Departmental Review

If You have received a disability decision, and you feel that you have not been assessed appropriately.  From this point, you have some decisions to make.  You have two options at this point; A Departmental Review and/or Review Hearings.

A Departmental Review

(from VAC's website)

"If you have important new evidence after receiving a decision that you are not satisfied with, you have the option of having your claim reviewed again by VAC through a written submission called a Departmental Review. Instead of a departmental review, your case could proceed before a Review Panel of the Veterans Review and Appeal Board (VRAB), which is an independent federal tribunal."

The key point here is "new evidence."  If you have no new evidence, then the Departmental Review will be denied.  VAC is very vague on what "new evidence" is.  However, it is suggested that it is anything that they do not have on file currently.  Again vague.  At the current time, due to the excessive wait times on completion of applications, if your condition is worse or you believe that the condition has not been accurately documented, and you have new evidence that can support your case, you must submit this new evidence in support of your request for a Departmental Review. 

Another key issue you must take into consideration if you decide to request a Departmental Review, is that there are NO PUBLISHED SERVICE STANDARDS for the process.  In other words, they can take as short or as long as they want (or can manage).  With current wait times and backlog, you could be waiting up to 2 years for a decision and if the review is successful, we have heard that it has taken up to a year after the successful appeal to actually get benefits.

Your next or other option is a "Review Hearing."

If you would like help with a Departmental Review, contact us here.