Along with suffering from disabling physical medical conditions, vets can also find themselves struggling with mental health problems. One of the more common is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). But now a new bill that has passed the House could allow vets to obtain disability benefits stemming from a sexual assault that occurred while serving in the military.
Named for a Navy vet who was raped twice in 1987 by her supervisor, the Ruth Moore Act of 2013 would not only make it easier to obtain disability benefits for the psychological effects of a sexual assault, it’s hoped that standards will change regarding how these cases are handled. One of which is that official records won’t be required in order to show proof of an assault. In other words, testimony from the victim would be enough.
The bill also strives to ensure proper medical care and treatment will be given to survivors of sexual assault. Too often mental health conditions are not adequately addressed among veterans. This is becoming a serious issue in not only stopping assaults, but also dealing with the aftereffects.
The VA plans to implement similar procedures for those who have experienced sexual trauma as they do in processing disability claims for conditions such as PTSD. This includes taking into account evidence that isn’t as intrusive.
Sexual assault can lead to a variety of long-term mental health problems, including PTSD, anxiety and depression. Contact the Law Offices of Veterans Help Group to discuss the possibility of filing a claim for disability benefits if you or a loved one has been a victim of sexual assault or suffers from any other type of debilitating psychological condition stemming from military service.