VA Veterans Disability Hearings
There are two types of Veterans disability hearings. There is a hearing with an employee of the local VA office
and there is a hearing with an ALJ from the Board of Veterans' Appeals.
What type of hearing you have depends
on how and when it is requested. If you have any questions feel free to e-mail me
Veterans Disability Hearing
Before Decision Review Officer at Regional Office
After you file your notice of disagreement or NOD you may request that your case be reviewed again by a Decision
Review Officer or DRO form local office. You can request a personal hearing in front of the DRO. A personal hearing
allows you to provide testimony and add insight into your case to try and persuade the DRO. You can have a representative
or lawyer to assist you. If you have a representative they will ask you questions and present your case. The
DRO may also ask questions. The process is informal and not like a court case you see on TV.
Veterans Disability Hearing
Before Board of Veterans Appeals or BVA
After you file your NOD and then get your Statement
of the Case or SOC you can file a Substantive Appeal using form VA Form 9 you send this form to your local regional office.
You can ask for a hearing before a member of the Board of Veterans' Appeals.
There are a few ways you can have
your hearing before the BVA. You can go to Washington, D.C. and have a hearing at the BVA location. You can also
request a video hearing. At a video hearing you are at your local office and the Board Member is in Washington.
Each side sees the other on a tv monitor. Although this method is not ideal since it is not as personal as an in person
hearing and many things that might be seen in person don't come across on video it is the fastest way to get a hearing.
Your last option is to have a hearing before the board member at your local office. There can be long delays with this
method because there is a limited amount of judges and they travel from local office to local office.
are also informal. The Board Member will go over all the issues in your case and tell you about the purpose of the hearing
and what will occur at the hearing. You can have a representative or lawyer at this hearing as well. Your
representative will explain your theory of the case and ask you questions. The Board Member will also ask you questions.
You will not find out that day if you have won or lost, a decision will be sent to you. The Board can allow, deny or
remand your case. A remand is when the board sends your case back to the Regional VA office to get more information
and reevaluate the case.
Chances of Winning at BVA Hearing
There are 64 Veterans Law Judges (VLJs). There is also
lawyers that work with these VLJs and many times the senior lawyers will conduct hearings as well. In the FY 2009,
there were 474 hearings held at the central office in Washington DC, there was 3375 video hearings held and 7781 travel board
hearings for a total of 11,630 hearings held that year. So you might be wondering if the way you chose to have your
hearing will impact your chances of success. In other words what are your chances of winning at the BVA depending on
which type of hearing you decide to have. It looks like it makes very little difference according to 2009 statistics.
Hearings held at the central office in Washington DC had an allowance rate of 29.62% and were remanded 42.06%.
BVA hearings held by Video were had an allowance rate of 28.12% of the time and were remanded 39.20%. Travel
board hearings were allowed 28.67% of the time and remanded 39.51% of the time.