Ask a Service Officer: Missed compensation, pension exam

Q. I missed my compensation and pension VA exam. What should I do? 

A. After you've applied for disability compensation and pension, you will receive a letter or phone call telling you when and where to report for an exam. During a compensation and pension VA exam, a doctor will evaluate your medical condition(s) and then send a report to the VA regional office where your claim will be processed. It's the VA regional office, not your doctor, who decides your disability compensation and pension eligibility.

The Veterans Healthcare Administration (VHA) has only two options for noting your attendance to a compensation and pension exam: reported or failed to report. If your exam notification was returned by mail, you received notice after the exam date or you didn’t attend for various reasons, "failed to report" is still noted in the system. I advise you to ensure that your local VA hospital or clinic has your current mailing address and phone number on file. Otherwise, you may not receive your compensation and pension exam notice.

If you missed your exam, you may or may not be able to reschedule it by calling the compensation and pension unit at the VA hospital or clinic. You can explain in writing to the Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) why you missed your exam and request a new one. Or, contact the VA regional office. If VHA has returned mail or other proof that you were not completely notified of the exam, it can help you in your request to VBA for a new one.

Please contact your American Legion accredited service officer for further assistance with this matter. To find a Legion service officer in your state, visit: