In our prior post we highlighted the efforts Senator Kay Hagan (D-North Carolina) made to Congress in order to resolve the VA backlog in disability claims in that state. The backlog issue has been well-chronicled, and has been a persistent problem that has gotten progressively worse with additional ailments being recognized.
As the 2014 withdrawal date approaches, more senators are petitioning for Veterans’ Affairs to move faster to resolve the growing backlog. This week, Senators Bob Casey (D-Pennsylvania), Pat Toomey (R-Pennsylvania) and Dean Heller (R-Nevada) asked President Obama to become directly involved in the issue and use his influence to promote movement on the problem.
The three senators penned a letter explaining that a resolution was critical to current (and future) generations of veterans, and that the President’s direct involvement was essential to establishing a clear directive on the problem. The letter was also signed by 65 senators hailing from both sides of the aisle.
Responses to veterans’ disabilities claims average 300 days. The Pennsylvania offices are among the worst in the nation in processing claims. The Pittsburgh office has 80 percent of its cases backlogged, while the Philadelphia office has 64 percent behind schedule.
With the drawdowns in Iraq and Afghanistan, analysts predict that more veterans will seek benefits for injuries sustained while in battle zones. Even the proposed merge of computer systems between the VA and the Department of Defense may not be sufficient to reduce the backlog. However, a skilled disability attorney can help veterans whsoe petitions may be stalled by incorrect information and other paperwork errors.
Source: PennLive.com, Senators Bob Case and Pat Toomey urge President Obama to resolve veterans’ disabilities claims, April 30, 2013.
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