Claiming Veteran Disability Benefits
Southern California Veterans Lawyer Fighting for Your Right to Benefits
Obtaining disability benefits for PTSD, TBI and other service related conditions shouldn't be difficult, but it often is. According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, you are eligible for disability compensation provided that your disability is service-related and you were discharged under other than dishonorable conditions. Unfortunately, many disabled veterans encounter delays lasting months or even years before their claims are approved, while still others are wrongfully denied. You can significantly improve your chances of success in the situation by working with an attorney from the CALIFORNIA VETERANS RIGHTS CENTER. By choosing our firm, you will have a former U.S. Marine Corps Judge Advocate and current Lieutenant Colonel and Judge Advocate for the California Air National Guard, and a team with more than 30 years of experience backing you up.
We can assist you with preparing your VA Form 21-526 if you are claiming your own benefits, or VA Form 21-534 for survivor's benefits, helping you gather the necessary medical evidence and testimony to support your claim and guiding you to avoid common mistakes which could result in your claim being denied. Realize that the VA personnel who review your application will be looking for any excuse to deny it, so it is in your best interests to retain experienced legal counsel to safeguard your personal interests. We can also fight unnecessary delays, appeal a wrongful denial or challenge an unfair disability rating. Whether you suffer from PTSD, TBI or another condition such as Agent Orange exposure, limb amputation, spinal cord injury, eye injury or hearing loss, let us help you!
PTSD: A Major Health Crisis
If you suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, we want to help you secure the benefits you deserve to help you cope with the condition and move forward in life. Veterans are more than twice as likely to commit suicide as non-veterans and the Katz Suicide Study, dated February 21, 2008, found that suicide rates among veterans are approximately 3 times higher than in the general population. The VA's own data indicate that an average of four to five veterans commit suicide each day. A document from the VA Inspector General's Office, dated May 10, 2007, indicates that the suicide rate among individuals in the VA's care may be as high as 7.5 times the national average. According to internal VA emails, there are approximately 1,000 suicide attempts per month among veterans seen in VA medical facilities.
Prior to its official recognition as a clinical condition in 1980, PTSD was often referred to as "battle fatigue" or "shell shock" in all of our major campaigns in the 20th Century. Veterans from all our major conflicts have suffered PTSD, and veterans today are suffering every day from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). While more recognition is given to this disorder among our warriors from the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns, let us never forget that veterans who served our country long before OEI and OAI suffered and are suffering from PTSD, and we need to help them as well as our younger veterans.
PTSD causes a variety of symptoms, including reliving the event, avoiding situations with factors that tend to remind the individual of the event, feelings of numbness or being "keyed up," which is also referred to as "hyperarousal." It can also lead to feelings of depression, hopelessness and despair, chronic pain, alcohol and drug abuse and problems with employment or relationships that can ruin the individual's life.
Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury, which can occur any time the head receives a sudden blow or an injury which penetrates the skull, will often leave the victim with life-long physical symptoms including dizziness and nausea, cognitive difficulties, behavioral disturbances, depression and even changes in personality. It is among the most common injuries among veterans, and has been referred to as being the signature wound of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Common causes include motor vehicle collisions, falls and being hit with blasts and bullets.