Transforming VA’s Claims Process: eBenefits

Applying for a VA disability claim online is the fastest and quickest way to receive a decision. eBenefits, VA-Department of Defense’s joint portal, lets Veterans enter claim information electronically using a step-by-step, interview-style application, with pre-populated data fields and drop-down menus similar to popular tax preparation software.

For more information and to get a free premium account, visit https://www.ebenefits.va.gov .

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33 Comments to “Transforming VA’s Claims Process: eBenefits”

  1. Is this going to make the end result quicker? At present we are looking at over one year and most times up to two years. A veteran could die before his claim is ruled.

    • Jerry says:

      They say on the front page that the average fully developed claim filed online takes 111 days. That is 1/3 the time.

      • Jerry says:

        My bad… The presentation says 125 days.

      • James, there are many factors affecting wait times, including the complexity and number of contentions within the claim. However, the short answer is yes: Filing an FDC claim electronically via eBenefits is drastically quicker. How drastic? How quick? Current numbers show an average date to completion underneath the 2015 goal. This system has revolutionized the claims process. :)

  2. 1. I am already receiving disability benefits.
    2. I wish to apply for additional, non-related benefits.
    3. I was told that I should file a FULLY-DEVELOPED CLAIM. Does this new e-Benefit system eliminate the Fully-Developed Paper Claim that I have started with DAV?
    So my choice is to just do online or paper thru DAV.

    THANK YOU VERY MUCH for this info and for being there for Veterans.

    • Hi Eric,

      If you have a VSO-submitted FDC already in the claims inventory, you should continue that route. In the future, should you desire to again file, we would encourage you to use your VSO to file the FDC electronically. You’ll be happy to know that the current FDC average date to completion numbers are within the Secretary’s 2015 goal.

  3. Dean Williamson says:

    Theoretically yes, it should make it quicker. That last time I did a claim, it took 8-10 months. However, I have waited up to 6 years. So, the 8-10 months was a heck of lot better. This process will take out the middle man of filling out the paperwork and then mailing or faxing it in. Its important that the veterans get what they are deserved up front and quickly. Thank you everyone for your service.

  4. JUKE179r says:

    What is concidered as a proper timeframe for “fastest and quickest way to receive a decision”?
    I entered all my information for a medical claim on ebenefits along with uploading 26 pages of medical paperwork, DD214 and USAF retirement paperwork on July 2013. The only notification I recieved was a letter dated 16 Nov 1013 from the Montgomery Alabama VA office stating they have my information and some will contact me via phone.
    I’m still waiting.

    • Hi JUKE179r,

      Secretary Shinseki’s goal for all claims by 2015 is 125 days. A number of factors affect the wait time for completion, especially overly complex claims and those claims with many contentions. The good news is that the FDC offers a promising glimpse of the future of the claims process–our latest numbers show they’re being completed quickly and accurately.

      If you log into eBen, you can click on “View My Status,” then click on “track my claim” to see the latest progress of your claim.

      • Roy Klein says:

        EBenefits looks and sounds impressive, and it would be if the VA would actually use it to update the status of claims and appeals. And, the claims and appeals tracking is completely misleading. This so-called tracking information of my claim’s appeal has only 3 entries listed, with the latest entry date of 07/29/2011. The tracking information is “very informative” stating that my appeal is “Pending” and located at the “RO”.
        Here is the canned reply to multiple inquires I submitted: “We received your notice of disagreement (NOD) on July 18, 2011. You elected a review by a Decision Review Officer (DRO) on April 3, 2012. Right now, your appeal is awaiting that review.” Notice that the 3 April 2012 date does not exist in the tracking data.
        Also, I was informed that the “processing of an NOD averages about 460 days”; well, it is now 896 days since my NOD was received and 641 days since the 3 April 2012 date. So, exactly how do they get the average processing time down to 460 days? I would say creative accounting, but that would be giving the VA too much credit.

  5. Steve says:

    E-benefits has been around for a very long time and now VBA is just getting to it, what happen to claims that are already in the system, my claim has been there for almost 2 years and now the VA told my person who did my claim they can’t find it and when I go to e-benefits they tell me that they can’t provide me with any information about they claim

  6. Frank & Linda says:

    I’m now 68 and have submitted a Legitimate Claim over a Year ago and continue to receive letter’s stating that ” We are still working on your Claim”.. I’m a Patient Vet and realize the enormous Effort to process these Claims. I’m a Vietnam Veteran Diagnosed with Mulitiple Myeloma from exposure with ” Agent Orange” in 1965-66.

    Please make some extra Effort to resolve my Claim ASAP. Time is Running Out, because it’s later than you think…God Bless you and Our Veterans.

    Best Regards.

    Francis P. Drohan
    USMC
    1963-1967.

    • Thank you for your service, Frank.

      The good news, according to the recent reports on the “oldest claims initiative,” is that VBA has completed nearly all of the 2+ and 1+ year-old claims. Right now would be a good time to check your claim status in eBenefits, or register for an eBen account if you don’t have one. You can do this at http://www.ebenefits.va.gov.

      If you have any further issues or questions, drop us a line at http://www.facebook.com/VeteransBenefits :)

      • Jonathon says:

        “The good news, according to the recent reports on the “oldest claims initiative,” is that VBA has completed nearly all of the 2+ and 1+ year-old claims”…..Nearly all? My simple claim, and yes I mean simple, has been submitted for over 16 months. When I ask about it, the VA tells me that they dont know when it will be completed. I have an Ebenefits acct. It tells me that my claim was suppose to be done last May. Apparently not. I hope its true that they are almost done with them………

  7. Fred Garcia says:

    Accuracy of posting status, phase progress, receipt of evidence/documents, etc.; although problematic has been improving. When calls to NSO reps & 800# reveals that one shouldn’t trust what displays on eBenefits; or that they don’t have a satisfactory grasp of the workings of the website, one would assume that staff training should be targeted towards this vagueness. Nobody seems to know who is responsible or capable of the actual posting of the data once it is in the pipeline. Did the postings or lack thereof originate from VARO, VBA, BVA, AMC? The website is a valuable tool that has been provided to the veterans because it is at least an avenue to alert one to progress being made or activities being undertaken (request for additional evidence) that the NSO’s don’t have the time or patience to respond to. eBenefits seems to have also advised the veteran sooner than having to rely soley on letters through postal mailings. Therefore, accuracy & timeliness are areas that need emphasis. The constant tweaking of eBenefits demonstrates that there is an effort to identify & resolve the kinks.

  8. Edward Hampton Cox says:

    I HAVE CLAIM IN ON 2 INJURES IN ARMY & AIR FORCE SINCE YEAR 1978
    RECEIVED LETTERS FROM GOV. SAYING MY FILES BURNED UP IN FIRE.
    THIS NT FAIR BEEN TRYING TO HAVE SOMEONE HELP ME ON THIS BUT NO BODY GIVES SHIT ABOUT THIS KIND THING OR IT SEAMS LIKE IT.

  9. Denise M. Robertson says:

    I also understand about the long process. I am a little skeptical about believing that one’s claim can be processed quicker if it is submitted online. I am waiting on a decision from an appeal I filed in April 2013, and my appeal is still in phase one. I hate to say this but I blame the doctors who perform the C&P more then the people who actually work on our claims. Sometimes what the doctors at the VA clinics/hospital dictate, determines when and whether your claim is process in a timely manner and if you will receive a monetary settlement. God Bless all my Veteran Brothers and Sisters.

  10. Steve says:

    I just got letters from the VA telling me on Sept 12 2013, that my claim is ready for review, and then the following week i get a letter dated Sept 20 2013, that my claim is currently in the development phase of processing, and that the Seattle Regional Office , is taking about 15 months to complete. And in some cases it is taking 75 days to scan information into the system. All of the letters are coming out of Salt Lake City, Ut , when the whole time I was sending all of my paperwork to Seattle, Wa , maybe if they would tell us the right address to send to then maybe it could go faster

  11. James D Taylor says:

    I retired with 20% service connected disabilty. Since retirement in ’95, I have had increased health issues related to my established claim. I went directly to my VA Office and online with all my past military and current civilian medical records. The VA scheduled all of my VA Medical Evaluation appts. The process took a total of 14 months! I am quit pleased and impressed! I was sure it would drag out for years! I was increased from 20% to 70%. Thank You to all of you who work and support our Veterans. SFC US ARMY Retired Vietnam / Saudi Vet

  12. Paul D. Conley says:

    I am a County Veteran Service officer! I agree with the whole EBENEFTS program! Each veteran who comes in for help, without an EBENEFITS account, even without a computer, or an internet connection, the veteran is assisted, on the spot with the establishment of his own personal EBENEFITS account! After the establishment of the veteran’s EBENEFITS account, I or my VSO associates, assist the veteran with filing his claim, or making corrections to his personal data, within the veteran’s own EBENEFITS account! It takes only about thirty minutes to establish the veteran’s EBENEFITS account, well most of the time! The veteran is reporting quick response to his request for benefits from his VA Regional Office! Completion of the veteran’s claim is still taking as long as the non- EBENEFITS program! I have my own EBENEFITS submitted claim, and I am still waiting, after seven months! My personal claim is for Individual Unemployablility, with all documents submitted as a Fully Developed Claim! The problem, as I see it, is located within the Regional Office! EBENEFITS does allow for simple data entry, address corrections, banking data entries, and several issues that really do not need the attention or interaction of a Regional Office! Several disability benefit claims can be completed within the EBENEFITS computer program!

  13. Paul D. Conley says:

    My pending FDC claim needed the completion of the Unemployability application, with my Social Security work history! I supplied my FDC Unemployability application, and my Social Security Work history, according with 38 CFR, through my EBENEFITS account, shortly after I applied through standard procedure, by FAX, to my Regional Office! Both ways of filing my Unemployability claim entries, are still awaiting some interaction from the Regional Office!

  14. Bryan says:

    I’m seriously and continue to be baffled at this. I will never understand why simple things like filing a claim should take more than a couple days. It seems that anything to do with Govt. services, programs, benefits….. or similar takes way too long. On the other hand, if they require something from you, they require it right away. And try to get someone on the phone!!!! unbelievable!!!

  15. mike says:

    I wish the va would be more truth full on the all most all clams older the 2 year have been done by the VBA mine is in the 6 year mark and I know of other that are just as long.

  16. Jonathon says:

    “The good news, according to the recent reports on the “oldest claims initiative,” is that VBA has completed nearly all of the 2+ and 1+ year-old claims”
    …..Nearly all? My simple claim, and yes I mean simple, has been submitted for over 16 months. When I ask about it, the VA tells me that they dont know when it will be completed. I have an Ebenefits acct. It tells me that my claim was suppose to be done last May. Apparently not. I hope its true that they are almost done with them………

  17. Michael says:

    I broke my back,shoulder,neck,both legs,got new knee,fumar,all my teeth an whats SUCKS the most i,m BLIND.But i,m doing my best to hang.I sometimes cry.That it seems like there waiting for me to die.Before they will pay me.I ask my self was it worth it.Waiting for someone to say Okay we are going to help u.All i get is the same letter.WE are trying there best its been 5 years an nothing.The same shit over an over again.Like they told me never give up.I,ll keep trying maybe someday i,ll get a check

  18. Stan Lukas says:

    After reading the comments through January 15, 2013, I acknowledge that my statements are redundant. eBenefits uses dated, inaccurate information that gives an illusion that VA is working on your claim. I am fortunately serviced by a regional office (RO) that is among the best in the East, but I am nonetheless intimidated by VA to the point that if I point out a discrepancy between eBenefits and fact to my RO, I fear that my file goes to the bottom of the list for a decision because of my complaint. eBenefits is unavailable frequently, often without prior notice, and the only feature of it that is up to date and accurate is the exam appointments calendar.
    The responses on this page appear to be fluff, designed to placate the veteran, without providing any useful solutions. I welcome an email response to my comments.
    Thank you,
    Stan Lukas

    • Stan Lukas says:

      eBenefits has been completely unavailable for the past day and a half. The VA (and VBA) encourage veterans to use eBenefits. The general public complains about glitches in the Affordable Care Act website. They have no idea what veterans have been experiencing while trying to gather information from eBenefits (which has been around long enough to iron out problem areas). The ACA site is a dream website compared to eBenefits.

      • Stan Lukas says:

        Why am I not surprised? I learned about the software problem from the VFW, not the VA or the VBA. I guess we veterans didn’t have a need to know. What incredible arrogance!V5EA

  19. Bill Prevatt says:

    It is strange that VA tells all of us that they are working the backlog of claims but what they are actually doing is working from the front of the claims back. In other words any claims from Jan 2014 back is how they are working them, not working from Jan 1998 forward. It is no wonder that it has been 15 years and 4 months since my anything on my appeal. In my world, when working on backlog, that would mean that you would work on the OLDEST appeal/claim in the system. So as of today, 22 January 2014 it has been 5,589 days since all this began. Hey VA I am not going anywhere. I am here for the long haul. It has been this long, I will not be going away anytime to soon.

  20. James says:

    I was given 90% when I got out but since then I was awarded SSD based on my SCD. so when I filled my new claim back in April of 13 I thought it would take no time to get it done. Now I’m almost at a year. Now all I can hope is that it doesn’t take another year.

  21. Mike says:

    It is strange that the v.a tells you one thing and do another,I have filled in 2010,and I haven’t been told nothing but to wait,I ask for a hearing and its been two years since they said anything to me accept try to deny my claim.this is real sad about this dept of veteran affairs.you do your time and after the through you away……..they need a better way of serving the vet,who is really suffering……………when you try to call the V A you can’t get thru.or the people you do speak with haven’t got a clue whats going on.this whole system needs a overhaul,those that or working should have some type of knowledge about what the vet goes thru………………..

  22. Mike says:

    I have an appeal that is pending for 520 days now. Is this normal or should I look into this?