In August, VA reached a historic milestone in reducing the disability claims backlog to a new low – and the number of these claims (pending more than 125 days) have come down even further since. This reduction was possible due to our 56 regional offices having the ability to process disability claims electronically from start to finish – more than 99.8 percent of VA’s pending disability claims inventory is fully electronic. This flexibility allows VA to better manage its capabilities to best serve all Veterans just as Veterans served our nation – without regard to their state affiliations.
By fully transitioning to a national workload approach, VA will be able to move claims electronically across regional office boundaries through the National Work Queue – an electronic workload management initiative designed to improve VBA’s overall production capacity.
Does that mean my disability claim won’t be processed by my local regional office?
Not necessarily. The regional office in the state where you reside will continue to be the first filter for determining where your claim will be assigned, provided that office has the capacity to provide you with a timely decision. If not, your claim will be processed by the next available office that has the production capacity. You can still maintain the ability to check the status of your claim through your eBenefits account, as well as through VBA’s national call centers and regional office public contact representatives.
What about the support from Veterans service organizations or my local congressional representative?
Veterans service organization (VSO) representatives will retain access to claims information for the Veterans they support through the Veterans Benefits Management System at each regional office, and online through the Stakeholder Enterprise Portal. The current relationship between VSOs and VA employees (specifically claims processors) will not change as a result of the National Work Queue. Congressional staff will still have access to VBA regional office staff as they do today to check on the status of a constituent’s claim.
How about the quality of decisions?
With a national workload approach, VA will continue to focus on ensuring Veterans, their families and Survivors receive timely and accurate claim decisions – without regard to their state affiliations.
Have any other questions? Ask below in the comments!
About the author: This article was provided by the VBA Office of Corporate Communications, which provides strategic communications support to the Office of the Under Secretary of Benefits and the Veterans Benefits Administration, focusing on transformation initiatives and supporting each of VBA’s business lines.