VA Claim Issues May Be A Proof Problem
For many veterans transitioning to civilian life, the transition is more than getting used to changing American trends and leaving military culture. Traumatic injury, mental unease and even the normal wear and tear that comes from serving a full term of duty can make life difficult.
If you're waiting for a decision from Veterans Affairs (VA) and don't know what to do in case of another denial, take a moment to understand a few traits of the claim system and ways to make your appeal more successful:
Is Your Injury's Service Connection Clear Enough?
Getting into a new job or settling into a new lifestyle while suffering from continuous pain with costly pain relief can be solved by the compensation available for injured and otherwise afflicted veterans. Many people suffer from these problems and have different compensation or assistance programs available, but you have one great benefit as a veteran: VA disability compensation.
The compensation offers medical assistance, referrals and monetary compensation at variable rates for different conditions. The catch is that in order to qualify for disability benefits, your injury or condition must be service-connected.
Service-connection is a seemingly simple category that has a lot of exceptions and can be argued in many different ways. At its core, a service-connected condition is any condition that was caused during military service. Military service can be active duty or any form of reserve duty, just as long as the injury can be verified within your military duty.
It doesn't matter if you were on leave back home, out in town during a foreign port visit, working a daily duty on-board a ship or in the middle of combat; military service is defined by the time you entered the military to the time you were discharged. This distinction matters because many veterans assume that their off-duty injuries may not matter when it comes to compensation. All military injuries and conditions matter.
Proof Is The Difficult Part
You may know that you're suffering, but not all injuries and conditions are obvious to others. In order to prove your condition, you'll need documentation showing that your condition was caused during military service, such as a medical report, a service record entry or other official correspondence.
If you're fresh out of the military and nursing a few wounds--physically or mentally--document it with the VA as soon as possible. This evidence may be able to count if you're quick and thorough enough to speak with the VA. It's important to have legal advice on your side, but you should absolutely complain about your medical issues as soon as you're near a VA facility.
Many initial claims and appeals fail because they lack this supporting information. A veteran may have current medical results showing a problem--results that are important and required later in the VA claim process--but those injuries could have happened after leaving the military. Without time-based proof, the status of your condition may be in question.
If you need help finding proof or need an expert to comb through your record and military experience, contact a personal injury attorney to begin planning your appeal. Contact a company such as Vaughan & Vaughan to learn more.