If you received a VA claim decision that you aren’t happy with, you may be thinking about appealing—and getting frustrated as you look for answers.
One term you may have heard in your search is “notice of disagreement.” It is a step in both the old and new VA appeals processes but in significantly different ways.
In this article, we explain the differences between the two appeals processes and describe how the Notice of Disagreement works in both.
Appealing a VA decision is complicated and is even more challenging when you are also dealing with a health problem caused by your military service. If you are overwhelmed and can’t decide what to do next, we understand and are here to help.
In this article about the NOD for the VA:
How do I know which VA appeals process to use?
If the VA denied your claim or if you disagree with the disability rating you received, you have the option to appeal. If you choose to appeal, it must be within one year of the decision date.
So, if you appeal, what appeals process will you use?
The good news is that you don’t have to decide because it depends on the date you received an appeals decision.
If your decision is dated on or after Feb. 19, 2019, and you file an appeal within a year of the decision date, your claim will be appealed through the AMA process.
That means if you are just now beginning the process, your appeal will be under AMA.
If you received a rating decision before Feb. 19, 2019, and you filed an appeal within one year of the decision date, it would have been appealed using the legacy appeals process.
You might not hear these terms used while you are in the process, but we hope you’ll find this article helpful in understanding how your appeal works.
What is a Notice of Disagreement?
A Notice of Disagreement (NOD) refers to one of two forms. It is critical to understand that although the forms share the same name, they are NOT the same form.
We know that is a confusing answer, but here is a simple explanation:
- If you received a rating decision AFTER Feb. 19, 2019, the NOD is VA Form 10182 and is only used in some appeals cases, which will be described below.
- If your rating decision was BEFORE Feb. 19, 2019, the NOD was VA Form 21-0958. This form is no longer used, so if you are looking for the NOD for a new appeal, be sure to use VA Form 10182.
Below are descriptions of how the NOD works in both systems.
Notice of Disagreement: AMA process
If you received your decision AFTER Feb. 19, 2019, your appeal is handled through AMA, the new process that Congress passed through the Appeals Modernization Act.
The process gives veterans three options for appealing a rating decision. Only one of these options involves submitting the NOD (VA Form 10182).
Option 1: Request a higher-level review. This option is a request for a higher-ranking person at the regional office to take another look at your case. The reviewer ONLY considers the evidence that has already been submitted. The goal is that the regional office will reconsider the case and change the decision.
Option 2: Submit a supplemental claim This option allows a veteran to submit additional evidence to the claim. The goal is that new evidence will convince the VA regional office to revise its initial decision.
Option 3: Request an appeal with the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (BVA) This process begins by filing an NOD (VA Form 10182) and choosing one of three paths:
- request that the board review the existing evidence
- submit additional evidence (within 90 days of the NOD) for the board to consider
- request a hearing with the board and submit new evidence
Notice of Disagreement: legacy appeals process
If you received your decision BEFORE Feb. 19, 2019, your appeal is most likely in the legacy process—unless you chose to opt into the new process.
If you are in the legacy appeals process, you have already filed the NOD. To learn more about the other steps in the legacy process, see Legacy VA Appeals Process Timeline Explained.
If you are beginning your appeal now, you do not need to know about the legacy appeals process.
Appeals process timeline
The appeals process can vary greatly from year to year and case to case.
For example, in mid-2021, the VA moved thousands of Blue Water Navy disability claims to the front of the line. It was great news for many Vietnam veterans waiting on decisions about Agent Orange exposure, but it also delayed the cases of thousands of more veterans.
How hiring a lawyer can help in the VA appeals process
We understand that hiring a lawyer seems like a big step. You also can see that appealing a decision is complicated. That’s why we are here.
We file and manage VA appeals every day. We have an entire team working to submit the right forms, gather evidence and support documents, and keep track of deadlines.
If you need help, call us for a free, no-obligation consultation.
The Notice of Disagreement form used under the current VA appeals system (AMA) is VA Form 10182. It is used when you want to ask the Board of Veterans’ Appeals to hear your case.