The date as of which the VA calculates its decision to grant, increase, reduce, suspend, or terminate benefits. The general rule for establishing the effective date for any award is either (A) the date the VA received the claim, or (B) the date that entitlement to the benefit arose, whichever is later. 38 U.S.C. Â§ 5110(a); 38 C.F.R. Â§ 3.400 (2001).