Open your claim for VA benefits by submitting a claim with the VA. Your claim should include every condition you wish to have considered for a service connection, and all supporting evidence necessary to prove both the service connection and to support the Disability Rating requirements.
Once your claim for benefits has been received, the VA will request and review additional evidence from you, your healthcare providers, government agencies, and others. The Rating Veterans Service Representative (RVSR) will review the evidence and make a decision.
The VA will then issue a Rating Decision. The VA can either deny or grant your claim at this stage. If your claim is granted, you will receive a disability rating with an effective date. This is the date you can start receiving disability benefits. It is typically the date your claim was received.
If you disagree with the VA benefits claim decision or believe you should have received a higher disability rating, you can file a Supplemental Claim, request a Higher Level Review, or file a Board Appeal. We recommend that you seek experienced legal counsel when filing your appeal.
If your claim for VA disability benefits was denied, a VA disability benefits attorney can help you receive a higher disability rating, gather the necessary evidence to prove your claim, and tailor an argument on your behalf to the decision-maker or judge.
Many veterans suffered injuries or were exposed to hazardous conditions during their service to our country. The law allows veterans to apply for and receive benefits to compensate them for the physical and mental injuries they sustained during their military service.
Unfortunately, securing the benefits you are entitled to receive is not always as easy as it should be. That is where The Simpson Legal Group, PLLC comes in.
If you have a service-related injury and the VA has denied your benefits, The Simpson Legal Group can help. Based in Cocoa, Florida, we handle all types of service-related claims for benefits. Here are the most common VA benefits claims that we handle.
Training, exercises, and deployment can cause significant injuries. Some people compare the physical activity performed in the military to what is done by a professional athlete. But the military does not give service members the chance to let their injuries heal properly, and during times of war, taking a break is not an option.
As a result, musculoskeletal injuries among service members are common. Service-related musculoskeletal injuries may include:
The VA typically rates musculoskeletal injuries you suffer based on restricted range of movement (ROM). The VA is supposed to consider the restricted ROM during a flare-up of the pain, regardless of whether or not you are experiencing a flare-up during the examination.
Claims for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), military sexual trauma (MST), and other mental health disorders are also very common.
Previously, many veterans would turn to alcohol or other drugs to self-medicate. But today, claims for PTSD, MST, and other mental health conditions are recognized and accepted as service-related injuries, and treatment options are available.
To be eligible for a service-related claim for PTSD, MST, or another mental health disorder, a veteran must have suffered an in-service injury or occurrence. If the event was the result of combat, the VA typically will not require evidence beyond the statements of the veteran. Veterans who experienced military sexual trauma (MST) are similarly subject to relaxed evidentiary rules. For other mental health disorders, service members must establish a link between military service and the mental health disorder.
Traumatic brain injury can occur whenever there is trauma to the head. TBI is the result of two events. The first, known as the primary injury, occurs when there is a sudden and significant impact to the head that causes the brain to move violently inside the skull. The brain strikes the inside of the skull, resulting in bruising, bleeding of the brain, and damage to the nerve fibers.
The secondary trauma occurs as the brain swells and pushes against the skull, resulting in further injury as the swelling reduces the amount of oxygen-rich blood flowing to the brain.
A traumatic brain injury can have significant impacts on how the brain functions, and is a major cause of disability among service members. Symptoms of TBI include:
Many veterans who suffer from TBI also suffer from PTSD.
Sleep apnea is common among veterans and is often caused by damage to the nervous system, or as a secondary condition caused by other service-related disabilities.
Tinnitus is the most common VA disability claim. It is often a symptom of an underlying medical condition, such as hearing loss, an ear injury, or a disorder of the circulatory system.
Tinnitus involves the sensation of hearing a sound when no external sound is present. It may present as a ringing, buzzing, roaring, clicking, hissing, or humming. It is a subjective claim, because only the veteran can hear it. However, there are other service-related conditions that can make tinnitus worse, including carious head and neck injuries, Meniere’s disease, depression, anxiety, traumatic brain injury (TBI), hearing loss, and high blood pressure.
Tinnitus is often accompanied by hearing loss, which is another common VA claim.
If you suffered a service-related injury and your claim for benefits was denied, The Simpson Legal Group can help.
Veterans’ benefits attorney Nic Simpson knows that fighting the VA for compensation is often more difficult than it should be. Nic Simpson and The Simpson Legal Group have extensive experience helping veterans recover the benefits they are entitled to receive. If your VA benefits have been denied, contact The Simpson Legal Group today to schedule a free, confidential consultation to discuss your case and how we can help.