As a disabled veteran, did you know that you have the right to fight back if the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) denies your disability claim at the final level of your appeal? You can take your case to the United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC) in Washington, D.C.
What is the CAVC?
The CAVC is not part of the VA. It is a national court created to give disabled veterans the opportunity to seek an unbiased review of their case after they have been denied at the Board of Veterans Appeals. This is the place to go to if you want to present your reasons for why you deserve the disability compensation that has been denied to you.
Likewise, if you take your case to the CAVC, you can expect that the VA will defend their decision to deny you the disability benefits you believe you deserve.
It is strongly advised that if you choose to take your case to the CAVC, you should get legal representation to help you. Why? Because a VA disability attorney, or non-attorney representative, has experience in appealing claims at the CAVA, and know how to formulate the best possible arguments to help you win.
Who Should Legally Represent You?
You will want to make sure that you get a legal representative who is not only savvy about veterans disability and VA law, but is also someone who really cares about veterans and understands what they are going through.. The person you choose can be either an attorney or a non-attorney who has been admitted to the bar and has an attorney present while arguing your case at the CAVC.
You should know that there is no cost for representation services at the CAVC. This is because of the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA), which requires that the federal government take responsibility for paying your legal fees.
Once you find your legal representative, it will be his or her task to develop a convincing argument in your defense. You can expect that the VA attorneys will be doing the same.
When to File For A Review
You have 120 days after the Board of Veterans Appeals has made their final decision about your case to file a Notice of Appeal with the CAVC.
What Could Happen at Court
After arguments from both sides have been heard, the CAVC will decide your appeal. The CAVC could reverse the Board of Veterans Appeals’ decision, in which case you’ll get your benefits. Or they could request that your claim be sent back to the Board of Veterans Appeals for reconsideration.
The important thing to know is you don’t have to settle for a VA disability claim decision that you do not agree with. As a disabled veteran you have rights.
Appealing your claim at the Court of Veterans Appeals is recourse available to you. The CAVC has been in existence since 1988 for the purpose of ensuring that disabled veterans,are getting their fair share from the VA.