Prior to 2019, the Notice of Disagreement, or NOD, featured prominently in the VA disability appeals process. This document was a crucial component to a successful appeal; without it, your appeal would not even progress. No matter the merits of your appeal, if you did not prepare or file your NOD as you should, then your appeal would not be considered, and you would have to start the disability claim process over.
In February 2019, the VA disability appeals process got an overhaul with the implementation of the Veteran Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act, often referred to as simply the AMA. However, this new scheme does not mean veterans are completely done with the NOD.
The Notice of Disagreement and Legacy Appeals
When the AMA went into effect, veterans whose disability claims were adversely decided before February 19, 2019, had a choice. They could take steps to shift their appeal to the new AMA process, or they could continue with the “old” process. Those appeals that were pursued under the pre-AMA scheme became known as “legacy appeals.”
The AMA did not change anything about how the legacy appeal operated. This means that those veterans who do not switch their cases over to the AMA would still need to file an appropriate NOD.
What Goes Into a Notice of Disagreement?
Traditionally, there was no set format for a Notice of Disagreement. A NOD simply had to contain a statement indicating that you disagreed with some or the entirety of the decision of the VA regarding your claim and that you intended to appeal the decision. This would get filed with your local VA regional office, and this would start the disability appeal process. The NOD would need to be timely filed, typically within one year of the decision date.
Beginning in 2015, though, the VA required all NODs to be filed using VA Form 10182. A NOD submitted on any other form or in any other format will not be accepted. Even though this may cause confusion for veterans, the courts have recognized the VA’s ability to set these types of regulations and have upheld this requirement.
Navigating the VA Disability Appeal Process Can Be Tricky
Until all of the older VA disability appeals cases have worked their way to a final decision, there will continue to be both the AMA and legacy appeals processes. There will also likely be confusion about which process applies and what steps must be completed to successfully appeal a denial of benefits.
Your disability benefits are too important to risk by trying to appeal a denial or adverse decision yourself. A qualified and experienced VA disability appeal lawyer from Valor Firm can guide your claim through the appropriate appellate steps and to a resolution.
Call Valor Firm today to discuss your needs by dialing (504) 218-2510. Or you can text us at this number if you prefer. You are also able to contact Valor Firm online.