Question

How does IDES work?

Answer

The Integrated Disability Evaluation System (IDES) utilizes information both in the service member’s medical records and from evaluation examinations performed by the VA, as well as the Medical and Physical Evaluation Boards (MEB/PEB) the Department of Defense (DoD) conducts to determine a service member’s fitness for duty. Service members found medically unfit for duty are informed of their military disposition (disability retirement or separation), along with their proposed VA disability rating, before they leave the service. The proposed rating and the intended disposition informs the service member of the approximate amount of compensation and benefits they will receive from the VA and the DoD.

Through the entire IDES process, Physical Evaluation Board Liaison Officers (PEBLOs) ensure service members are are aware of their options and the many decisions they, or their families, need to make. VA Military Service Coordinators (MCSs) help service members understand the full range of VA benefits they are eligible for; MCSs also assist in the VA claims process. Service members are given multiple opportunities to seek assistance and request appeals of board decisions. PEBLOs and MCSs, as well as free legal counsel, ensure service members are counseled on their options and understand the implications of the decisions being made.

This IDES brochure provides an overview of the evaluation timeline.

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