Congressional Impact on VA RO
Veteran Disability Lawyer
We get asked by veterans “should I get my Congressman to write VA about the delay and my claim.?” No is the short answer. It is a rare case that we ask for Congressional assistance. Why? Because VA stops everything it is doing on a case to respond to a Congressional staffer’s letter. A good example of this is a response we recently received from VA about the status of a claim:
“Mr. Fausone – We have received communication from the Des Moines Regional Office. They have stated the claim file is currently at the regional office and a review of the file has been made. The Veteran’s appeal is still open and pending a decision. (The Veteran had filed a claim for increase for Individual Unemployability (IU) during the appeal, which needed to be processed. There was also congressional interest-3 letters-which had to be reviewed and responded to in the past few months.) The appeal is currently pending completion of a Supplemental Statement of the Case by the appeals team Rating Veterans Service Representative.
VA is telling us that the claim for IU filed during the claim and the 3 congressional interest letters was slowing down the process at the Regional Office (RO). The 3 letters in the past few months “had to be reviewed and responded to” by the VA staff. This means the RO is not working on the claim. So involve your Congressman selectively and not repeatedly. VA is slow enough without giving them another roadblock to getting the basic work done.