If you are a veteran suffering from a disability, you have enough problems to wrestle with already. It can get much worse, however, if you find yourself struggling to get access to veteran disability benefits. If you are not careful of certain obstacles, you could find your application delayed, or even rejected. Here are five of the most common obstacles veterans face when applying for disability benefits:
- Lack of medical evidence
- One of the first hurdles any veteran faces when seeking disability benefits is simply proving they have a disability. This can be a complicated process, as it requires there to be documented medical evidence of a disability, either from a Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) doctor, or from another physician. If you have a disability, but have never gotten it examined by a doctor, you may be fighting an uphill battle to get benefits.
- Failure to diagnose your condition at the time
- Even if you have been appropriately diagnosed by a doctor, not every disability related to military service appears right away. Some issues do not become apparent for months, or even years, afterwards, making it harder to tie your disability to your service. If you cannot prove your disability is related to your service, you may not be able to access veterans’ disability benefits.
- Suffering from pre-existing conditions
- If you have a pre-existing condition from before your service, it may be harder to prove that any issues you are currently suffering from are related to your service. While you can get benefits if your condition was worsened by your service, this can be difficult to prove. The more medical evidence you have of how your service affected your condition, the better your chances are of overcoming this hurdle.
- Proving your eligibility for VA benefits
- Any veteran in good standing is potentially eligible for disability benefits. However, if your good standing has been brought into question, you might be denied access to those benefits. In that case, you may need legal representation to help you clear your name so you can access the benefits you deserve.
- Paperwork errors
- Finally, perhaps the most common reason for being rejected for benefits is simple paperwork errors. Leaving out crucial information or documentation is the single biggest reason people’s applications get rejected, which means being thorough is key to ensuring you get your benefits. That is why you should make sure you have legal assistance in preparing your application, which minimizes the risk of these easily avoidable errors.
The attorneys of Sullivan & Kehoe place a special focus on assisting disabled veterans. Our veterans’ disability lawyers are still available for remote consultation on your legal issues. Call our office at (800) 395-7830 to schedule a consultation in our New York City, Garden City, Kings Park, Riverhead, or White Plains office, or visit our contact page.