Thanks for the chance to help. I am an attorney with over 12 years military law
experience and serve as a Veterans Services Officer
That is a good question.
How long does the VA take?
The answer is "it depends"
It depends on many different factors. I will cover them below.
But the first thing to understand is what the VA itself says. The VA states that it takes between 8 and 18 months for a rating decision for compensation.
So that is the benchmark.
Now, factors that impact this are many.
THe man factor is how well the claim is organized.
You can file a claim with just the VA FOrm 21-526...
But if your VSO is good, they will put the claim together on a Form 21-526ez. This is a "fully developed claim".
It requires more work up front (you have to make sure all the evidence is assembled prior to submission). But if done right you can shave months off the time to process. I have gotten compensation claims done in 2 months with this format.
They key is to make it simple...the folks at the VA who rate claims are on a quota...they must process between 4 and 5 claims a day. If you make your claim simple? They are much more likely to rate it. If it is complex, or missing information? Guess what...it goes to the bottom of the pile.
THe other issue is number of claims...if you submit for one claim, that will process MUCH faster than a claim for 47 (I have seen claims with that many claimed issues)
BotXXXXX XXXXXne: a claim can take a year or more...but if done right, I would expect an answer in less than 6 months.