Compensation & Pension Exams – TIPS ON HOW TO HANDLE THEM

Frequently, veterans contact us concerned that they have received a letter or a phone call regarding a Compensation & Pension Exam (“C&P exam”) that the VA has scheduled. Here are some general tips that apply to any C&P exam you might be asked to attend:

  • Tell the Truth. That is stating the obvious. But you want to do your best to provide an account of your symptoms and experience that is consistent with things you have said to the VA or to a medical provider in the past.
  • Don’t be a Superhero. One of the major issues with C&P exams is that a lot of people do not want to sound like a whiner in front of a strange doctor or nurse you’ve never met before. So people downplay their pain and default to the standard, polite “Everything is just fine” response. Don’t do that.  Be sure to let that examiner know all of your symptoms, their severity, their frequency, and do not skimp on the details.
  • Don’t miss the appointment. If you miss a C&P exam, the VA can use that as an excuse to deny your compensation claim or lower your rating. The easiest path for you is to make the appointment.  If you do miss an appointment, then you want to immediately alert the VA and provide them a reasonable explanation as to why you had to miss the appointment, and then ask for the appointment to be rescheduled.
  • Don’t assume the examiner knows your history. The C&P examiners are supposed to have reviewed your medical records. But it’s very possible they will not have had time to really read your entire file.  So, be prepared to provide them a brief summary of the treatment you have received and your symptoms you have experienced since your time in the military.
  • Be polite. C&P exams can be very frustrating. But the Honey & Vinegar rule applies here. If you treat the examiner with courtesy, she will likely be kinder to you in her report.
  • Wait a week, and then ask the medical center for a copy of the examiner’s report. What C&P examiners write in their reports will often surprise you. Wait a week (it takes them a while to write that report) and then go ask them for a copy.
  • Call Us For Help. We do not charge for an initial consultation, so if you have questions about your own case, please give us a call. (877) VET-WINS.


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