Veterans Disability Claims in Limbo as Appellate Court Reviews Ruling of VA Overhaul

According to an article in The Associated Press , in May of 2011, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals described the decisions made by the Department of Veterans Affairs’ (VA) in running its health care as being governed by “unchecked incompetence,” and ordered the VA to completely renovate their health care system; however, the court is now reconsidering its ruling, which could have incredible ramifications for veterans with disabilities.

The courts’ previous decision came at the hands of a 3-judge panel, when 2 veterans groups, Veterans for Common Sense and Veterans United for Truth, claimed the VA was ignoring serious health care issues, one of which was a dramatic increase in the number of veterans committing suicide. The claim also addressed the long delays in processing disability claims, which can take about 4 years.

In a 2-1 decision, the 3-judge panel found the VA wasn’t providing health care with the proper attention to detail and ordered the VA to develop a brand new approach to how they’ll administer mental health care to veterans, suicidal patients, and process denied benefit claims.

However, the court recently determined that decision to be invalid based on the limitations Congress has on VA decisions and ordered the re-hearing of the appeal. The date for the re-hearing has yet to be determined, which could have veterans waiting even longer to receive benefits and immediate health care.

If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability attorney from Veterans Help Group is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veterans disability rights firm today 1-855-855-8992.