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Veteran Disability Appeals FAQ


The Law Office of John M. Williams, LLC helps our nation’s Veterans secure the disability benefits they deserve. One of the ways we help is by providing information about Veterans Disability benefits.  Below are the answers to some of the questions we get asked frequently about Veterans’ benefits.


WHY SHOULD I OBTAIN AN ATTORNEY FOR MY VA DISABILITY APPEAL?


The attorney can help the claimant receive the maximum amount of money in the fastest time.  The disability procedure can be complicated and take years to adjudicate, but an experienced attorney may be able to expedite the process.  Among many tasks, the attorney can thoroughly analyze the claim file for any issues the VA (BVA) missed or misapplied and appeal the decision of the VA to the Board of Veterans Appeals.  The Attorney can explain what evidence was missing from the file; determine if the VA misapplied it’s the law or regulations; and, develop evidence on the claimant’s behalf.  If the BVA makes a decision unfavorable to the claimant, the attorney who is properly credentialed can appeal the decision to the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.  


WHAT IS VA DISABILITY COMPENSATION?


Disability compensation is payment for a Veteran if the Veteran is disabled as the result of a personal injury or disease (including aggravation of a condition existing prior to service) while in active service if the injury or the disease was incurred or aggravated in line of duty.  An additional amount of compensation may be payable for a spouse, child, and/or dependent parent where a veteran is entitled to compensation based on disability evaluated as 30 per centum or more disabling.  


WHO CAN APPLY FOR VA DISABILITY COMPENSATION?


A Veteran, Spouse or Surviving Spouse, and Child/Dependents are eligible. However, the VA is authorized to define the eligibility requirements for each type of benefit. The VA defines and qualifies what constitutes a spouse; and, sets conditions and limitations for surviving spouses, children and dependents.  


HOW DO I KNOW IF I AM ELIGIBLE TO FILE FOR VA DISABILITY?


In order to qualify for most VA benefits, the person applying for benefits must be a veteran or the dependent or survivor of a veteran. The VA defines a veteran as “a person who served in the active military, naval, or air service, and who was discharged or released therefrom under conditions other than dishonorable.”


A person must have served on “active duty” in the Armed Forces. This is also known as full-time duty.  However, this may encompass members of the Armed Forces Reserves or National Guard who serve on active duty. For example, a Reservist who is activated for service that was 1) full-time, and 2) for operational or support purposes, as opposed to training.


Generally, for a National Guard member to be eligible for VA benefits, they must have been activated for federal purposes. Otherwise, if they didn’t serve on “active duty,” those in the Reserves or National Guard and other specified individuals have “active” military service in a number of circumstances, mostly involving training.


I SERVED IN THE RESERVES OR NATIONAL GUARD.  CAN I STILL FILE FOR VA DISABILITY? 


Yes.


However, a person must have served on “active duty” in the Armed Forces. This is also known as full-time duty.  However, this may encompass members of the Armed Forces Reserves or National Guard who serve on active duty. For example, a Reservist who is activated for service that was 1) full-time, and 2) for operational or support purposes, as opposed to training.


Generally, for a National Guard member to be eligible for VA benefits, they must have been activated for federal purposes. Otherwise, if they didn’t serve on “active duty,” those in the Reserves or National Guard and other specified individuals have “active” military service in a number of circumstances, mostly involving training.


WHAT TYPES OF DISABILITIES ARE ELIGIBLE FOR A VA RATING?


  • THE MUSCULOSKELETAL SYSTEM
  • THE ORGANS OF SPECIAL SENSE
  • IMPAIRMENT OF AUDITORY ACUITY
  • INFECTIOUS DISEASES, IMMUNE DISORDERS AND NUTRITIONAL DEFICIENCIES
  • THE RESPIRATORY SYSTEM
  • THE CARDIOVASCULAR SYSTEM
  • THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM
  • THE GENITOURINARY SYSTEM
  • GYNECOLOGICAL CONDITIONS AND DISORDERS OF THE BREAST
  • THE HEMIC AND LYMPHATIC SYSTEMS
  • THE SKIN
  • THE ENDOCRINE SYSTEM
  • NEUROLOGICAL CONDITIONS AND CONVULSIVE DISORDERS
  • MENTAL DISORDERS
  • DENTAL AND ORAL CONDITIONS


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN DISABILITY COMPENSATION AND NON SERVICE CONNECTED PENSION?


Disability Compensation is related to an injury or event experienced while on active duty, worsened or aggravated by service, or is presumed by VA to relate to military service.


Non-Service Connected Pension requires War-time service, un-employability combined with term of service and is a needs-based benefit similar to SSDI.  The age of the Veteran can also be a factor.


WHAT OTHER TYPES OF BENEFITS ARE AVAILABLE TO VETERANS?


  • Education
  • Health Care
  • Disability Compensation
  • Unemployment Comp
  • Commissary/PX Privileges
  • Federal Civilian Retirement Credit
  • Non Service-Connected Pension


If you are having problems securing benefits, our firm can  help. We advocate for Veterans during the appeals process and are experienced at avoiding roadblocks that can delay the processing of your claim.


If you think you may be eligible for disability benefits on the basis of your service-related disability, or if you believe that your disability was incorrectly scored, contact our office at 513-791-7919 or use our online contact form. The consultation is free. We do not get paid until you get the Veterans’ benefits you need and deserve.


When it comes to helping our nation’s servicemen and women, we fight to get the benefits you need and deserve.



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