Loeb & Loeb LLP’s Veterans Assistance Project secured a significant victory on behalf of a disabled U.S. Army veteran who, with the pro bono assistance of attorney Jon Hollis and the firm’s Veterans Assistance Project team, was successful in obtaining a disability rating of 50 percent for post-traumatic stress disorder, securing a substantial increase in benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
Loeb & Loeb’s client has suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in connection with his military service from 1991-2001. Prior to Loeb’s representation in 2016, the client had repeatedly been denied service-connected disability benefits at the Regional Office and Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) levels.
Loeb successfully appealed the BVA’s decision to the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims in Washington, D.C. Through review of the record on appeal, the BVA decision, and discussions with the client, Loeb was able to determine that a medical diagnosis of PTSD by the VA Medical Center in Salt Lake City had never been included in the record by the Veteran’s prior claims representative or considered by the BVA in the decision on appeal.
Hollis presented this new and material evidence to the VA General Counsel’s office, which agreed to file a joint motion for remand of the case to BVA for reconsideration. The Court of Appeals granted the motion to remand on May 31, 2017. On remand, the BVA reversed its prior determination and awarded our client a 50% disability rating backdated to the date of his original complaint in 2012—totaling more than $28,000. The rating award provides an increase in monthly benefits to the Veteran of over $1,000/month.
As a veteran himself, Mr. Hollis stated that this result is particularly rewarding for our team. “The VA claims system is a complex legal process that can be very difficult to navigate. Pro bono legal assistance goes a long way for veterans in need and we are proud to be able to provide that” said Loeb & Loeb associate Jon Hollis.