Veterans' Benefits and Due Process

47 Pages Posted: 1 Oct 2010 Last revised: 22 Dec 2011

See all articles by Michael Serota

Michael Serota

Arizona State University, Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law; Academy for Justice

Michelle Singer

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: December 22, 2011

Abstract

America’s veterans have devoted a portion of their lives to protecting our polity. In return, the U.S. government has a moral and statutory obligation to care for them once they return from combat. Despite this responsibility, the Department of Veterans Affairs takes an average of four-and-a-half years to process many veterans’ disability benefits claims and appeals. These inordinate delays are not only morally unconscionable, but they also violate the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. In this Article, we analyze the VA’s claims adjudication process in light of the Supreme Court’s Mathews balancing test, and conclude that these administrative delays fail to provide veterans with procedural due process. To remedy these violations, we argue that Article III courts should issue an equitable injunction directing the VA to process veterans' claims within a fixed deadline.

Suggested Citation

Serota, Michael Eli and Singer, Michelle, Veterans' Benefits and Due Process (December 22, 2011). Nebraska Law Review, Vol. 90, No. 2, p. 388, 2011. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1684529

Michael Eli Serota (Contact Author)

Arizona State University, Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law ( email )

Box 877906
Tempe, AZ
United States

Academy for Justice ( email )

Michelle Singer

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

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