10 Sep '18, 9pm

Inspector general finds VA claims backlog greater than reported

WASHINGTON – The number of backlogged benefits claims at the Department of Veterans Affairs is larger than the agency reported, according to findings released Monday from a government watchdog. The VA considers backlogged claims to be veterans’ claims for benefits that take longer than 125 days to approve or deny. The VA Inspector General’s Office reported officials omitted 63,600 backlogged claims from its count during the first half of 2016, creating a misrepresentation of how many claims were delayed. Overall, the VA’s estimated backlog represents only 79 percent of actual backlogged claims, the IG determined. “The pending backlog could be significantly understated,” the report states. The VA has been criticized in recent years for being slow to make decisions on claims, which can take years to complete. In 2013, the number of backlogged claims hit a peak of 611,000. Th...

Full article: https://www.stripes.com/news/inspector-general-finds-va-c...

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