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VA Begins Update of Disability Ratings

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The VA is in the process of rewriting the Schedule for Rating Disabilities.

The over 70 year old federal regulation for the disability rating criteria is being rewritten to update medical terms and more accurately reflect the changes that medicine and treatment have undergone in the time since the original code was written in 1945.

The VA has been working on rewriting the code since 2009. A group of subject matter experts and physicians are reviewing each of the 15 body systems that make up the Schedule for Rating Disabilities and making the necessary changes.

The first installment of the updated schedule was released on September 10, 2017 covering the "Dental and Oral Conditions" body system. According to the VA, the new schedule will contain updated medical terms, include diagnostic codes for conditions previously rated under other conditions, add or change disability levels where needed, and combine some diagnostic codes. 

The VA says that no existing dental or oral conditions were removed from the schedule as a result of the update.

If you had a claim or appeal for a dental or oral condition pending before Sept. 10, 2017, the VA will consider both the old and new rating criteria when making a decision. All claims for dental or oral conditions received by VA  on or after Sept. 10 will be rated under the new rating criteria.

The VA also said that they won't change any existing disability ratings unless you file an appeal of an existing rating. In that case, the existing rating may go up or down based on the new schedule.

VA will be updating the rest of the rating schedule in the coming months until all 15 body systems are modernized. To see the entire VA Schedule for Rating Disabilities visit their website.

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