Navigating a VA Disability Compensation Claim Denial

Receiving a denial for a VA Disability Compensation Claim can be disheartening, but it’s not the end of the road. Understanding the options for further review or for appeals is crucial. This guide outlines the steps veterans could take if faced with a claim denial.

Review the Denial Notice

The first action is to carefully review the denial notice. The VA will provide the reasons for the denial, which can inform your next steps. Determine whether the denial is due to insufficient evidence, non-service-connected disability, or other reasons.

Gather Additional Evidence

If the denial stems from a lack of evidence, gather more comprehensive medical records, doctors’ opinions, or new evidence that supports the service connection of your disability.

Understand the Appeals Process

If reconsideration is not successful, or you believe the decision was erroneous, you can seek further review or appeal. There are different options, including:

NOTE: Follow the instructions on the forms to ensure that the right conditions or disabilities are listed on the correct form. Each review and appeal process has unique and specific requirements.

File the Request or Appeal

To initiate the review or appeal process, file the appropriate form with the VA. This must be done within one year of the date on the cover letter of the denial notice. Specify on the appropriate form which issues you disagree with and choose your appeal option.

Consider Legal Counsel

Navigating the appeals process can be complex. You may consider seeking assistance from a VA-accredited attorney.

Stay Informed and Patient

The appeals process can be lengthy. Be prepared to wait.


A denial of a VA Disability Compensation Claim is not final. Veterans have the right to seek further review and appeal the decision. By understanding the steps involved in filing for reconsideration and the appeals process, veterans can advocate for their deserved benefits.