Skip Navigation

What should be my first step in the claims process?

First, protect the effective date for your claim!  Call the VA at (800) 698-2411 or MyVA41, Option #5 and tell the VA representative you want to establish an "INTENT to file a claim."  This will protect your effective date for one (1) year while we help you prepare and submit your claims to the VA.

How do I get a copy of my VA Claims File (C-File) or copies of my VA C&P Exams used in ratings?

You must submit a FOIA Request/VA Form 20-10206 to the Department of Veterans Affairs Evidence Intake Center.  If you need assistance, your Escambia County Veterans Service Officer can submit the FOIA request electronically.  Call (850) 595-2409 to set up an appointment.

What is the difference between VA disability compensation and VA pension?

Compensation is paid to a Veteran with a disability that is related to military service. To qualify for pension, a Veteran must have war time service and be permanently and totally disabled or age 65 or older. A Veteran's eligibility for pension is determined by income level and the number of his/her dependents.

Can a service-connected disability rating be changed?

Yes, it may be increased if the condition has worsened since the last C&P exam.  However, the rating may also be decreased.  This is why you should consult with an accredited VSO regarding rating criteria for the specific disability prior to submitting a new claim.

How do I enroll in the VA Health Care System?

You can either visit the Pensacola VA/DoD Joint Ambulatory Care Center (JACC) Enrollment Section (Alpha Section) or enroll on-line. Ensure you bring your DD214 (Military Discharge) showing the character of discharge.  You may contact your Escambia County Veteran Service Officer at (850) 595-2409 if you need assistance with the application.

Are there special points of contact at the VA Medical Centers for female veterans?

Yes.  The Pensacola VA/DoD Joint Ambulatory Care Center (JACC) has a Women's Clinic (Juliet Section) and can be contacted at (850)912-2000, ext. 22027 or 22245.

Can I change my address in the VA system by calling the 1-800 number?

Yes. (800) MyVA411 (800-698-2411), option 5

How can I get a copy of my DD214, military medical or personnel records?

You can submit an online request through the National Archives or you may submit a Standard Form 180 to the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, MO.  You may contact your Escambia County Veteran Service Officer at (850) 595-2409 if you need assistance with the application.

I was told records were destroyed in a fire at the National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) in St Louis, MO.  Were my records destroyed?

On July 12, 1973, a fire destroyed approximately 16-18 million official military personnel files.  It only involved Army and Air Force records. The records affected were:

  • Army: Personnel discharged November 1, 1912 to January 1, 1960 80% destroyed
  • Air Force: Personnel discharged September 25, 1947 to January 1, 1964 (with names alphabetically after Hubbard, James E.) 75% destroyed

What percentage of disability compensation must I have in order to draw the additional allowance for dependents?

An additional allowance for dependents is payable if a Veteran is rated at 30% or higher.  You will need a marriage certificate for your spouse and birth certificates for all children (including stepchildren if living with you) under the age of 18 (up to age 23 if attending school full time).  You may contact Escambia County Veterans Services (850) 595-2409 if you would like assistance with the application.

When I die, what benefits can my spouse apply for?

If your death is attributable to a service-connected cause or your 100% Permanent and Total for 10 years prior to death, your surviving spouse may apply for Dependency & Indemnity Compensation (DIC), which is a monthly payment compensating your spouse for your loss. Another potential benefit, the Survivors Pension, is payable if you served during one of the Wartime Periods (i.e., Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War) and your surviving spouse’s monthly income falls below a certain amount established by Congress. A burial benefit may be paid to a surviving spouse if at the time of your death you are in receipt of a Compensation/Pension or your death is determined to be service-connected and/or your death occurs while you are in a VA Medical Facility.

Can a widow of a Veteran who was drawing Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC), and was terminated due to remarriage be reinstated if their current spouse dies, or they get divorced?

Yes.  A widow becomes eligible to have her DIC benefits reinstated if the remarriage is terminated by death, divorce, or an annulment.

Where can I get information about Veterans' nursing homes in Florida?

Florida State Veterans Homes

Does the VA loan money for the purchase of a home?

No.  The VA will guarantee a portion of the home loan, making it easier for Veterans to secure a mortgage.  It is still the Veteran's responsibility to secure a lender and to work with the lender for a VA Home Loan Guarantee.

How can I obtain emergency assistance with payment of my delinquent utility bills, rent, etc.?

The 2-1-1 Northwest Florida (United Way) can provide you with assistance and guide you to charitable organizations; all you have to dial is 211.  Your local Veterans service organizations, churches, and community organizations may also be able to assist Veterans in need.

If I select a service organization as my representative, are there any charges or meetings I must attend?

Organizations selected to represent claimants before the VA must provide a statement that no charges, fees or gratuities will be charged or accepted. Membership in the organization or attendance at meetings is permitted, but not required.

Escambia Countuy Logo

The mission of Escambia County government is to provide efficient, responsive services that enhance our quality of life, meet common needs and promote a safe and healthy community.

Under Florida law, IP addresses and both the content of emails and email addresses are public records. If you do not want your IP address and the content of your email or your email address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in person.

All content © 2023 Escambia County, FL and its representatives. All rights reserved.