The Department of Veteran Affairs has reported that it has experienced significant delays in printing and mailing of notification letters and other correspondence to some Veterans. The VA has blamed the delays on a vendor contracted by the Government Publishing Office (GPO). The GPO is operating with a significant delay in printing and shipping correspondence due to staffing shortages and the COVID-19 Pandemic. The delay impacted the Board of Veterans’ Appeals ability to mail correspondence in a timely manner from July 13, 2021 through December 31, 2021. Veterans who were impacted by the delay are invited to request that the Board consider a previous submission that was not addressed or reconsider a prior determination that a submission was untimely.
If a claimant does not reply to a time-limited notification, such as making an election of benefits or services, or reporting for a scheduled compensation and pension examination, the VA will not take adverse action to deny, reduce or terminate benefits and services unless: 1) the claimant is contacted and there is documentation of their right to respond; 2) the requested information was received; or 3) the response period has lapsed.
The VA has reported that it is unknown how many people were affected, but the department was working to address the backlog, find solutions, and improve workflows to ensure that correspondence was sent “in a timely fashion.”
If you feel you may have been affected by these delays, or have any questions about your VA disability claim, please give our office a call. Gardberg and Kemmerly is committed to helping injured and disabled Veterans obtain the benefits they deserve. If you need help with a disability claim, call our office at 251-343-1111 or 800-332-1529 for a free consultation. Gardberg and Kemmerly is proud to serve Veterans across the country from our home office in Mobile, Alabama. We would love an opportunity to discuss your claim.