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Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017 Blog Series: Part 1: Options for Appealing a Rating Decision

On Sunday, May 21st, the House Committee on Veterans Affairs (HVAC) passed H.R. 2288, the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017. If passed into law it will mean many changes for the VA and for our veterans. One notable revision is the options in which veterans may appeal their rating decision.

The bill states there would be three options to appeal a rating decision. Any selection/choice must be made within 1 year of the original decision.

  1. The veteran may file a request for a higher-level review under section 5104(B).
    1. The veteran can request a review at this level by a different regional office than the current one assigned and the VA has to abide by that request.
      1. For example, you live in Kansas and are denied. You might have reason to believe that North Carolina or Oregon or another state has a more favorable rate of grants or completes cases quicker. You could request your appeal to be processed in another state. This would be exceptionally helpful for veterans in Florida, California, and Ohio as those three states have the worst timeframes for processing appeals.
  2. The veteran may file a supplemental claim under section 5108.
  3. The veteran may file a Notice of Disagreement under section 7105.

Over the next few weeks Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban will be releasing a series of blogs explaining the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization Act of 2017 and how it will affect veterans. Our Veterans Disability Benefits Attorneys believe it is important to keep veterans informed of their rights. If you need assistance appealing your Veterans Disability Benefits Claim, contact us online or give us a call 866-866-8387.

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    Well, A little puzzle, that given 60% disability rate, after some retirement , funds reduced to 39%, rate 60% still.

    If you need assistance with your VA Claim, please contact us at 866-866-8387, we would be happy to speak with you.

    I have read this Bill and from what I understand it to be is another way for the V A to deny a Veterans Claim. They have taken away parts that should have given the Vet a better chance to win their case. The V A does not have to inform the Vet of actions taken. They will remove the “Duty to assist” part. Additional evidence is on a time limit before it can be entered. The V A can remand the claim to get other opinions to disprove the case. The Law will allow the V A to change the awards date which could cheat the Vet out of years of back pay due from the original filing date. The part of it that allows the Vet to file a Notice of Disagreement requires the Vet to know the laws and requirements of the V A when processing claims so the Vet can, because required to, identify errors the V A made when processing that claim. I don’t see any advantage to the Veteran if this Bill becomes law. It will allow the V A to legally deny claims they have processed incorrectly. This Law will be BAD FOR VETERANS.

  • Thank to Mr. Spencer I was able to get my VA disability claim re-reviewed and given another chance to receive disability. By far he is one of the most professional lawyers I have ever dealt with. So Veterans if you are looking for help with your VA disability claim I would suggest that you hire Macari, Russotto, Spencer, & Balaban. Thanks again for everything.

    — Alfred Daye

  • As a disabled veteran trying to navigate the complexities of the Veterans Administrations regulations, I turned to the law firm of Marcari, Russotto, Spencer and Balaban. They helped me understand what I needed to do and prepared and presented to the VA an excellent presentation of my case. I recommend them for your legal needs.

    — Harry Johnson

  • I was very satisfied with the excellent and professional manner the law firm handled my claim. I highly recommend any veteran who needs help with his or her claim to use Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban P.C. Special thanks to Mr Spencer for being very professional and courteous during the appeal process. Again Thanks to the entire firm for a job well done!

    — Luther Henderson

  • My husband & I highly recommend this law form to any veteran trying to navigate the endless red tape of the VA. We turned to Marcari, Russotto, Spencer & Balaban to handle my husband's appeal and could not have been happier. We enjoyed open and consistent communication regarding our case. Any questions we had were answered immediately.

    — Michele DeZayas

  • Amanda Medina-Morales was our point of contact and she kept us up to date on the progress of our case. It was a pleasure and relief knowing that someone truly competent and professional was handling this and fighting for us.

    — Michele DeZayas

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