Author Topic: VAC wait times  (Read 80483 times)

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Offline GreenArmychick

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #225 on: August 08, 2018, 18:10:16 »
I applied for CIA end of January and it was approved as of last week. Can't remember if it's backdated to when we apply and if so, how long it will take to receive the backpay.
Pretty sure it gets backdated to application. 
Thanks for reply, I might see it around Oct (hopefully this year) as I applied in April, then added Supplement application a few weeks later.

Online Teager

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #226 on: August 08, 2018, 19:24:41 »
I applied for CIA end of January and it was approved as of last week. Can't remember if it's backdated to when we apply and if so, how long it will take to receive the backpay.

You will be back dated to date of application. If your approved you should see the money within a week or two. If you have my VAC Account you can view the payments there and the monthly deposits.

Offline upandatom

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #227 on: August 10, 2018, 08:29:56 »
This is what it says on MY VAC regarding my claim:16 weeks from April 27 was yesterday and I just entered step 3.


There are zero repercussions. Which is my big issue. And they won't redzone a file without showing financial distress, or medical treatment not being provided.

If I have a work project, and I have 16 weeks to finish it, and I don't, I'm fired. Plain and simple. VAC is a joke.

The liberal gov spent a tonne of money hiring people, and training them to do a job they weren't qualified for.

The way it's set up, it shouldn't be rocket science. Read the medical experts questionnaire, is it related to service, yes, does it fit the appropriate requirement for X%, yes, awarded to this. (The mental health is built around using keywords, like a PER)

Medical professionals fall under a college for their profession, they get reviewed, regularly. If their files show fraud, they lose their license.

I spent 8 hours of sessions doing the mental health questionnaire, and it took me 1 hr to find out where I am supposed to be at level, I took that to VRAB, and it was open and shut. It took me over two years in the VAC system, starting Jan 15, and getting the result Feb 17 with payout.
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Offline Tcm621

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #228 on: August 27, 2018, 15:59:59 »

There are zero repercussions. Which is my big issue. And they won't redzone a file without showing financial distress, or medical treatment not being provided.

If I have a work project, and I have 16 weeks to finish it, and I don't, I'm fired. Plain and simple. VAC is a joke.

The liberal gov spent a tonne of money hiring people, and training them to do a job they weren't qualified for.

The way it's set up, it shouldn't be rocket science. Read the medical experts questionnaire, is it related to service, yes, does it fit the appropriate requirement for X%, yes, awarded to this. (The mental health is built around using keywords, like a PER)

Medical professionals fall under a college for their profession, they get reviewed, regularly. If their files show fraud, they lose their license.

I spent 8 hours of sessions doing the mental health questionnaire, and it took me 1 hr to find out where I am supposed to be at level, I took that to VRAB, and it was open and shut. It took me over two years in the VAC system, starting Jan 15, and getting the result Feb 17 with payout.

That is one of my main complaints. Their standard has been 16 weeks for at least a couple of years now and they haven't been close since I have been in the VAC system. If they look at their data and it says they get 80% done in 45 weeks (for example) then set that as the standard and meet it. If they keep a 16 week standard and continually fail to meet it then someone should be fired.

Offline Rifleman62

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #229 on: September 12, 2018, 10:56:26 »
Thus, throwing $42 million at the problem did not perform the miraculous cure.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/veterans-ombudsman-1.4820067

Ottawa slammed for making injured veterans wait months to get support
- 12 Sep 12
Veterans told they can expect to find out within 16 weeks whether they are eligible for financial aid

The watchdog for Canadian veterans is taking the federal government to task for causing added frustration and stress to many injured veterans as they wait months longer than promised to find out if they qualify for disability benefits and other supports. Veterans ombudsman Guy Parent's scathing new report follows a review of hundreds of applications for assistance by former service members.
Veterans are told they can expect to find out within 16 weeks whether they are eligible for financial assistance and medical treatment for injuries related to their service. Parent's review found that target was achieved when it came to applications by veterans from the Second World War and Korea, but roughly 70 per cent of applications from other veterans — including those who served in Afghanistan — experienced delays.

The average turnaround time for those applications was 23 weeks or 29 weeks, depending on which files were counted, while more than a quarter of those took 32 weeks or longer — a situation that is getting worse due to a growing backlog of files. The findings were particularly troublesome for francophone and female veterans, some of whom have been waiting more than a year for a decision and whose files were disproportionately represented in those suffering from the longest delays.

"Women wait longer than men; francophone applicants wait longer than anglophone applicants
," the report reads, adding: "Any differences in wait times for decisions should be based on need." Yet Parent's review also found Veterans Affairs Canada did not have any established process for identifying priority cases and that files were often addressed in a completely arbitrary manner.

Communication problems


Compounding the problem is a total lack of transparency and communication, meaning veterans are largely kept in the dark about the status of their applications for assistance and have no idea when they will get a decision. "The most common complaint my office hears from veterans: the length of time it takes to get a disability-benefit decision from Veterans Affairs Canada," says the ombudsman's report. "The frustration and increased stress that this causes veterans and their families must be eliminated. They deserve to know when a decision can be reasonably expected." The report is likely to stoke anger and frustration in many veterans who have already expressed disillusion with the Liberals ahead of next year's election. The Liberals have repeatedly promised to improve service at Veterans Affairs, most recently by committing $42 million to address a growing backlog of applications, even as officials have blamed a surge in requests for assistance for the delays.

Parent worried the issues identified in his review will only get worse once a controversial new pension for life for disabled veterans comes into effect next year, and he called for the government to redouble its efforts to fix the problem. "Now is the time to ensure that the planning and resources required to deliver disability benefits, both equitably and in a timely manner, are in place," the ombudsman's report says. "Lengthy turnaround times for disability benefit decisions is about more than monetary compensation for pain and suffering. Many applicants have unmet health needs that can be exacerbated by waiting for adequate treatment."

In an interview with The Canadian Press, Parent was decidedly agnostic when asked if Veterans Affairs needed to redouble its efforts to meet the 16-week target, suggesting that the department should first find out if the target is realistic. Yet he was adamant that officials needed to implement a way of prioritizing cases based on need and keep veterans appraised of the status of their applications. "As soon as you cannot meet that standard and you exceed it, for whatever reason there should be right away and automatic reply or personal contact with individuals to say: 'We cannot meet the published standard."'

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Offline Tcm621

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #230 on: September 12, 2018, 13:03:39 »
The report is worth reading, and responding too. I have already sent a response to the OVO regarding a discrepancy between their report and my interactions with VAC. For those of you that just want a quick overview, here is the OVO produced infographic:

http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/eng/reports/infographics/timely-transparent-decision

Offline upandatom

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #231 on: September 17, 2018, 09:51:55 »
The report is worth reading, and responding too. I have already sent a response to the OVO regarding a discrepancy between their report and my interactions with VAC. For those of you that just want a quick overview, here is the OVO produced infographic:

http://www.ombudsman-veterans.gc.ca/eng/reports/infographics/timely-transparent-decision

I Find the ombudsman, cant really do anything worthwhile, except complain, They can write up these reports etc, but unless someone is there to enforce their requirements, then its kind of another entity that says, "the system is broken, do this"
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Offline Tcm621

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #232 on: September 17, 2018, 10:15:49 »
I Find the ombudsman, cant really do anything worthwhile, except complain, They can write up these reports etc, but unless someone is there to enforce their requirements, then its kind of another entity that says, "the system is broken, do this"

That is a problem but at least he complains directly to the people who have a say. I know both him and Gary Walbourne, the outgoing CAF ombudsman, were pushing hard for Independence rather than being under the minister they need to criticize but the government didn't feel it was needed.

Offline AirDet

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #233 on: September 26, 2018, 14:42:54 »
I had a sit down with the Minister and a member of his VAC Committee the end of August. I can tell you the minister really wants to get the cash and benefits into our hands. He admits there are many legacy procedures that hamper this from happening. I think in time he'll actually solve the crazy processing times.

As for me, I have 2 claims that have been in Step 3 for 78 weeks now. Even after the minister engaged 4 weeks ago nothing has happened.

The real problem is that the adjudicators are not motivated to solve these issues efficiently. I mentioned that since everything is based on tables. Just have VAC accredited drs complete a bingo card based on those tables. Then just plug it into a computer and you're done. The adjudicators don't need to be in the loop. That type of automation is entirely possible but it would put much of that department out of work.

« Last Edit: September 27, 2018, 08:53:44 by AirDet »
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Offline Vimy_55

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #234 on: September 27, 2018, 20:05:24 »
Understanding the wait times vary, if there is anyone with this same scenario. Two surgeries, one ankle ligament reconstruction and a follow up forefoot reconstruction less than a year later.   Claim was submitted through RCL in Nov 17, VAC received all info from them 18 Jun 18. Contacted VAC and they are finalizing claims from May 2017. On 18 Jun status is Step 3 am I looking at perhaps another year before decision. Lots of great information here, appreciated.

Offline Gabber997

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #235 on: October 23, 2018, 05:53:34 »
Has anyone heard of what the wait times are like for PTSD reassessments?  I seem to get varied answers from anyone I speak with at VAC.   

Offline purdaaay

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #236 on: October 24, 2018, 16:38:11 »
 I'm retired RCMP but I assume would be no different. I was in stage 3 at Jan 15th, 2018 for my PTSD reassement. Standard, no holdups I'm aware of. I called late last week and was told that they are currently processing Jan 2018 files. Should be any day now, I take that with a grain of salt though, lol.

Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #237 on: October 28, 2018, 12:41:46 »
Mine has been sitting near as long. Last I called they said the were working on Dec17, so there appears to be some movement. Even if it's glacial. The way I understood what I was told, was that they may be processing your file and that might even be complete. However, the review and award group only meets periodically. so you still have to wait for them.  :dunno:
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Offline Gambit2018

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #238 on: October 30, 2018, 10:09:29 »
For ppls info. My file is stage 3, week 21 from VAC’s 16 week. Serving another 20 days and I’m a Mr.
I’ve been told that if your are still serving, files etc are slow. Once you are retired, it speeds up. Who fricking knows! I’ll come back and let you’all Know if and when the gods bless my file. Cheers!

Offline Fishbone Jones

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #239 on: October 30, 2018, 11:01:37 »
It won't speed up. I'm at around 40 weeks, stage 3, instead of 16. But the good news is, they say, that they'll be getting to me shortly :rofl:
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Offline dvfisher

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VAC wait times
« Reply #240 on: October 30, 2018, 11:23:22 »
My file is at 57 weeks. I just heard back from the minister’s office, there are about 200 files in adjudication ahead of mine. They said to call VAC back in the new year for an update.

Unreal how long this takes.


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Offline meni0n

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #241 on: October 30, 2018, 11:41:59 »
Wonder how the calculations due for April are going to slow things down even more.

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Offline Gambit2018

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #242 on: October 30, 2018, 12:14:14 »
Marking time. Dog won’t like it but he gets it.
200 plus 30 weeks. Outstanding in the rain. So by my crummy calculations, I’ll get back from VA sometime in July.. expect to be kicked in the nuts after 3+years since the diagnosis.

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #243 on: October 30, 2018, 17:36:07 »
Every claim is different and every claim will end up taking as long as it takes. Not comforting, I know, but that's the way it is. There is no recourse.

Sometimes, if you can prove they are causing financial hardship to yourself, they'll flag it for a look and see if you are hard up enough to help. That also takes ?? weeks. Your claim might be settled before they decide whether you're hard up enough to be jumped up to the head of the line..

Confusing eh? :rofl:
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Offline Mediman14

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #244 on: November 08, 2018, 12:46:51 »
For anyone who is interested. I just called to get a update on my file. From one of workers, the adjudicaters are working on Jan 2018 files. I asked if this information such as the wait times was posted on the VAC website, the answer was “yes”. Maybe I was looking in the wrong area but I didn’t find it!

Offline Rifleman62

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #245 on: November 27, 2018, 08:32:53 »
https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/veterans-disability-waiting-list-canada-1.4921209

More than 3,000 veterans waited over a year for Ottawa to process disability claims
– 27 Nov 18
'The system (isn't) built for yes,' says veterans advocate

Well over 3,000 veterans waited over a year for their disability claims to be processed, reassessed or reviewed by Veterans Affairs Canada during the last budget year, according to new statistics tabled in Parliament.

Those long waits impose an unacceptable burden on the most badly injured former soldiers, said a veterans advocate who suffered through the same treatment just over two years ago when he filed his post-traumatic stress claim. "You're sitting there in limbo," said Don Leonardo, a former peacekeeping soldier.

The figures, released last week in response to a written question posed by the Conservative opposition, revealed that in the 2017-18 budget year Veterans Affairs received 36,437 applications for benefits. Of that number, 15,949 applications — 43 per cent of the total — were completed within the department's self-assigned target timeline of 16 weeks. A further 17,650 (48.2 per cent) took between four months and a year; 3,110 (8.5 per cent) of the applicants waited more than 12 months.

'Dysfunction in the department'


The files completed on time were likely "the easy ones," said Leonardo, adding he believes they probably involved simple claims such as hearing loss. The more "complex" injuries are the ones that take more time — and they're the ones that lead to extraordinary hardship when they're delayed, he said.

"If you're waiting for a year, you can't start your treatment," said Leonardo, referring to the long-standing Veterans Affairs policy of not paying for services until a claim is approved. "You're basically in limbo until you're accepted."

Conservative veterans critic Phil McColeman said the backlog — the number of cases that don't meet the 16 week service standard — is a sign of "dysfunction (in) the department" that would never be tolerated in the private sector. "It's depressing to see these numbers, frankly," he said. "If I was in business and saw these numbers, I would have to say there is something dreadfully wrong."
A spokesman for Veterans Minister Seamus O'Regan said the department has seen a 32 per cent increase in applications and a 60 per cent jump in the number of first-time disability benefits claims since 2015.

"We won't look to the previous government for advice on this matter where they, as the auditor general put it, were 'not doing enough' to facilitate veterans' timely access to mental health services and benefits," said Alex Wellstead, referring to Auditor General Michael Ferguson's 2014 review of veterans mental health services. Wellstead noted the department has hired an additional 470 staff and committed an extra $42 million to tackle the backlog. "More complex applications can take time," he said, adding that measures have been taken to simplify the application process.

A backlog built by policy?


Leonardo, however, said he believes some of the backlog — a perennial problem since the Afghan war and the concurrent introduction of new benefits — has been made worse by the requirement that Veterans Affairs conduct its own medical assessments, instead of relying on diagnoses by physicians at National Defence.

"If you're getting out the military on a medical release, why are they adjudicating the claim again when you have military doctors saying that he's unfit, or she's unfit, for service?" asked Leonardo. There have been cases of former soldiers, bounced from the military over a medical condition, being denied benefits for that illness by Veterans Affairs.

That disconnect between National Defence and Veterans Affairs has long been a sore point with former soldiers and recently-retired Canadian Forces ombudsman Gary Walbourne — who repeatedly took both departments to task over a policy he said didn't make any sense. No move has been made to change that policy since. Leonardo said that should serve as a caution to newly retired veterans.

"The system is built for no. It's not built for yes."
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Offline Tcm621

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #246 on: November 27, 2018, 17:11:45 »
Quote
...a former peacekeeping soldier

Can we all agree that this isn't a thing? Say a veteran of UN Peacekeeping missions or a soldier who deployed on peacekeeping missions but there no distinction between a warfighting soldier or a peacekeeping soldier.

Offline Rifleman62

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #247 on: November 30, 2018, 10:02:03 »
Maybe VAC should triage ALL the files in the system. Quick review for conceivably, grant the claim at the max, with a provision of non precedent approval with respect to a one time benefit, then start from scratch.


https://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/not-acceptable-thousands-of-disabled-veterans-wait-more-than-a-year-for-benefits-1.4196977

'Not acceptable': Thousands of disabled veterans wait more than a year for benefits - 29 Nov 18

Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O’Regan agrees with the Conservative opposition that it’s unacceptable that thousands of veterans waited more than a year to have their benefits applications processed. “Not acceptable to veterans. Not acceptable to me,” O’Regan told CTV News on Wednesday. “We’ve had some significant challenges with backlogs and I’m reminded of that every time I go to a veterans’ town hall,” he added.

Figures show that 3,110 -- or nine per cent -- of the 36,437 applications received by Veterans Affairs in the 2017-18 fiscal year have taken more than a year to be reviewed. Only 15,949 -- 43 per cent -- were processed within the government’s 16-week target. O’Regan blamed the delay on a 32 per cent increase in disability claims since the Liberals took office in 2015, and the fact that the Conservatives had cut about 1,000 workers from the department. “I’m not making any excuses but I am trying to give an explanation as to why,” O’Regan said. “These are benefits and services that these veterans and their families deserve,” he added. “They are owed these benefits and services.”

O’Regan said the government has allocated $42 million over two years to speed up processing but it takes time to hire people, in part because many of the positions require bilingualism. He said 470 front-line staff have already been added. “What we can do is keep doing what we’re doing, which is keep it a priority, put as many resources there as we possibly can, and hire front line staff as quickly as we can,” he said. “We’re also putting a lot of digitization effort behind the scenes so we can get stuff done quicker,” O’Regan added.

Conservative veterans affairs critic Phil McColeman called the numbers “shocking” and said they are evidence that the system needs to be “reengineered.” “Perhaps we have a capacity problem,” McColeman told CTV News. “But throwing money at it and just doing that is not sufficient,” he said. McColeman accused the Liberals of failing to take “simple steps” that could speed up the process, like forcing the military to automatically transfer medical records to Veterans Affairs rather than making the department “start from zero.”
“Veterans Affairs has to force that new veteran to get all new medical reports on their situation, a complete new file,” he said. “If they could accept (the military records), then you’re on the road to accepting a claim.” McColeman said that soldiers have committed to “making the ultimate sacrifice” if need be, and the long waits for benefits are seen “as a sign, really, of disrespect.”
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Offline Rifleman62

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #248 on: December 01, 2018, 11:26:02 »
https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/government-little-progress-veterans-disability-claims-1.4928604

Liberal gov't making little progress on backlogged veterans' disability claims - 30 Nov 18 (Video at Link)
  News follows Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O'Regan's claim that things are getting better

The Liberal government is not making much progress on whittling the down the backlog of veterans' disability claims, despite its promises to do so. Updated figures from Veterans Affairs Canada, released Friday to CBC's Power & Politics, show the number of former soldiers waiting for over a year to have their applications processed is currently higher than it was in 2017-18. The statistics show that, as of Nov. 30, there were 3,356 veterans whose claims have taken more than a year to be put through the system. That's an increase over the 3,110 cases reported in the last budget year.

Responding to a CBC News story on Monday about the initial set of numbers, Veterans Affairs Minister Seamus O'Regan claimed an investment of $42 million by the Liberal government and the subsequent hiring of 470 staff members were making things better, but offered only anecdotal evidence. He claimed he didn't have up-to-date figures for the current year. "The numbers ... we don't have the numbers yet," O'Regan told host Vassy Kapelos. "We'll wait and see. We'll have a better gauge on whether or not we're seeing something different."

The up-to-date statistics were released by the minister's office after repeated requests by CBC News. The department says it strives to decide on benefit applications from veterans within four months. It was unable to do so in more than 50 per cent of the cases last year. The numbers for the current year show not much has improved and the department appears on track to receive more claims than it did last year. As of Friday, there were 27,107 claims in the system. Of those, 15,421 — 57 per cent — have waited more than four months.

The executive director of Wounded Warriors Canada said the backlog is something that both the current and former governments have tried to address, without success. "This is something that we've heard time and time again," said Scott Maxwell. "Year over year, government to government, as a common theme of something that veterans and their families would like to see fixed going forward." He said he believes it's not something the veterans department can solve by itself, that National Defence needs to be involved at an earlier stage — before a soldier is released — so that applications can be submitted sooner.  The former Canadian Forces ombudsman, Gary Walbourne, recommended on a number of occasions that members not be allowed to turn in their uniforms until all of their veterans benefits are in place and approved. Both the defence and veterans departments are working together on what they describe as a plan for a "seamless transition" of members from service to civilian life. That plan, according to documents obtained by CBC News two years ago, was not going to be fully implemented until 2019 at the earliest.


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Offline Mediman14

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Re: VAC wait times
« Reply #249 on: Yesterday at 16:43:53 »
Late Saturday night/ Sunday Morning past I received an email from VAC indicating that one of my claims status had changed. Sunday afternoon, I checked my vac account to see, just to find out that nothing had changed. The only thing I noticed was a link leading into a vac wait times. Depending on what you applied for, disability assessments/ reassessments indicates a average of 22 weeks from the date listed in stage 3. However, for first time assessments for a new condition (other), the average waiting time lists 38 weeks.

   On a recommendation, I completed VAC form 1002 (Priority Hiring). To my surprised I noticed that VAC had placed the same condition but different side awarded condition (Rt vs Lt) on the form. I called to enquire about it and was told, it doesn't matter at all. However I noted that the primary reason for my future release is because of the opposite side of what was listed. Again the response " It doesn't matter".

 While on the phone with the VAC representative, I asked about the email I received as mention above. Supposedly it was a glitch in the system! I questioned about the wait times and if there has been any movement. The VAC employee had apologized and said, "unfortunately HQ are currently working on January 2018!