Benefit and VA Claims Services

File a VA claim

Accredited DVS staff members are representing NYC veterans and their families in claims for benefits from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).  Schedule an online appointment with a VA-accredited DVS staff member to represent you in your claim by contacting DVS at claims@veterans.nyc.gov or 212-416-5250.

If possible, please gather the following materials before meeting with DVS:

  • Discharge or separation papers (DD214 or equivalent)
  • Medical documentation (doctor and hospital records)
  • Dependency records (marriage and children's birth certificates)

Please note: If you do not have any or all of the above materials, DVS can still represent you in a claim for VA benefits but the process will be faster if you can gather these materials. 

DVS helps veterans and their families file for federal benefits such as:

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Disability Compensation

Disability Compensation is a tax-free monthly benefit that the VA pays for disabilities caused or worsened by a veteran's military service. 

There is no time limit to file a claim for disability compensation. You can be several decades removed from your date of discharge from the military, but you can still be awarded disability compensation from the VA if you can prove that a current disability was at least as likely as not caused or worsened by your military service.

There is no income limit to file a claim for disability compensation. 

If you already have a disability compensation from the VA but your medical condition has worsened DVS can represent you in a claim for a higher monthly payout. 

Veterans with particularly sever disabilities caused by or worsened by their military service can be eligible for a heightened monthly payout known as Special Monthly Compensation. For example, veterans whose service-connected disability causes them to require assistance with activities of daily living an be found eligible for a heightened monthly benefit known as "Aid and Attendance."  

Non-Service-Connected Pension 

Non-service-connected pension is a tax-free monthly benefit that the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pays to Veterans who served during a wartime era, currently has a total and permanent disability (which does not have to be related to military service), and has a low income and limited personal assets.

Wartime era service does not require service in a combat zone. Instead, wartime era service means that the Veteran served on active duty somewhere in the world during a time period when the United States was deemed to be at war. Those specific time periods are:

  • World War II: December 7, 1941, to December 31, 1946
  • Korean War: June 27, 1950, to January 31, 1955
  • Vietnam War [with service in Vietnam]: February 28, 1961, to May 7, 1975
  • Vietnam War [without service in Vietnam]: August 5, 1964, to May 7, 1975
  • Gulf War: August 2, 1990, through the present day
Income and assets for pension eligibility are calculated using established unique rules. For example, certain high-value assets, such as a house and any vehicles necessary for household use, are not counted against you in determining the value of your personal assets.You can also receive a higher pension payout if you meet all of the basic criteria for pension eligibility and you also are housebound or you require assistance with at least two activities of daily living.  

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation 

Dependency and Indemnity Compensation(DIC)is a tax-free monthly benefit that the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) pays to eligible surviving spouses, children, and dependent parents of Veterans. Eligible survivors become eligible for DIC if they can prove that the Veteran:

  • Passed away from a disability that was at least as likely as not caused or worsened by the Veteran’s military service; or
  • Passed away while on active duty; or
  • Had a VA disability compensation rating verifying that their condition was totally disabling for at least 10 years prior to death (or for 5 years between their military discharge date and their date of death)