I meet with or talk by phone to at least 2 to 3 veterans each day. These are veterans who contact me and ask me to help them fight the VA due to the VA’s denial of the veteran’s request for disability compensation. Out of these veterans that I see each day, at least one will tell me that he or she believes that the VA is purposely denying his or her disability claim and that “the VA is waiting for me to die.” This comment is so prevalent that I almost always finish the rest of the sentence for them when they start saying it.
I feel like I write about this quite a bit, so much so that the fight that a veteran has to go through in order to claim his or her disability compensation seems pretty commonplace. I am again reminded of this problem, however, when I read stories like this: My father and the dysfunctional, broken VA.
For a veteran to receive disability compensation, he or she must have a current disabling condition that is related to an event in service, which is called service-connection. Since a service member is a member of our military 24/7, as long as the event that caused the disabling condition occurred on active-duty orders, then that condition is considered service-connected. I see so many veterans that have to fight this issue, even though there is a presumption of fitness for duty when the military takes in a service member. All veterans will “fondly” remember their physical exam at a MEPS station and how, if they were not fit for duty, it would have been discovered and they would not have been able to take their oath of enlistment.
Without sounding like a broken record, all I can tell veterans to do is to keep fighting for their disability claim when it is denied. I realize that you are implicitly being accused of being a malingerer and, really, in all likelihood a liar without that word being used, and all I can suggest to you is to keep fighting through the system. You fought for your country once when you wore the uniform so now you need to continue to fight for yourself and your family. The following are previous blog posts that I have written that may assist veterans in their fight for their disability claim:
VA Disability Blog Posts
- New Rules Announced by the VA for ALL claims filed March 24, 2015/
- Notice of Disagreement (NOD) to the VA
- What are the VA deadline dates if I am trying to get my VA disability?
- Why Does It Take So Long For My VA Disability Claim To Be Processed?
- Why Does My VA Disability Claim Take So Long?
- VA Delays – The Saga Continues…
- What Can Veterans do to Improve Their Chances of Obtaining Denied VA Disability Compensation Claims?
If you need help with your VA disability claim, as a veteran myself, I have been handling these cases for many years and I would be happy to review your situation with you. You can contact me here Thank you for your service.
Navigating Legal Issues for Military Veterans – Co-Author
Ron Sykstus is a Managing Partner of several of the Bond & Botes Law Offices throughout Alabama. He holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Arizona, Tucson, and a Juris Doctorate from the Northern Illinois University College of Law. Ron has served in numerous positions throughout the U.S. Army and now utilizes his expertise in the areas of VA issues, security clearances, military law, and bankruptcy to assist his clients when they need it most. Read his full bio here.