Armed Forces News

More veterans, surviving spouses and service members should gain access to the benefits for which they are eligible. Under the Department of Veterans Affairs’ new Decision Ready Claims (DRC) program, beneficiaries would have improved access to claims processing.

“These enhancements are another key step in modernizing VA’s benefits delivery to veterans to a fully digital operating environment,” VA Secretary Dr. David J. Shulkin said.

Improvements include:

– Veterans can file some claims for direct, presumptive and secondary service connection.

– Surviving spouses will be able to file certain Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) claims.

– Transitioning service members can file pre-discharge claims 90 days before they leave the service.

– Veterans who opt to file claims using DRC can expect a decision within 30 days after VA receives their claim. Veterans intending to use DRC must work with a representative from an accredited veterans’ service organization (VSO). The representatives would help make sure that each veteran-applicant is submitting the proper documentation, including records of medical examinations and their military service, for example.

VA hopes to expand DRC in the future, to further enhance and expedite the claims process. For more information on DRC, or to find a VSO representative, visit https://www.benefits.va.gov/compensation/DRC.asp.