To learn more about VA disability benefits, eligibility, and how to apply, refer to this page. Click here to file a disability claim or track a claim you have already prepared. 

The VA offers different types of disability claims based on the needs of specific conditions. When filing these claims, you also are submitting supporting documentation to approve your access to disability benefits.

Standard Claim

Through this process, the VA will help you gather the necessary evidence to support your disability benefits claim.

The VA will need permission to gain access to your medical records from your:

– Non-VA doctor

– Other non-VA health providers

– State and local government

– Current or former employer

This claim can take longer to process than others due to the collection of supporting documents.

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Fully Developed Claim

For this claim, you will send in all evidence to support your disability benefits claim yourself.

Supporting evidence needed may include:

– Records of medical treatment for claimed disability while in military service

– Military personnel records that relate to claimed disability

– Private medical records related to claimed disability

You will receive a decision when:

– You’ve sent all evidence

– VA has access to federal records if needed

– VA has arranged for any added health exams or doctor’s opinions

This claim can result in a faster decision process.

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Original Claim

This is available to a veteran, survivor of a veteran, or service member with a disability who is within 180 degrees of separation.

Additionally, this is to be used as the first claim for a certain disability.

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Reopened Claim

This is only available if you had a disability benefits claim denied in the past, and allows you to reopen a claim.


– The VA denied your claim at least one or more years ago

– You did not file an appeal at that time

– You have new, material evidence that the VA has not seen before

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New Claim

File this claim if you already get disability benefits, but might qualify for more.

Potential added benefits include:

– More financial support

– Special monthly payments

– Shift to individual unemployability status

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Secondary Claim

This claim is used if a service connected disability causes another disability, or makes a condition you already have worse. This claim is to receive benefits for that new, second disability.

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Pre-Service Claim

Through this process, you can receive benefits for a disability that you had before entering the military, but worsened during your service.

The amount of compensation is based on the level of aggravation. This means that your benefits depend on the rating of how much worse your service made your disability.

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In-Service Claim

Use this claim if your disability was caused by an illness or injury you received in the line of duty. These conditions cannot be caused by willful misconduct, use of alcohol, or drug abuse.

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Pre-Discharge Claim

For this claim, you can file for disability benefits if you have a disability and are currently in pre-discharge status. You must file a claim withing 180 days before any of changes are made to your status.

These changes include separation, retirement, release from full time reserve duty, and release from national guard duty.

Filing a claim while you are in pre-discharge status can speed up the decision process.

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Post Service Claim

This claim is for veterans who have a disability related to their military service, but didn’t appear until after leaving.

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