This post describes the VA disability appeals process for decisions issued prior to February 19, 2019. Decisions received after that date are subject to the new VA appeals process.
The process of filing for disability benefits is fraught with complexity. Applicants are expected to produce legal arguments using medical evidence that proves that they acquired their disability in the line of duty and that it prevents or hinders them from sustaining gainful employment. Successful applications contain a sound medical and legal argument for why your disability crosses the VA threshold for disability applications. That is why hiring a Naperville VA appeals attorney is in your best interests.
Once you file your application with the VA, it will probably come back denied. That is when a VA disability attorney can take over the claim and begin litigating on your behalf. Our job is to coordinate your medical reports with witness testimony concerning your activities of daily living and your injury that resulted in disability.
In order to do this, we must establish three facts — You are a veteran of the U.S. armed forces; you sustained an injury that was related to your military duties; and this injury substantially limits or completely compromises your capacity to sustain gainful employment.
VA disability benefits are an important part of the contract between the U.S. military and the citizen volunteers that make up its military. When you joined the military, the U.S. government promised to take care of you if you could no longer work. However, the VA protects the solvency of its fund zealously, and all but the most obvious disability claims are accepted on the first try. Most folks will need to appeal the VA’s decision, and to do that successfully, most will need a lawyer.
The VA offers monthly stipends to those who cannot work. Disability benefits also include in-home nursing, if necessary. If a family member is providing in-home care to their disabled veteran, the family member is eligible to receive VA disability support for the care they provide to their spouse or other family member.
With your letter of rejection, you will be instructed how to proceed if you think the VA has made a mistake. The first step in the process is to file a Notice of Disagreement. The Notice of Disagreement preserves your right to appeal. However, you should not proffer any type of argument in the NoD concerning why you think the VA is wrong. This could trap you into making only one argument.
Afterward, the VA will send you a Form 9, which is a complex packet of information concerning your medical condition, witness testimony, and more. Typically, this process is so complex that it requires an attorney.
If you have applied for VA disability benefits and your application was rejected, call a Naperville VA appeals attorney today to schedule an office visit and begin the process of building your appeal.