Claims processing IT overhaul begins

In January, VA announced that it would overhaul its information technology systems to improve the timeliness and robustness with which GI Bill claims are processed. The IT overhaul will be implemented in four phases - the first of which began earlier this week.

The first phase is a "pilot release" distributed to a limited set of claims processors. The release hopes to eliminate the need for external job aids to process Post-9/11 GI Bill claims. Mainly, it will give claims processors the ability to complete original claims; automatically calculate awards, including tuition, fees, housing, books and supplies; factor in kickers for users of the Yellow Ribbon Program, Montgomery GI Bill and Reserve Educational Assistance Programs; and automatically calculate awards for overlapping terms and intervals.

While complete functionality for the subsequent releases has yet to be determined, VA anticipates the second phase will be implemented June 30. Chiefly, it will include the remaining features necessary to migrate the claims processors off the interim processing system, which has been in use since VA announced the IT overhaul in January.