VA says it’s committed to reducing benefits claims backlog

We have shared how delays in processing have led to many veterans having to wait months or even years to see their veterans’ disability claims acted on. While progress has so far been slow, there is news that should be welcomed by disabled veterans in Minnesota and around the country.

The VA says it has reduced the claim background by more than one-third since March of this year. The stated goal of the department is to completely eliminate the backlog in 2015. There is still much work to be done to get there, however.

One of the overarching goals is to transform the claims and appeals process from one that is weighed down by forms into one that is paperless and handled on computers. This also reduces the chances that a particular file might be misplaced or lost. One of the department’s other initiatives is to make sure that there are enough claims processors to do the work in a timely matter. Many employees received overtime this year to help catch up with the backlog. Officials say that if they receive full funding, then they will continue doing so next year as well.

The undersecretary of veterans affairs for benefits said recently that 99.9 percent of claims that had been pending for more than two years have now been completed. While that represents a great majority of claims, there are still disabled veterans who need assistance. They might consider working with an experienced Social Security Disability benefits representative for help.