Attig Law Firm Successful in assisting Vietnam Veteran’s Surviving SpouseBy Chris Attig | Permalink
April 16th in Our Clients Wins, Survivors: DIC and Accrued Benefits, VA Benefits.
The Attig Law Firm secured substantial benefits for the surviving spouse of a Veteran client. The award of benefits to our client is the culmination of a twelve (12) year fight against the VA, and resulted in posthumous service connection of multiple conditions, and includes a substantial payment of past-due accrued benefits and Dependency Indemnity Compensation (DIC).
The Veteran’s surviving spouse is expected to receive at least $250,000 in past-due benefits, and going forward, will begin to receive a monthly annuity from the VA each month until remarriage or death.
In this case, the Veteran was a Brown Water Navy Veteran. He initially filed his claim around 2000, and was denied for several years by the VA Regional Office. His claim was remanded for correction of errors by the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA). While on remand, the VA put a stay on this case due to then-pending court appeals and rulings pertaining to Brown Water Navy Vet Agent Orange exposure claims.
Unfortunately, the Veteran passed away from his Agent Orange related illnesses in 2009. The Attig Law Firm began to work with the Veteran’s spouse on her Accrued Benefits and Dependency Indemnity Compensation claims (DIC) to continue to try to prove the Veteran’s contention that he was exposed to Agent Orange while in the inland waterways of Vietnam, and that his multiple conditions (certain type of cancer, diabetes, etc.) resulted from his Agent Orange exposure.
In 2010, the Veteran’s ship was added to the list of ships that were confirmed to have been exposed to Agent Orange in the inland waterways of Vietnam – ironically, in the very way and on the very missions that the Veteran recounted to the VA many, many times.
Even after this development was pointed out to the VA, the Agency continued to deny the claims for accrued benefits and DIC by the Veteran’s spouse for nearly 2 years. It was only after a face-to-face conference between attorney Chris Attig at the Attig Law Firm, and a DRO at the Regional Office that the VA changed its decision and granted all of the claims of the Veteran’s spouse.
(As an aside, I continue to be impressed with many of the DROs and the DRO process in this particular Regional Office; I would encourage all Veterans to take advantage of the DRO process in between the NOD and the BVA Appeal).
Though it would have been nice to see the VA make the right decision before the Veteran’s death, the Attig Law Firm is proud to have seen justice ultimately done for the Veteran’s surviving spouse.
The Attig Law Firm represents US Veterans in their disability benefits claims to the VA. The Attig Law Firm represents Veterans nationwide before the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA), or the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC).
For claims at the VA Regional Office level, the Attig Law Firm focuses its efforts on Veterans (and the Surviving Spouses of Veterans) in Texas, Arkansas, Colorado, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
If you are a Veteran (or a surviving spouse of a Veteran) and have a claim before the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA), or the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC), it is very important that you consider hiring an attorney with experience handling such claims. Even if you don’t hire the Attig Law Firm – find a reputable and competent attorney to help you with your Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC) Appeal.
No post on this website is meant to be legal advice and the posts on this website do not serve as a substitute for legal advice. Information is power, and we are providing this information to give you, the Veteran, some power. This information is not widely or easily accessible to Veterans. The information presented on this website is a general description of law and processes; each case is different, and there may be approaches listed here that are not accurate or applicable to your case. Likewise, there may be information that is applicable to your case that is not provided on this Veterans Disability Compensation Blog.
It is very important that the Attig Law Firm notes that each and every Veteran’s claim is different. Just because the Attig Law Firm was able to secure substantial past-due benefits for one Veteran or Veteran’s spouse does not mean or imply that we will be able to do so for you. In some cases, the Attig Law Firm may not be able to secure any financial compensation or past-due benefits due to the facts or law of your particular case.
It is best to consult with a lawyer familiar with VA Disability claims and benefits or a Veterans Service Organization to examine your particular case. If you would like to discuss your VA claim with a lawyer who handles VA Benefits and Disability Appeals, contact the Attig Law Firm, PLLC, for a free consultationwith a VA Benefits attorney.