional office to be rated. This is a common procedure due to our current large caseload. We anticipate completing your case within approximately 60 days.

Again, we regret the delay and any inconvenience to you. Thank you for visiting our website.

Sincerely yours,

Michael Stephens

Veterans Service Center Manager

B163

Response (Department of Veterans Affairs)

03/13/2006 02:34 PM

Dear Mr. XXXXX:

Your claim is currently with a rating specialist, this is the person who makes the actual decision on your claim. For this reason, we would anticipate a response to you shortly. We apologise for the delay and hope this answers your question.

Thank you for visiting our website.

Sincerely yours,

Michael Stephens

Veteran Service Center Manager

B163

Veteran/Inquirer

03/13/2006 12:30 PM

My claim will be 1 year old 25Mar06. I had long ago signed the expedited action form and stated that I had nothing further to submit. Since that time I have forwarded two more supporting documents. (1) Neuropyschological Evaluation from ICVAMC and (2) Abnormal EEG report from ICVAMC. There is nothing else needed and it has been a very long time for a decision on my claim. I have received past status that stated my claim was undergoing decision review in Sep 05 and then again in Dec 05, and again in Feb 06. I was informed to day that it is not being rated but has been reviewed several times and placed back in adjudication status. Please tell me what the delay is and if something else is needed from me, please let me know what the hold up is.

B163"

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Guest anfrnkie
OK, this is the kind of crap I always get when I contact the VA online and get the service center manager. I got this response today after previously being told that my claim was at the rating board on 20 June 06 and that I should receive notification in two weeks..........that was on the 30th of June 2006. It's like it is starting all over again! In Sep 05 almost a year ago I received this same reply and a few months later when I inquired they denied having ever sent it out to another regional office and I distinctly remember calling them and asking which regional office and they told me Seattle. Dejavu is never ending with my claim it seems. I now believe for certain the VA is out to intentionally delay my claim. 16 months old it is now.

See the monkey business going on?

"Dear Mr. XXXXX:

After review in our office, your case was sent to another regional office to be rated. This is a common procedure due to our current large caseload. We anticipate completing your case within approximately 60 days.

Again, we regret the delay and any inconvenience to you. Thank you for visiting our website.

Sincerely yours,

Michael Stephens

Veterans Service Center Manager

B163

Response (Department of Veterans Affairs)

03/13/2006 02:34 PM

Dear Mr. XXXXX:

Your claim is currently with a rating specialist, this is the person who makes the actual decision on your claim. For this reason, we would anticipate a response to you shortly. We apologise for the delay and hope this answers your question.

Thank you for visiting our website.

Sincerely yours,

Michael Stephens

Veteran Service Center Manager

B163

Veteran/Inquirer

03/13/2006 12:30 PM

My claim will be 1 year old 25Mar06. I had long ago signed the expedited action form and stated that I had nothing further to submit. Since that time I have forwarded two more supporting documents. (1) Neuropyschological Evaluation from ICVAMC and (2) Abnormal EEG report from ICVAMC. There is nothing else needed and it has been a very long time for a decision on my claim. I have received past status that stated my claim was undergoing decision review in Sep 05 and then again in Dec 05, and again in Feb 06. I was informed to day that it is not being rated but has been reviewed several times and placed back in adjudication status. Please tell me what the delay is and if something else is needed from me, please let me know what the hold up is.

B163"

i did not think va could send your file to another va,i was told by va that my case would have to state in the state you live, i would love mine to go someplace else
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  • HadIt.com Elder

Rocky

I think the VA moves claims around so that they can seem to be doing something. I have heard that they even send claims to the St. Petersburg RO which has the largest number of cases waiting anywhere and many thousands of appeals. It is just a numbers game of ring around the rosey. It is scary when you think of how incompetent the VA is and how long they can take to screw up a claim.

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Guest allanopie

Careful with what you ask for.

My claim was at the Seattle RO for yrs. I requested the BVA to handle it, because I didn't believe Seattle could honestly process it. The BVA sent it to the Appeals center, then the Appeals center remanded it to St Petersburg. After having "their" intentional incompetence process the claim, I would rather it stayed at Seattle.

I requested my claim go the the BVA for a decision, because I don't believe St Pete's is competent enough to process a claim "honestly".

Instead of making a decision, The BVA has again remanded it back to the Appeals Center with instructions that they have to actually read the IMO this time. Since it's been at the Center for a month with a, "Ready to Rate" status, the only information I could get on this expedited claim is, "Its waiting for someone to be free to process it".

It sat at St Pete's 7 months before someone was free enough to deny due process, last yr. I know theres a 60day waiting period for comment. But it seems like I should be able to waive that & have it processed. The longer it sits, the longer they have to think about where to remand it to next.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Allan

If it is at the St. Pete VARO prepare for the worst. I have used that office for many years and none of the rating decisions ever make sense. Even when they give you what you want it will be for the wrong reason. You have to stay on their asses constantly. I used to drive over there all the time to check on my claim. I could not trust a single word they said and they lost everything I ever sent them at least once.

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