To be awarded Service-Connection benefits a veteran must file a claim with the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA). A claim can be filed when a service member incurred an injury, illness or disease while serving on Active-Duty. Because the burden of proof is on the veteran it is helpful to provide any supportive documents (medical records, service records etc.) that support the claim you are submitting. However, the VA has an obligation of “Duty to Assist”, which means that VA is responsible for helping the veteran obtain records from Federal Agencies that support the Veterans’ claim if you do not have them in hand.
As this can be a highly complex process it is highly recommended that veterans DO NOTattempt to file these claims on their own. Veterans are encouraged to contact an accredited VSO to complete the paperwork on their behalf. Please give the office a call today at 724-284-5352 to talk to a VSO about filing a service connected claim.