Claims to Reopen

It is very common for veterans to try to obtain service connection for many years. Frequently, they will file claims, get denied, and then re-file a few years later. Sometimes the process of filing, getting denied, and re-filing can go on for decades.

Many veterans make the mistake of re-filing claims without any new evidence or submitting evidence that is not really material to the issue at hand. In order to ensure the greatest degree of success in reopened claims, we recommend that you look very carefully at the reason why the VA denied your claim the last time. For instance, if they denied you before because there was no evidence that linked your disability to service, then submitting more treatment records showing the severity of the current disability is not going to help. In other words, if the issue is the lack of “linking” evidence, you should submit a medical report from a doctor stating that your disability is linked to service. On the other hand, if the reason they denied you before was because there was no evidence of a present disability, then submitting a new medical record showing a diagnosed condition could potentially aid in getting your claim reopened. The new evidence you submit should address one of the reasons why VA denied you before.