We have helped veterans in California and throughout the nation appeal their denied VA disability claims. If you have received a negative decision from the VA – we can help! Our team will review your case for free to determine your best course of action.
There are three main criteria involved when determining if a veteran in California is able to receive disability benefits from the VA. A veteran will need to prove that they meet each of these criteria in order to file their disability claim with the VA.
The VA has specific requirements when it comes to meeting their definition of veteran for purposes of disability compensation. These requirements mainly include the period of service as well as the discharge type. The minimum service period varies depending on when the veteran served, and the discharge type generally needs to be anything other than Dishonorable. Certain “Other than Honorable” discharges may serve as a bar to benefits as well, depending on the circumstances.
When filing a claim with the VA, it is important to be very thorough and avoid vague information. A detailed list with full names, body parts, and symptoms for each disability you are seeking entitlement for is crucial for the VA to be able to confirm that you meet their criteria.
You must be able to connect your disability to your service. Providing the VA with complete medical records, documentation from your doctor, and a medical nexus letter in support of your claim will help them connect the dots on the cause of your disability
If the VA believes you have not adequately met any of their three criteria, you will be issued a denial. A denial can be issued for any of a variety of reasons, but one of the most common is the veteran’s failure to provide a medical diagnosis of their disability, or if the VA does not believe that the disability is service-related. The VA will provide a denial letter that will outline their reason or reasons, which will be crucial information when building a strategy to overcome the denial.
A denial is not the end of the road – there are several options available to veterans in California after they receive a denial from the VA. All veterans who receive a denial have the right to pursue an appeal. Depending on whether your case is considered a Legacy Appeal, or if it falls under the rules of the Appeals Modernization Act, you will need to either file a Notice of Disagreement (NOD) or file a form to choose an appeal option. These options include a Higher Level Review, Supplemental Claim, and a Direct Appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals.
A Direct Appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals is by far the most intensive of the available options. There are several options a veteran can pursue when it comes to their appeal, including a formal hearing, or submitting additional evidence to be considered by the Board. These formal hearings allow veterans to present their case before the judge who will then make the decision in their case. An experienced veterans disability attorney will be able to assist throughout the entire appeals process – even as far as representing the veteran at any Board meetings to help ensure a favorable outcome.
California is home to more than 1.8 million veterans, meaning there are more veterans in California than in any other state. In order to serve these veterans, there are numerous resources available.
The website for the California Department of Veterans Affairs is designed to help educate California veterans about state and federal benefits that are available to them.
There are three regional benefits offices in California for veterans to seek assistance when it comes to their VA benefits.
There are seven VA healthcare systems located throughout California:
A California VA Disability Lawyer’s role is to assist you throughout the confusing and often frustrating appeals process. Generally, you need to be denied at least once before an attorney can assist, but once a lawyer is involved they will often be able to quickly determine what needs to be done in order to prove entitlement.
If your VA disability claim has been denied in California, be sure to contact the VA Accredited Attorneys at VetLaw right away to help make sure you get the entitlement you deserve.
If you have been denied VA disability benefits in California, you should always speak with an experienced Veterans Disability Lawyer right away. They will be able to help you analyze the reasons for your denial, and will assist you in gathering additional documentation in order to pursue the appeal path that is best for you.
Many service-related conditions grow worse over time and as such, a veteran’s disability rating can be increased in order to better reflect their true disability. A veteran in California can request that their rating be reevaluated so long as they can provide documentation showing that their medical condition has worsened since the initial rating was determined.
Winning a VA appeal in California largely depends on the case you put together. In order to win your appeal, you will need to compile additional documentation proving your service-related injury. Working with an experienced California VA disability attorney will significantly increase your chances of winning the appeal. They will be able to guide you through the process and make sure your claim is fully documented.
Please fill out the form below, or give us a call, and we will get back to you as soon as possible. The more detail you can provide, the better we can determine if we can help you. (And even if we can’t take your case, we will do our best to offer other options, and point you in the best direction we can!)