va benefits application

Case Spotlight – May 2024

Achieving 100% Permanent and Total Disability Rating for a Veteran

In a significant victory for our client, Disability Law Group successfully secured a 100% Permanent and Total disability rating from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) after a prolonged five-year appeals process. This achievement underscores the dedication and expertise of our team, particularly in navigating complex VA procedures and leveraging recent policy developments to the client’s advantage.

Our client, a dedicated veteran, initiated his claim for disability benefits in August 2019. Despite the severity of his condition, his initial Rating Decision in 2019 granted only a 10% rating, with his PTSD claim being outright denied. This insufficient rating failed to recognize the full extent of his disabilities.

When our client sought assistance from Disability Law Group in November 2022, the deadline for appealing the 2019 Rating Decision had long passed. Under normal circumstances, this would have resulted in a forfeiture of his right to appeal and the need to file a new claim, potentially losing years of retroactive benefits.

Attorney Jason Pearson, renowned for his meticulous attention to VA processes and recent policy updates, identified a critical opportunity. Recognizing the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on veterans’ ability to meet deadlines, he invoked a special provision allowing for an extension of the appeal period for good cause.

Jason meticulously prepared a request, presenting compelling evidence of how the pandemic had directly affected our client’s ability to meet the initial deadline. His argument highlighted not only the disruptions caused by COVID-19 but also the client’s persistent efforts to comply with VA requirements amidst these challenges.

In addition to addressing procedural hurdles, Jason Pearson engaged with appropriate medical professionals to obtain the necessary medical evidence to support the veteran’s claims. This included securing a private medical evaluation that conclusively demonstrated the client’s entitlement to a 100% rating for PTSD. This medical nexus opinion was crucial in establishing the service connection required for the claim.

In January 2024, the VA granted the veteran service connection for PTSD at the 70% rate, with an effective date of December 2023. While this was a step in the right direction, it did not fully reflect the severity of the client’s condition or acknowledge the initial filing date.

Attorney Jason Pearson immediately filed another appeal for a Higher-Level Review. He engaged directly with a Decision Review Officer, meticulously pointing out the evidence supporting a higher rating and an earlier effective date. Jason’s thorough presentation and advocacy were instrumental in highlighting the veteran’s long-standing entitlement.

In March 2024, the VA granted the veteran a 100% rating for PTSD, with an effective date retroactively set to August 2019, when the veteran’s claim was first initiated. This decision not only recognized the full extent of the client’s disability but also secured significant retroactive benefits.

This outcome ensures that our client receives the full spectrum of benefits he is entitled to, significantly improving his quality of life. The retroactive benefits dating back to August 2019 provide financial stability and peace of mind after years of uncertainty and hardship.

This case exemplifies the importance of staying abreast of policy changes and the impact of expert legal representation in the realm of veterans’ disability law. At Disability Law Group, we are committed to fighting for the rights of our clients, ensuring they receive the benefits they deserve, no matter how complex or prolonged the journey may be.

If you or a loved one are facing challenges with a VA disability claim, our experienced attorneys are here to help. Contact Disability Law Group to ensure your rights are protected and to secure the benefits you have earned through your service.