Congressman Scott Peters

Representing the 52nd District of California

Veterans

Department of Veterans Affairs 

Can Congressman Peters help me?

My office is able to assist San Diego Veterans navigate the VA and other federal agencies to ensure you receive the benefits that you have earned.

We can help you:

  • Get a status update on an existing claim.
  • Obtain copies of your personnel records, your claims files, or other documents.
  • Request that a claim be expedited (only applicable to folks in severe financial hardship, advanced age, or terminal illness).
  • Retrieve replacement medals for Veterans and their families.
  • Correct a discharge status.
  • Understand your Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits.
  • Assist you with concerns involving healthcare and the Medical Center.

We cannot:

  • Force the VA to decide in our constituent’s favor.
  • Override a VA decision/determination.
  • File a claim for you (see VSOs located at the SDRO here).
  • Expedite a claim if it does not meet the VA’s criteria.
  • Guarantee a particular response or outcome.
  • Intervene in matters under the jurisdiction of any court, state, or local government body.

Please keep in mind that:

The Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) is working its way through a backlog of appeals.  If you have filed an appeal and are awaiting a de novo review by a Decision Review Officer (DRO), [unfortunately it can take up to 5 years before it is completed] [the BVA is processing Form 9s received in mid-2013]. The BVA processes Form 9s in the order in which they’re received chronologically. Please note that our office does not have the ability to unilaterally diminish this backlog and unless you qualify for expedited processing, we cannot speed up this time frame.

The VA does not have the legal authority to restore GI Bill entitlements that a Veteran has used at a school or program. The VA urges current and prospective students to thoroughly research the school or program of their choice.  If a school or program’s accreditation is revoked or if their approval to accept GI funding is reversed, our office may not have the ability to restore your benefits.

To begin the process, please complete, print & sign the privacy release form below. Completed forms should be mailed to our office at 4350 Executive Dr., Suite 105, San Diego, CA 92121. Once we have the form, we can begin to work on your case. 

As we address your concerns, please bear in mind that we cannot force an agency to act in your favor.  The rules of the U.S. House of Representatives do not allow us to intervene in, or influence the outcome of, cases that are under the jurisdiction of any court.  Finally, our office cannot intervene in matters under the jurisdiction of local, state, or foreign governments.

We look forward to helping you!

 

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What is the Veterans History Project and how can I be involved?

The Library of Congress’ Veterans History Project collects first-hand accounts of U.S. Veterans in the form of audio and visual recordings, diary/memoir/journal pages, personal correspondence, photographs, and more. Veterans who served during wartime, as well as U.S. citizen civilians who were actively involved in supporting war efforts (such as war industry workers, USO workers, flight instructors, medical volunteers, etc.) are invited to share their valuable stories to be documented for future generations in the Library of Congress. You can find more information about the VHP here.

My San Diego Office can assist you in recording an interview and/or facilitate the submission of your original correspondence, photographs, or journal pages to the Veterans History Project.

What does it take to expedite a claim and how can your office help?

The VA may expedite the processing of your claim if you are able to provide documentation to indicate that you meet one of the following criteria:

Advanced age (85+ for claims, 75+ for the Board of Veterans Appeals)

Homeless or facing immediate homelessness (You will be required to submit supporting documentation i.e. an eviction notice, utility shut-off, notices, etc.)

Terminal or serious illness (You will be required to submit supporting documentation i.e. doctor statements, medical evidence, etc.)

Financial Hardship (You will be required to submit supporting documentation i.e. VA Form 10-10HSVA Form 5655, notice of eviction, past due bills, repossession of a vehicle, etc.)

My San Diego Office is able to assist you in submitting paperwork and other supporting documentation to the VA on your behalf to ensure swift receipt.

I am homeless or about to be homeless. What help is available to me?

The National Call Center for Homeless Veterans is available to assist. You can reach them at 1-877-4AID-VET or 1-877-424-3838 and find their website here.

If you have a pending claim at the VA, you will want to reach out to them to let them know about your circumstance. The VA provides expedited claim processing for Veterans facing homelessness.

My San Diego Office can assist you by communicating this to the VA and requesting expedited processing on your behalf.

How can I apply for a medal, award, or decoration that I earned while in the service?

You can begin the processing of requesting a replacement medal, award, or decoration by reaching out to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC). You can find details about the process here.

My San Diego Office can assist you by submitting a request to NPRC on your behalf or checking on the status of an existing request.

How can I get a copy of my military records?

If you are seeking your military records, you will want to submit this request with Standard Form 180 to the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC). You can find more details about this process here.

My San Diego Office can help by submitting this request on your behalf or checking on the status of an existing request.

A veteran in my family filed a claim but passed away before it was decided. What do we do?

The VA will continue to process a claim even if the claimant has deceased. However a family member should submit the VA Form 21P-0847, Requesting Substitution of Claimant Upon Death of Claimant. Note that should the claim be granted, the surviving family member would be entitled to the accrued benefits and not the monthly compensation.

My San Diego Office can assist you in submitting the appropriate documentation the VA on your behalf.

Related Content

Information for Military Personnel.