When veterans receive a rating decision, they have three different ways to appeal it. A veteran must file a notice of disagreement within one year of the decision. An attorney can help you determine which appeal option to choose and provide support at a Board hearing. An attorney could also ensure that all filing deadlines are met.
If the VA makes a decision you do not agree with, you have one year from the decision date to file a Notice of Disagreement and request a personal hearing. You can also submit a supplemental claim within this time frame if you have new and relevant evidence not considered during your unfavourable rating decision. If you choose a higher-level review, a senior reviewer will take a fresh look at your case. You can submit new and relevant evidence with this appeal option, but the higher-level review lane aims to adjudicate these claims within 125 days. You can appeal their decision by hiring a lawyer specialising in veterans’ benefits to help ensure your case is thoroughly and effectively represented. A skilled veteran’s lawyer will examine your claim’s facts and advise which appeal option to select. The Appeals Modernization Act of 2017 allows you to choose either the direct review lane, evidence submission lane or the hearing lane. Each route has strategic advantages and disadvantages, and your attorney can advise which one will best achieve your objectives.
An attorney with the right knowledge can use private medical records and expert opinions to support legal arguments. They can also show the VA how they misinterpreted or overlooked certain evidence. One example is the way a combined rating is calculated. A veteran may have two service-connected disabilities rated at 50% each, for instance, but the combined rating is listed as 80% because of how the system works. In addition, a lawyer can help a veteran decide what type of appeal to choose under the new Appeals Modernization Act (AMA) system. There are three different review options: the higher-level review lane, the direct review lane and the hearing lane. Each has its strategic advantages and disadvantages. For instance, a senior reviewer will look at the original decision under a legal standard called de novo review in the higher-level review lane. However, the reviewer won’t consider new evidence. A lawyer can advise veterans on the best option to achieve their strategic objectives.
If you receive a Rating Decision that is less than what you believe you deserve, an attorney can help. Securing a higher rating could mean more than just future benefit payments, but compensation for past benefits you missed out on. The VA appeals process has three ways to request a decision review. In general, former service members must file a Notice of Disagreement (NOD) one year from their Rating Decision. An attorney can help you decide which option to choose and prepare all required forms for your case. They can also provide private medical records, expert opinions and other resources to support your claim. They can also represent you at any Board hearings. The veterans’ rights law firm has the experience to understand what is needed for your case and to navigate the complex process successfully. They have assisted many veterans through this process and will not make promises they cannot keep.
A lawyer with experience will have helped hundreds and possibly thousands of veterans through the same process. This experience will give them a nuanced understanding of the different types of appeals and what it takes to win each one. Whether you have a legacy claim or are using the new Appeals Modernization Act (AMA) process, you have three options for filing an appeal. Your attorney can help you choose the best option and guide you.
You have one year from the date of your Ratings Decision to file a Notice of Disagreement with your regional office. You can request a personal hearing with a Decision Review Officer from your regional office or appeal to the Board of Veterans Appeals. The BVA is a quasi-judicial body where you can present evidence in a hearing before a judge. Your attorney will handle the BVA hearing and represent you in court if necessary.