- Get competent representation, don’t go it alone. Be picky, interview several Veterans Service Officers until you locate one that you feel confident with.
- You can file a Fully Developed Claim,
- Make a list and request copies of all Medical files from private physicians and hospitals ( available to you under the Freedom of Information Act)
- Request a copy of your Units History & lineage from the appropriate archive.
- Keep a file of all correspondence (make sure to staple the envelope to the letter for postmark date) with the VA; note received date in your logbook with a brief description.
- Keep copies of everything you send to the VA, do not send originals unless required.
- Never send documentation or requests directly to the VA. Always route through your Veterans Service Officer as he/she should be keeping a log of information received and sent to VA dates. ( this is a back up source when the VA says they lost or did not receive a document from you) Also, your rep should be going over everything you submit checking for, and eliminating, items that would be detrimental to your claim.
- Use the sources of information and links from this website. Use our discussion forum it’s very active you can post your question in any section that is pertinent to your question. It may take a day or so but there’s usually at least one veteran out there that can lend some assistance. Use references, access to the laws and rules governing VA Benefits, tips, suggestions, and aids in helping you become knowledgeable.
- There are no stupid questions, check the FAQ’s first, then ask for help.
- Follow the guidelines laid out on the website and follow through with backup for everything.
Expect to continue learning as you go, education is ongoing, share with your brother and sister veterans whenever possible, knowledge is power, we can learn from each others mistakes and avoid problems others have overcome. Welcome Home !! Thank you for your service.
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