What Documents are Required to Claim VA Benefits? 


VA or Veteran Affairs benefits are crucial support systems for eligible US veterans. The VA program assists veterans who face various unique needs and issues. 

The VA initiative can help eligible veterans get compensation or support for higher education, health care needs, personal home loans, insurance, pension, and vocational rehabilitation. VA also helps people who have served our country secure employment, disability, burial, or memorial benefits.  

This guide explains all the documentation and military records needed to claim VA benefits as an eligible veteran. 

Documents Required to Claim VA Benefits 

Documentation varies according to the specific VA benefit. Here are the documents and elements required to claim VA benefits for eligible veterans: 

  • VA Form 28-1900 is required for vocational rehabilitation 
  • (VA Form 10-10EZ) will be needed to claim Health Benefits 
  • A valid US Social Security number is also required. 
  • A working bank account with direct deposit information must also be provided. 
  • If there is no record of injury during combat, some form of evidence of the individual’s disability is needed to claim disability benefits. 
  • The individual’s military and previous education records are also required for specific benefits. 
  • Other related supporting documentation may also be required depending on the specific benefits. 

Things to Consider Before Applying for VA Benefits 

Before starting an application for benefits from the VA, the first thing to consider is to understand the eligibility criteria.  If the individual is an eligible veteran, they must fill out the claim fully. 

The next step is to gather all the supporting documents and evidence required for the claim to be processed. Depending on the type of claim, other additional forms may need to be filed. Using this link, you can figure out what exactly is required for your claim.  

It is generally recommended that eligible people also send these supporting documents and proofs for speedy processing. This allows your claim to be categorized as fully developed (FDC), which is usually processed faster. 

Evidence For VA Pension, DIC, or Accrued Benefits Claims 

While processing claims, the VA reviews all the available supporting evidence requirements to determine whether an individual is eligible and how urgent the claim is. This is especially important for claimants who are filing for Veterans’ Pension, Survivors’ Pension, VA Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), or accrued benefits. 

Veterans and Survivors Pension Evidence 

The evidence needed for an FDC Pension through the VA is a filled DD214 form, a complete history of active service treatment military records, and any other supporting medical proof like X-rays, doctor’s reports, or scan results. In case the veteran is deceased, a death certificate is also required.  

Suppose a surviving spouse of an active service member wishes to claim these benefits. In that case, a valid marriage certificate or proof of marriage with the veteran must be submitted for twelve months before expiry.  

The claim can be further strengthened if the veteran’s widow has a biological child from the veteran; however, supporting proof is required. The form 21P-527EZ is related to Veterans’ Pensions and provides more information for these claims. 

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) Evidence 

While each evidence requirement depends on the specific claim, the generally required documentation includes the following: 

  • Official service treatment and personnel records from the Veteran’s National Guard or Reserve unit are mandatory. 
  • Veteran’s private medical history and their private medical records are also required. 
  • Veterans treatment records from federal facilities can provide a more neutral perspective on illness, disability, or injury. 
  • A layman-interpretable evidence of chronic symptoms of the disability can also strengthen your claim. 

Accrued Benefits Evidence 

Accrued benefits, in the simplest terms, are the backlog of pay that is owed to the veteran’s family at the time of the claimant’s death.Required documents include the Veteran’s DD214 form or official separation documents. A death certificate is mandatory to claim these benefits. 

For estate matters, a copy of letters of testaments and administration may be required, depending on the case. For claims relating to reimbursements, bank account statements and billing of medical costs will be required.  

Reimbursement claims include illness and burial expenses, thus presenting accurate timelines, the nature of the costs and requirements, and solid proof of payment is required. 

The VA Form 21P-534EZ provides more information for claims of DIC, Survivor’s Pension, and Accrued Benefits. All the evidence requirements are mentioned in section 5103 notices listing each scenario and proof that is required. 

How To File For VA Disability Compensation? 

There are multiple ways to file for VA disability compensation. You can click here to file for disability compensation online. 

You can also file a claim through the mail by downloading and printing theVA Form 21-526EZ. Then fill it out with your details and send it to the Veterans Affairs Claims Intake Center at PO Box 4444 Janesville, WI 53547-4444. 

If you wish to file the form by hand, you can bring your complete application to any VA office nearby. You can use this link to find a nearby VA office if you are unsure. 

Alternatively, you can send your application through FAX to 844-531-7818 if you are based in the United States. If you are not currently in the US, you can directly FAX your application to 248-524-4260. 

If the process is still confusing, you can consider hiring an attorney, VSO representative, or a claims agent to file the claim on your behalf. 


Knowing what documents, proof, and military records you need to file a claim is the first step to securing the help you need through these numerous VA benefits. 

This short guide helps eligible veterans or their family members understand the forms they will need and what specific requirements apply. Filing for compensation online is the least expensive and simple method of getting VA assistance.  

With an online application, individuals do not need to inform their intent and are provided with an effective date as soon as they start filling out the form. 


Do I have to submit evidence with my claim? 

No, you do not need to submit evidence to support a claim. There are a few cases where an examination of your claim may be required to understand your condition adequately. Such cases require some form of evidence, but it does not apply to every claim. 

What evidence do I need to support my VA claim? 

Providing evidence can strengthen your VA claim; examples of proper evidence include: 

  • Hospital and VA medical records. 
  • Private reports from the hospital or your medical record 
  • Any supporting statements from family, friends, law enforcement officers, or fellow veterans. 
  • Provide details about the condition and when and how it happened.  
  • A doctor’s vouch about the worsening of your condition. 

What is the easiest disability to claim for VA? 

The easiest disability claims include the following: 

  • Hearing damage conditions like Tinnitus.  
  • Muscular or musculoskeletal conditions. 
  • Mental health issues like Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). 
  • Visible scars or disfigured limbs. 
  • Presumptive disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease. 

What is the most approved VA disability? 

One of the most approved VA disability claims is Tinnitus. It is a type of hearing damage often common for veterans who have engaged in active combat.  

How long does a VA claim take? 

It roughly takes around ninety-four days for a VA disability claim to be reviewed. 

Do you need to submit an intent to file the form? 

While it is not always mandatory, when filing through a paper form, you can submit an intent to file form beforehand for an earlier effective date.

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