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Request A Copy of Your VA C-File: VA Claims Folder


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Know what VA is reading about you. Request your VA claims file (VA C File).
 
VA Claims File is the infamous C File. We can not stress enough how important it is to View your VA Claims File at the Veterans Affairs regional office (find your Regional VA Office here). Call the VA at 1-800-827-1000 and request an appointment to view your C File (VA Claims File).
  • Ensure that all the records in your VA Claims File or C File are yours.
  • Check that everything you have sent to the VA is included in your VA Claims File.
  • After viewing your VAClaims File (c file) and correcting any mistakes you may find, you should request a hard copy of your C File.

If you’re having difficulty obtaining your VA Claims File from your Regional VA Office, you can file a written Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request. See below for more information on FOIA requests.

vertical-blue-line.pngRead more on Establishing Veterans Affairs Service Connection for Disability Compensation.

When you apply for disability benefits, the VA creates a claims file. Information you send to the VA records the VA obtains on your behalf, and documents created by the VA are all in this file. The claims file is commonly referred to as the “C File.”

When you apply for disability benefits, the VA creates a claims file. Information you send to the VA records the VA obtains on your behalf, and documents created by the VA are all in this file. The claims file is commonly referred to as the “C File.”

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Typical Documents in a VA Claims File

When you receive your VA Claims File, don’t be surprised if the documents are disorganized. Also, there may be several document copies even though you only need one. It can take a while to sort it all out. If you want some help with this, you may want to find a VA disability attorney to assist you.

Here are some basic documents you might find in your C File if you have applied for VA benefits. This is not an exhaustive list but merely a description of the most common and important documents you should find in your file. If any of these documents are missing, you will want to obtain them. (See Nolo’s article on obtaining VA records for more information about how to do that.)

DD-214, Report of Separation From Service

This is a very important document. It includes information about your character of service, which can determine your eligibility for benefits. Your DD-214 will also include your dates of service, specialties, any medals received, and other information about your term(s) of service.

Application for Benefits

Any applications for benefits that you have previously made should be included in your C File. This can be important if you do not keep copies before applying.

Denial Letter, Ratings Decision, and Code Sheet

If you have been denied benefits, there should be a letter in your file notifying you of the decision to deny you benefits. Until recently, the VA issued detailed rating decisions explaining why benefits were granted or denied and certain ratings were assigned to service-connected disabilities. The rating decisions do not provide much information and tend to be brief.

There should also be a code sheet accompanying the rating decision. The code sheet contains information about the rating decision, such as the diagnostic code used to assign the disability rating. It also provides information about the effective date of benefits, whether a future reexamination will be required, and additional details about the decision.

If you hire an attorney, they will ask you for a copy of the denial letter, rating decisions, and code sheet.

Service Medical Records

You may find copies of your service medical records in the file if the VA requested these while gathering information to decide your claim. An important document in these records is the report from your enlistment examination. This exam report contains information on whether you suffered from certain medical conditions when you entered service.

VA FOIA Requests


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