Standardized Claim and Appeal Forms Now Required for Disability Benefits

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is now requiring that all disability applicants use standardized forms when applying for benefits or filing an appeal. The change is part of the VA’s initiative to make the disability benefits application process simpler and faster. Two types of claims now require the standard forms.

The veterans’ application for disability compensation requires VA Form 21-526EZ, Application for Disability Compensation and Related Compensation Benefits. If a wartime veteran is seeking needs-based pension, he or she must file VA Form 21-527EZ, Application for Pension. Finally, survivors who are filing a claim for dependency and indemnity compensation (DIC), survivor’s pension, or accrued benefits must file VA Form 21-534EZ, Application for DIC, Death Pension, and/or Accrued Benefits.

There are standardized forms for the appeals process as well. Veterans who are in disagreement with a decision regarding their VA compensation must file VA Form 21-0958, Notice of Disagreement. It is important to note that veterans and survivors are not required to use this standardized form to appeal pension or survivors benefits.

The VA is also now accepting a special form that notifies the department of a veteran’s intent to file a claim. This can be done online through the eBenefits system, through the physical VA Form 21-0966, Intent to File a Claim for Compensation and/or Pension, or Survivors Pension and/or DIC, or over the phone with the VA call center. Filing the intent form allows a veteran to gather all of the necessary evidence to support their claim to expedite the processing of their claim and eliminate the need to pause the review process to obtain more information.

You can find these standardized forms on the VA’s website, at your local VA office, or by working with a veterans’ disability advocate. If you would like help with a veterans’ disability benefits appeal, contact Veterans Help Group® for assistance and support for your claim. Call today – 1-855-855-8992.