Mail Delays Prompt VA to Extend Deadlines
The Department of Veterans Affairs ran into a big snag with a printing vendor and a lot of notification letters to veterans were delayed. But fear not — the VA is extending your response time.
The Government Printing Office, which provides printing services via contracted vendors, couldn’t get out the notification letters dated from July 13, 2021 and Dec. 31, 2021. Some of those letters, which required a response from veterans, could have dealt with required exams for compensation and pension, or for making an election about services or benefits, or more.
Typically, there are problems if you don’t respond in time. However, at this point, because of the delayed mailings, the VA isn’t going to terminate, reduce or deny services and benefits unless you’ve been contacted and there’s documentation about your right to respond; or the information it asked you for has been received; or the response period has ended.
If you haven’t received an expected communication from the VA, call 800-827-1000 to ask about the status of any letters you should have received. Be certain they have current cellphone, home phone, email and address info for you.
If you’ve filed an appeal, the Board of Veterans’ Appeals also is experiencing significant delays in getting information to you about hearings and decisions. As of last month, the board is figuring up a workaround to get information to you and your representatives. If you’re waiting on a notice about a hearing, they’ll try any number of methods to reach you. If you have to postpone, call them ASAP. If you’re waiting on a decision, ask your rep to access Caseflow to see if your decision information has been included yet.
For more information, including ways to get additional assistance, check www.bva.va.gov/docs/Delayed_notifications_fact_sheet.pdf
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