VA Makes Disability Payments Without Evidence To Cut Backlog

The Department of Veterans Affairs is making disability payments to thousands of veterans without adequate medical evidence they deserve the benefits as the agency attempts to cut a huge backlog of claims, a department watchdog says.

Los Angeles Times: VA Overpaid $230 Million In Disability Claims, Official Tells Congress
The Department of Veterans Affairs' disability system has improperly paid former service members at least $230 million over the last few years, according to the VA's inspector general's office. The overpayments stem largely from the department's attempts to clear a massive backlog of claims for disability compensation (Zarembo, 7/14).

Fox News: VA Is Making Disability Payment Errors In Rush To Cut Backlog, Watchdog Says
The Department of Veterans Affairs is making disability payments to thousands of veterans without adequate evidence they deserve the benefits as the agency attempts to cut the huge backlog of claims, a department watchdog said Monday. Without improvements, the VA could make unsupported payments to veterans totaling about $371 million over the next five years for claims of 100 percent disability alone, said Linda Halliday, an assistant inspector general, in prepared testimony at a House Veterans Affairs Committee hearing. VA whistleblowers also revealed widespread problems at VA regional offices at the hearing, saying mail bins of disability claims were ignored or shredded so employees could work faster (7/15).

The Associated Press: VA Says It Rushed To Cut Big Backlog Of Claims For Disability Benefits
In a rush to cut a huge backlog of claims for disability benefits, the Department of Veterans Affairs is making payments to tens of thousands of veterans without adequate medical evidence that they deserve the benefits, the department’s inspector general’s office said Monday. Acting Secretary of Veterans Affairs Sloan Gibson answers reporters’ questions about improvements within the medical care system on Friday in Jackson, Miss. Without improvements, the VA could make unsupported payments to veterans totaling about $371 million over the next five years for claims of 100 percent disability alone, said Linda Halliday, an assistant inspector general (7/14).

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