What is a Lay Statement?

A lay statement is a testimony provided by a veteran or someone close to a veteran to help establish the impacts of service connected injuries. Many times, these statements detail how a service-connected disability affects the veteran. This evidence is meant to create a picture of your daily life. It differs from evidence such as a nexus letter which is provided by a medical professional.

Here is an example a spouse might provide in a lay statement: “My husband was outgoing before his deployment. Since he came back, he doesn’t want to spend time with our family or go out on dates with me.”

Lay Statement Examples

Who Were You With When Injured? 

  1. Someone in your unit that also experienced the event
  2. A supervisor of your unit
  3. A commanding officer with knowledge of what you were doing when you were injured
  4. Other service members that were in the same place at the same time

Spouse Statements

  1. A spouse can speak best to your moods and routine
  2. They know your conditions affect your lifestyle
  3. Your spouse can convey the impacts on your family

Personal Statements

  1. You can provide a personal statement describing how your conditions affect your life and your ability to work

Can A Lay Statement Really Help Me?

According to the VA, lay evidence, or a VA lay statement example, is acceptable for the purpose of establishing service incurrence or aggravation, in the absence of Service Treatment Records (STRs), for a combat Veteran or FPOW, if the evidence

  • Is satisfactory
  • Is consistent with the circumstances, conditions, or hardships of combat or Former Prisoner of War (FPOW) internment, and
  • Can prevail in spite of the absence of official records showing incurrence or aggravation of the disease or injury during service.

Important:  Medical evidence of a link to a current condition is still needed to establish service connection.

What Next?

It’s better to provide more evidence than less. The person helping you with your claim can assist you in gathering the evidence needed.

If you have questions about your claim eligibility or want to learn how Veterans Guardian can help fill out the form below.