CNN Report on New VA Claims. Backlog Misses the Real Problem!
I am a Veterans Disability Benefits Attorney and former Navy JAGC Officer. I just watched Ms. Crowley's interview of Secretary Eric Shenseki and while grateful to see this important issue brought to light I was dismayed that no one involved discussed the even more enormous problem of Veteran's Appeals of wrongful decisions regarding their disability benefits. Everyone focuses on processing times for an original claim but nobody focuses on the fact that the term "processed" includes denial of a veteran's claim as well as grossly undervaluing a Veteran's claim. According to the records of the Court of Appeals of Veterans claims ( CAVC ) the VA commits reversible error in 80% of claims that reach the Court. No one mentioned the fact that most Veterans have to Appeal multiple times to get the benefits that should have been given to them in their initial claim. No one mentions that it takes 600 plus days to reach the Board Of Veterans Appeals and over 1200 days for an appeal to be heard by the CAVC. In my opinion this is the REAL problem with the VA Disability process.