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It is not uncommon for veterans to receive a denial after filing an application for VA’s disability compensation benefits program. In fact, most applicants will receive a denial before eventually obtaining the benefits that they deserve, so far from always representing the end of a claim, a denial can actually be a precursor to receiving benefits.

Depending on the reasons for your denial, you may want a VA accredited attorney to assist you in either filing a supplemental claim with new evidence or in filing an appeal of your decision, including the option of having a formal hearing before a judge. A Winston-Salem VA disability appeals lawyer can evaluate your options for a VA disability appeal and help you submit required paperwork, gather new evidence, and appear in person with you at a BVA hearing before a judge.

Reasons to Appeal

Applicants for VA disability compensation benefits must meet specific criteria. For example, they must be former servicemembers who have received a discharge under honorable conditions, suffer from a disabling condition that affects their current health, and can point to a specific incident during active duty that caused their disability.

Failure to meet any of these criteria may result in a denial. For instance, a veteran whose DD-214 shows a Dishonorable discharge is generally barred from receiving most VA benefits.

Other rejections, however, can be more nuanced. Some cases may dispute the extent of a former servicemember’s disability, leading to an appeal that asks for greater benefits than those offered by the VA. A Winston-Salem VA disability appeals attorney can review the VA’s reasons for denying your application and assist you in proving that an inappropriate disability rating has led to an insufficient benefits package.

Winston-Salem Appeals Process for VA Disability

All veterans who receive a decision from VA have several options to choose from depending on the date of their denial letter or rating decision.

For decisions issued prior to February 2019, veterans have one year from the mailing of their initial decision to file an appeal. The appeal process begins with submitting a notice of disagreement, which asks former servicemembers to state their reasons for filing the appeal, note any specific areas where they feel that an error occurred, and select an appeal path. This selection can have a profound impact on your VA disability appeal, so you should consult with VetLaw’s team of attorneys before submitting this form.

For decisions issued after February 2019, there are multiple options to choose. If you have new evidence to submit, the fastest path may be to submit a supplemental claim. If you do not have any further evidence to submit, you may want to choose a Higher Level Review, or HLR, decision. This path is generally relatively quick and allows a more experienced VA employee time to review your case and issue a new decision

Finally, the most intensive appeal path involves requesting a review of your case with the Board of Veterans’ Appeals. This option generally takes more time but also may offer the best chance for success. Although hearings are optional, the ability to present your case in person before a Veterans’ Law Judge is very helpful for many veterans. A VA disability appeals lawyer in Winston Salem can evaluate your options and help you choose the legal path that presents the best chances for a successful appeal.

Let a Winston-Salem VA Disability Appeals Attorney Help

The receipt of a denial letter after applying for VA disability compensation benefits can be disheartening, to say the least. However, this is often a normal part of the process, as receiving benefits after a single application is rare. Fortunately, a VA-accredited attorney can help you understand the reasons for your denial and pursue an effective appeal.

The VA may deny a claim for many reasons—like providing an inaccurate date of an injury, for example. Other cases can be more complex, and you and the VA may disagree as about the extent of your injury and its effects on your current health.

A Winston-Salem VA disability appeals lawyer can help you move your case forward by explaining the legal reasons for your denial, choosing an appeal path that may support your case, and filing paperwork on your behalf. Your time to file an appeal may be running out, so call our team today to schedule a consultation.