How Do I File an Appeal?

Once you are denied benefits, you have one year to file an appeal. The one year period begins the date your denial letter was sent to you, not the day you received it.

To appeal your claim, you must file a Notice of Disagreement. You can use VA Form 21-4138 is used to file a NOD, and you should write a letter detailing why you disagree with their decision. 

This is what you should include in your NOD:

  • A letter at the top of your 21-4138 form
  • The date of your denial letter and your ratings
  • Explain why you disagree
  • State that you intend to repeal your claim

Choose whether you want your appeal to be reviewed by a decision review officer or the Board of Veterans Appeals.

File your appeal with the VA office.