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Understanding The Benefits Review For VA Disability


When you file for veterans disability benefits and get approved, you may breathe a sigh of relief. You may think you don’t have to go through all that again. That is not necessarily true.

Within five years of your benefits approval, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) may re-examine your disability rating.  If you have a condition that’s expected to improve over time, the VA will most likely re-evaluate your condition within 2 to 5 years of your initial examination. The VA wants to see if your condition has improved or even disappeared, since not all service-connected injuries are permanent.

The VA will schedule an examination to determine if your VA disability rating is still appropriate for how much your service connected disability affects your ability to function, as well as your quality of life. It is vitally important that you attend this appointment or reschedule it for a better time. Otherwise, the VA will have grounds to reduce or even terminate your VA disability benefits.

If the disability rating has been in place for five years or more and there is no sustained improvement in the condition, the VA cannot reduce the veteran’s disability rating.

Receiving a notice regarding a review can be stressful. You may feel as though you are being audited. However, you should not panic. A notice does not automatically mean you are at risk of losing your VA disability benefits. If your condition has remained the same, the VA will likely find that your VA disability rating is still accurate.

The five-year rule is a way to safeguards your disability claim. It prevents the VA from reducing your disability rating unless there has been a significant improvement in your condition over time.

The reasons for reevaluating a disability rating vary depending on the nature of the disability. Conditions such as loss of limbs or blindness are often considered permanent and total disabilities and do not require a five-year review. On the other hand, mental health disabilities or certain medical conditions like cancer may not be considered permanent. They may get better over time, and the VA does not want to waste money on disability payments for veterans who are not truly disabled. Therefore, the agency reserves the right to re-examine veterans whose conditions may be expected to improve over time.

Learn More About Veterans Benefits

Disabilities sometimes get better over time. The VA may perform a review within five years to ensure you are not defrauding the system, so learn how to prepare.

Veterans may not be fully informed about this reevaluation process. It’s best to get help from a White Plains veterans disability benefits lawyer from The Law Office of Michael Lawrence Varon. We can guide you through the review process and ensure you understand your rights and responsibilities. To schedule a free consultation, call 914-294-2145 or fill out the online form.



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