Navy Seaman Katherine Glover experienced sexual trauma during her service at a NATO base in Italy in 1985. It took her 17 years of suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) before she finally told a representative at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) about her experience. The VA rep helped get Glover into treatment and began the process of applying for veterans disability benefits.
However, due to her lack of evidence of the service connection to her condition, caused repeated denials. It wasn’t until her case was examined using revised guidelines for sexual trauma that she finally won the retroactive and ongoing disability benefits she was entitled to. She will receive retroactive benefits of $150,000 dating back to her initial disability application in 2006 and then the monthly stipend, of $2,800, thereafter.
Any disabled veteran may run into a similar situation when they don’t have the ability to provide the medical and official evidence connecting their disabling condition to their military service. In Glover’s case it was due to lack of an incident report at the time of the assault, but veterans may also lack proof that they served in an area exposed to toxic materials, or that they served in an area at all.
The veterans disability benefit claims process isn’t always as simple as showing medical evidence and your discharge papers. There are many factors taken into consideration when making a disability determination, which is why it’s best to work with an experienced veteran’s disability attorney from the start to avoid unnecessary delays in your claim approval.
If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability attorney from LaVan & Neidenberg is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veteran’s disability rights firm today – 1-888-234-5758.