Veterans Disability Info Blog

What is an Intent to File?

An important initial step in the Veteran’s disability benefits application process is the “Intent to File” Form 21-0966.

It is possible to delay the process of filing a claim and receive maximum retroactive compensation by using the intent to file. If your claim is later accepted after filing an intent to file, you can maximize the possible effective date. Learn more about this form and how to submit one by reading on.

What Is the Purpose of the Filing?

To notify the VA that you plan to make a claim for disability benefits within the next year, you must complete the VA’s “intent to file” process. In certain cases, you may not need to go through this phase if you can gather and present proof swiftly. To put it another way, submitting an intent of filing allows you to set an effective date for your claim so long as your formal claim is filed within one year of your intent to file.

The procedure for notifying the VA of one’s plan to submit a claim is simple. A form must be completed and submitted either online or by mail. To receive VA disability benefits, you must file a complete claim within one year after submitting this form.

Intent to File: What’s the Point?

You may be asking why you should inform the VA of your intention to make a disability claim. Your claim will have an effective date when you submit your intent to file form so long as you file the formal claim within a year. There is a chance that this longer grace period (one year) will give you more time to gather evidence and present a stronger case.

The more time you give yourself to gather evidence, the better your chances of winning your case. This often saves Veterans from the headache of appealing later.

Your ailment and the incident in your service record that caused it should be thoroughly documented in your claim to the VA. You should also have a persuasive nexus letter from a medical expert. This can increase your claim’s success rate the first time around.

Instructions for Filing a Notice of Intention to File

How to File an Intent to File

Veterans and their surviving spouses now have three options for submitting their Intent to File with the VA.

  1. The easiest way to submit is by filling out the online form on the eBenefits website and pressing the submit button. To get started, simply fill out an application form and submit it to your local Veterans Affairs office – online – immediately. The sooner you do it, the sooner you can lock in your potential effective date.
  2. Your local VA Regional Office can also get the paper form. Your effective date will be the day that the VA receives it, which is likely to be within a few days.
  3. Alternatively, you can speak to a VA official over the phone and provide the information that way. Or, you may visit your local Veterans Administration office and speak to a representative there.

The Importance of a Notice of Intent to File

Veterans can use the VA Intent to File process to make a claim for compensation and pension benefits. It might take months to acquire all the required paperwork and documents for a disability claim. Submission of an Intent to File ensures that the earliest feasible effective date will be locked in. As a result, in addition to buying you some extra time, you’ll also be able to collect the maximum amount of money you’re owed.

For example, if the effective date of the benefit should be January 1, 2022, the Veteran will get a bigger retroactive payment (back pay) if they are given benefits. This back pay is for the months spanning the period of the submission of the Intent to File, and the actual payout date.

Additionally, as was noted earlier, taking advantage of this period will guarantee that you get the maximum benefit of your policy. You’ll have time to thoroughly prepare your claim and may uncover additional ailments or secondary conditions that you hadn’t previously planned to claim for. Or hadn’t manifested before.

Using the VA’s Intent to File can save you a lot of time and money in the long run, as it’s simple and straightforward to complete. In only a few minutes after submitting your application online, your file will be available for review. The VA Intent to File is a great way to begin the process of filing a claim and securing an effective date to start receiving VA disability compensation.

Filing Recommendations

To make a claim with the Department of Veterans Affairs, you must comply with the following requirements:

  1. For the VA to formally acknowledge you as an eligible Veteran, your intent to file must include personal data that identifies you.
  2. The information you want to include in your application for benefits must be included in your notice of intent to file.
  3. When submitting the Intent to File in person rather than over the phone, it is customary to include a signature.

Veteran’s Disability Info

Veterans Disability Info’s lawyers have been assisting Veterans nationwide in their pursuit of disability benefits for many years. Please contact us online or at 888.878.9350 if you need assistance with your intent to file form and the remainder of your VA disability claim.

We are Here to Help

If you are having trouble obtaining benefits, contact us online or at 888.878.9350 to discuss your case.