Portman, Brown Applaud Secretary of Veterans Affairs for Approving Extension for Filing of Claims and Appeals for Veterans’ Benefits

Extension Comes After Senators Urge VA to Provide Additional Time for Veterans’ Claims Due to COVID-19  

April 6, 2020 | Press Releases

CINCINNATI, OH – Today, U.S. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) applauded the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary, Robert Wilkie, for approving an extension for filing of claims and appeals for veterans’ compensation benefits. Last month, Portman and Brown wrote to Secretary Wilkie requesting an extension for filing of claims and appeals for veterans’ compensation benefits. 

“This is great news for Ohio’s veterans. Thank you Secretary Wilkie for approving this extension in order to ensure that our veterans will not be penalized for their inability to respond in the standard timelines due to the nationwide disruption caused by the novel coronavirus response,” said the senators.  

Due to the Department of Veterans Affairs closing regional offices, Board of Veterans' Appeals hearings have been postponed until at least May 1, 2020. Under current law, an extension to the 60-day period for filing a Substantive Appeal or to the 30-day period for responding to the Supplemental Statement of the Case may be granted for good cause.   

Last week, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, VA announced that veterans can submit their late benefits claims paperwork along with a request for an extension. Veterans do not have to request an extension ahead of time.

This applies to:

  • perfecting claims
  • challenging adverse decisions
  • submitting Notices of Disagreement
  • submitting Substantive Appeals
  • responding to Supplemental Statements of the Case 

VA is also accepting typed and digital signatures instead of wet signatures on forms.  Additionally, if a veteran with a pending appeal is diagnosed with COVID-19, the Board of Veterans' Appeals will advance the case on the docket. For questions, contact Veterans Affairs at: 800-827-1000.