Last updated 5/2/2016 at 7:55pm | View PDF
We've talked about service-connected disabilities and determining eligibility for compensation. The Veterans Administration (VA) evaluates the extent of the disability and determines a "percentage of disability" (which determines the amount you receive) based on several factors. Many veterans are unaware that they can request a re-evaluation for service connection from the VA.
If you've completed the process of proving service connection and are seeing a doctor for treatment of your disability, you can notify the VA that you believe your condition has grown more severe. We can help you complete the required form and forward it to the VA, which will start the re-evaluation process to see if your disability has become worse. If you have private treatment records for the condition, the VA will collect them, or you may request a copy from your doctor to submit it with the claim. If you choose to provide the records with the claim, the claim may be processed more quickly.
If you have been receiving treatment through a VA facility for the condition that you want re-evaluated, you don't need to provide the records; the VA can request them directly. To verify the severity of your disability, the VA may utilize these records alone, or order a new Compensation and Pension exam.
Even if you have not sought treatment, if you think your service-connected disability has become worse, you should notify the VA. They are required to perform a Compensation and Pension exam to verify whether the condition has become worse.
If the VA orders a new Compensation and Pension exam in support of your claim, you must report for the exam. If you fail to report, the VA may deny any further action on the claim.
If you would like to apply for a re-evaluation of your service-connected disability, our office will happily assist you.
Ken Cruickshank, retired Navy Master Chief Petty Officer, is the Veterans Services Officer for Tulare County. Send your questions to the Veterans Service Office, 205 North L St., Tulare, call (559) 684-4960 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.