The Regional Office has denied your claim and either you decided to forego a Decision Review Officer review or the DRO denied your claim also. In response to your claim being denied, you filed your Notice of Disagreement and the VA mailed you a Statement of the Case. You have read the VA’s Statement of the Case and you still disagree with their decision. Now what?
You need to file your VA Form 9, which can be located here.
You need to first know that there is a limit on how much time that you will have to submit your appeal. The law changes frequently so be sure to check in with your representative as quickly as possible so that you don’t miss that deadline. Right now though, there are three ways to figure out how much time you have to submit your appeal. You get to pick the way that provides you with the most time. They are:
- One year from the day the VA office mailed you the notice of the decision that you are appealing.
- Sixty days from the day that the VA mailed you its Statement of the Case.
- Sixty days after receiving a Supplemental Statement of the Case when that SSOC was provided to you after you submitted additional evidence within the one-year period described above.
It’s important to note that the time does not begin to run from when you receive the notice; it begins to run from when the VA mailed you the decision.
The Form 9 will ask you to answer some important questions. You will be asked to identify the issues that you want to appeal and the reason for your disagreement. This is important and often requires the help of an accredited attorney or claim agent. Given how long it has taken to get to this point, there’s no reason not to involve a professional to help.