How to Apply for Veterans Disability
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Veterans Disability Benefits in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania is home to over 750,000 veterans who have served our nation bravely. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) shows its appreciation for these heroes by offering a variety of important benefits to Pennsylvania's veterans.
One very important benefit is the Veterans Disability program. This program provides monthly financial assistance to eligible veterans who are dealing with disabilities related to their military service.
Understanding the VA Disability Program
The VA uses a rating system to measure the severity of a veteran's disability. Each condition gets a rating from 10% to 100%. The more severe the condition is, the more monthly financial support the veteran can receive.
For most veterans, a Compensation & Pension (C&P) examination is part of the process. This VA-conducted medical review helps assess the disability and assign it a rating.
In cases where a veteran has multiple disabilities, each condition is individually rated using the VA's Schedule for Rating Disabilities. The VA then uses a formula to give a single, combined disability rating to the veteran.
Eligibility Guidelines for VA Disability Benefits
To be considered eligible for VA benefits, Pennsylvania veterans must meet several eligibility requirements.
Both of these must be true:
- You have an existing condition, either physical or mental, that impacts your health, and
- Your service history includes active duty, active duty for training, or inactive duty training.
And, at least one of the following must be true:
- You incurred an injury or sickness during your military service that can be connected to your current condition. This is known as an in-service disability claim.
- An existing injury or illness from before your military service worsened due to your service — called a pre-service disability claim, or
- You have a disability that is associated with your active-duty service but it only manifested after your service ended. This is known as a post-service disability claim.
A successful VA disability claim depends on having medical proof that ties your condition to your military service. It can help to keep an accurate medical record during your service. Having documented medical evidence can greatly improve your chances of receiving benefits.
Also, how you separated from the military can impact your eligibility. If you received an honorable or general discharge, you're generally able to access all VA benefits like health care, education assistance, and housing support. However, if your discharge was less-than-honorable, you may be ineligible for VA benefits.
Applying for VA Disability in Pennsylvania
Before applying for disability benefits, gather all necessary paperwork and medical evidence. Your military records, any medical reports, and your DD214 form that verifies your military service are all essential. You can also include witness statements that help link your disability to your time on active duty.
When you're ready to apply, visit VA.gov. Click on "Sign in to start your application" and follow the instructions.
Need help? Call the VA benefits hotline: 800-827-1000
You can also mail your application or apply at a VA office in person.
To apply by mail, download and fill out the Veterans Application for Compensation and/or Pension (VA Form 21-526EZ), and mail it to:
Department of Veterans Affairs
Claims Intake Center
PO Box 4444
Janesville, WI 53547-4444
If you prefer to apply in person, you can visit your local Pennsylvania VA office. Veterans service officers are standing by to assist you if you need any help.
The VA's processing times can fluctuate, but it usually takes 3-6 months to process your claim, depending on the details of your claim and the information you provided.
Appealing a Denial
If your VA disability claim is denied, you have the right to appeal. Complete a Notice of Disagreement form and send it to the VA within one year from the date of the denial notice.
When submitting your Notice of Disagreement, be sure to include your medical records, relevant documents, and supporting statements that establish a connection between your disability and your military service.
To win your appeal, you must prove that your disability is real and directly tied to your active military service.
More VA Benefits Available to Pennsylvania Veterans
In addition to disability benefits, the VA offers a wide range of benefits to help improve the lives of veterans and their families.
Pennsylvania veterans can access the following VA benefits:
- Education and Training
- Health Care
- VA Loans
- VA Life Insurance
- VetSuccess on Campus
- Dependents and Survivor Benefits
- VA Burial Benefits
- VA Pension
These VA benefits significantly enhance the quality of life for veterans and their families, providing valuable resources across a variety of areas.
For example, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) is the largest integrated health care system in the United States, operating 1,300 health care facilities across the U.S.
If you're looking to purchase a home, the VA Loan program can help you get a mortgage loan. Additionally, the VA Pension program helps ensure financial stability, while VA Life Insurance provides peace of mind knowing that a veteran's family will have some financial protection in the event of their passing.
There is also the VetSuccess on Campus program, which offers crucial support to veteran students, including Education and Training programs that open doors to new career opportunities and personal growth.
With VA Burial Benefits, families find some comfort in knowing that their loved one will be honored for their service. Dependents and Survivor Benefits ensure that families of veterans are cared for, even after a loss.
For disabled veterans, VA Disability benefits are available to the veterans who served their country honorably. If you're a Pennsylvania veteran dealing with health issues related to your service, contact the VA and apply for disability benefits today.
Pennsylvania — VA Office Locations
Veterans Benefits Administration
|Philadelphia Regional Office||5000 Wissahickon Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19144 Mailing Address: P.O. Box 8079 Philadelphia, PA 19101||215-842-2000|
|Pittsburgh Regional Office||1000 Liberty Avenue Pittsburgh, PA 15222||800-827-1000|
|Intake Site At Carlisle Barracks||Army Community Services, Building 46, Room 118 Carlisle, PA 17013|
|Intake Site At Willow Grove||Fleet & Family Support Center Willow Grove, PA 19090|
National Cemetery Administration
|North Atlantic District||5000 Wissahickon Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19144||215-381-3787|
|Allegheny Cemetery Soldiers' Lot||4734 Butler Street Pittsburgh, PA 15201||724-746-4363|
|Ashland Cemetery Soldiers' Lot||630 South Hanover Street Carlisle, PA 17013||717-865-5254|
|Indiantown Gap National Cemetery||60 Indiantown Gap Road Annville, PA 17003-9618||717-865-5254|
|Mount Moriah Cemetery Naval Plot||62nd Street and Kingsessing Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19142||215-504-5610|
|Mount Moriah Cemetery Soldiers' Lot||62nd Street and Kingsessing Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19142||215-504-5610|
|National Cemetery of the Alleghenies||1158 Morgan Road Bridgeville, PA 15017||724-746-4363|
|Philadelphia National Cemetery||Haines St. and Limekiln Pike Philadelphia, PA 19138||215-504-5610|
|Prospect Hill Cemetery, PA||700 North George Street York, PA 17404||717-865-5254|
|Washington Crossing National Cemetery||830 Highland Road Newtown, PA 18940||215-504-5610|
Veterans Health Administration
|Coudersport||24 Maple View Lane, Suite 2 Coudersport, PA 16915||607-664-4670|
|Wellsboro||1835 Shumway Hill Road Wellsboro, PA 16901||607-664-4680|
|VISN 4: VA Healthcare - VISN 4||1010 Delafield Road Pittsburgh, PA 15215||412-822-3316|
|VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System||University Drive Pittsburgh, PA 15240||412-822-2222|
|Altoona - James E. Van Zandt VA Medical Center||2907 Pleasant Valley Boulevard Altoona, PA 16602-4377||814-943-8164|
|Butler VA Health Care System||353 North Duffy Road Butler, PA 16001-2480||800-362-8262|
|Coatesville VA Medical Center||1400 Black Horse Hill Road Coatesville, PA 19320-2096||610-384-7711|
|Corporal Michael J. Crescenz VA Medical Center||3900 Woodland Avenue Philadelphia, PA 19104||215-823-5800|
|Erie VA Medical Center||135 East 38th Street Erie, PA 16504||800-274-8387|
|Lebanon VA Medical Center||1700 South Lincoln Avenue Lebanon, PA 17042||717-272-6621|
|Wilkes-Barre VA Medical Center||1111 East End Blvd. Wilkes-Barre, PA 18711||570-824-3521|
|Philadelphia MultiService Center (Philadelphia County)||213-217 North 4th Street Philadelphia, PA 19106||215-923-1163|
|Allentown VA Outpatient Clinic (693B4)||3110 Hamilton Boulevard Allentown, PA 18103||610-776-4304|
|Armstrong County VA Outpatient Clinic||11 Hilltop Plaza Kittanning, PA 16201||724-545-8420|
|Beaver County Outpatient Clinic||300 Brighton Ave., Suite 110 Rochester, PA 15074||724-709-6005|
|Berks County VA Clinic (595GD)||2762 Century Boulevard Wyomissing, PA 19610||800-409-8771|
|Cedar Crest Boulevard VA Clinic||1605 North Cedar Crest Boulevard Allentown, PA 18104||610-599-0127|
|Clarion County VA Outpatient Clinic||56 Clarion Plaza, Suite 115 Monroe Township, PA 16214||814-226-3900|
|Columbia County Community Based Outpatient Clinic||225 Columbia Mall Drive Bloomsburg, PA 17815||570-316-4116|
|Cranberry Township VA Outpatient Clinic||900 Commonwealth Drive, Suite 900 Cranberry Township, PA 16066||724-742-3500|
|Crawford County Primary Care Clinic||16954 Conneaut Lake Road Meadville, PA 16335||866-962-3210|
|Cumberland County VA Clinic (595GA)||5070 Ritter Road Mechanicsburg, PA 17055||800-409-8771|
|Delaware County VA Clinic (542GA)||4883 West Chester Pike Newtown Square, PA 19073||610-543-3246|
|DuBois (Clearfield County) VA Outpatient Clinic (503GB)||5690 Shaffer Road DuBois, PA 15801||877-626-2500|
|Fayette County Outpatient Clinic||627 Pittsburgh Road, Suite 2 Uniontown, PA 15401||724-439-4990|
|Huntingdon County CBOC||13903 William Penn Highway Mapleton Depot, PA 17052||814-542-2800|
|Indiana County CBOC||1570 Oakland Avenue Indiana, PA 15701||724-349-8900|
|Johnstown VA Outpatient Clinic (Cambria County) (503GA)||598 Galleria Drive, Next to Gander Mountain Johnstown, PA 15904||877-626-2500|
|Lancaster VA Clinic (595GC)||212 Willow Valley Lakes Drive, Suite 208 Willow Street, PA 17584||800-409-8771|
|Lawrence County VA Outpatient Clinic||Ridgewood Professional Centre, 1750 New Butler Road New Castle, PA 16101||724-598-6080|
|McKean County VA Clinic||14 Foster Brook Boulevard Bradford, PA 16701||814-368-3019|
|Mercer County VA Outpatient Clinic||295 N. Kerrwood Drive, Suite 110 Hermitage, PA 16148||724-346-1569|
|Northampton County Outpatient Clinic||Phoebe Slate Belt Nursing Home & Rehab Center 701 Slate Belt Boulevard Bangor, PA 18013-9341||610-599-0127|
|Sayre VA Outpatient Clinic (693GA)||1537 Elmira Street Sayre, PA 18840||570-888-6803|
|Schuylkill County VA Clinic (595GF)||1410 Laurel Blvd., Suite 2 Pottsville, PA 17901||800-409-8771|
|State College (Centre County) VA Outpatient Clinic (503GC)||2581 Clyde Avenue State College, PA 16801||877-626-2500|
|Tobyhanna Army Depot (693GC)||Building 220 Tobyhanna, PA 18466||570-615-8341|
|Venango County VA Clinic||125 Home Depot Drive Franklin, PA 16323||866-962-3260|
|Victor J. Saracini VA Outpatient Clinic (Montgomery County)||433 Caredean Dr. Horsham, PA 19044||215-823-6050|
|Warren CBOC||3 Farm Colony Dr Warren, PA 16365||866-682-3250|
|Washington County Outpatient Clinic||95 West Beau Street, Suite 200 Washington, PA 15301||724-250-7790|
|Wayne County Outpatient Clinic||600 Maple Ave. Suite 2 Honesdale, PA 18431||570-251-6543|
|West Norriton VA Clinic (542GE)||2495 General Armistead Avenue, Suite A Norristown, PA 19403-3647||610-948-0981|
|Westmoreland County Outpatient Clinic||5274 Rt 30 East, Suite 10 Greensburg, PA 15601||724-216-0317|
|Williamsport OPC, Campus of Divine Providence Hospital (693GB)||1705 Warren Avenue, Werner Building - 3rd Floor (Suite 304) Williamsport, PA 17701||570-322-4791|
|York VA Clinic (595GE)||2251 Eastern Blvd. York, PA 17402||800-409-8771|
|Bucks County Vet Center||2 Canal's End Road Suite 201B Bristol, PA 19007||215-823-4590|
|Center City Philadelphia Vet Center||801 Arch Street Suite 502 Philadelphia, PA 19107||215-627-0238|
|DuBois Vet Center||100 Meadow Lane, Suite 8 DuBois, PA 15801||814-372-2095|
|Erie Vet Center||240 West 11th Street Suite 105 Erie, PA 16501||814-453-7955|
|Harrisburg Vet Center||1500 North Second Street Suite 2 Harrisburg, PA 17102||717-782-3954|
|Lancaster Vet Center||1817 Olde Homestead Lane, Suite 207 Lancaster, PA 17601||717-283-0735|
|Norristown Vet Center||320 East Johnson Hwy, Suite 201 Norristown, PA 19401||215-823-5245|
|Northeast Philadelphia Vet Center||101 East Olney Avenue Suite C-7 Philadelphia, PA 19120||215-924-4670|
|Pittsburgh Vet Center||2500 Baldwick Rd, Suite 15 Pittsburgh, PA 15205||412-920-1765|
|Scranton Vet Center||1002 Pittston Ave. Scranton, PA 18505||570-344-2676|
|White Oak Vet Center||2001 Lincoln Way, Suite 280 White Oak, PA 15131||412-678-7704|
|Williamsport Vet Center||49 East Fourth Street Suite 104 Williamsport, PA 17701||570-327-5281|