The Need for Better Evidence in VA Disability Compensation Cases and the Argument for More Medical-Legal Partnerships
South Carolina Law Review, Vol. 68, No. 2, 2016
Stetson University College of Law Research Paper No. 2020-3
23 Pages Posted: 1 Jul 2020 Last revised: 29 Oct 2021
Date Written: 2016
The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) disability compensation process is intended to recompense military veterans who suffer a physical or mental disability caused by their service in the United States military.'Anyone who has worked to help a veteran navigate the VA disability compensation system knows that the process can be daunting. A veteran is required to provide evidence to the VA that the disability he suffers is related to his military service. While the VA system does have procedures that are intended to ease the burden of providing this evidence, the overall implementation of the system, particularly when it applies to medical evidence, is not terribly efficient or effective.
Recognizing the importance of medical evidence in particular to establish a veteran's entitlement to disability compensation, this Article intends to 1) provide an overview of the veteran's need for medical evidence; 2) discuss some of the issues within the VA system that inhibit a veteran from reaping the statutory benefit Congress intended the VA system to provide; and 3) provide an alternate method of helping veterans to navigate the medical evidentiary requirements of this process. To explore these topics, a case study will be provided in order to examine the issues in more depth.
Keywords: veteran disability, compensation, disability benefits, veterans, department of veteran affairs, evidence, medical, legal, partnerships
JEL Classification: K3, K4
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation