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VA has proposed extending presumptive service connection to veterans who have served in Southwest Asia Theater of Operation on or after September 19, 2001 and who develop one of the following infectious diseases: 1. Brucellosis 2. Campylobacter jejuni 3. Coxiella burnetii (Q fever) 4. Malaria 5. Mycobacterium tuberculosis 6. Nontyphoid Salmonella 7. Shigella 8. Visceral […]

President Obama is scheduled to sign the Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010 today, May 5, 2010. The law addresses a number of issues related to veterans’ health care, including assistance to family caregivers of disabled veterans, expanded health care services for women veterans, greater outreach to rural veterans, and enhancements to […]

The attorneys of Goodman Allen Donnelly’s Veterans Benefit Group attended the annual judicial conference of the Veterans Court held March 4-5, 2010 in Washington, D.C. The conference draws attorneys from around the country who represent veterans, the VA, and those who work for the court itself, as well as the judges and other court staff, […]

Many veterans who served in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm are suffering from a range of physical disabilities, chronic ailments, and unexplained illnesses which may be due to an “undiagnosed illness.” Thousands of veterans who served in the Gulf War have come down with a pattern of symptoms that include rashes, joint and muscle […]

You can obtain information from the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee page at At that page, click on the tab that says “VA Benefits Claims Process.” That provides information on the process itself, as well as information about the Senators who serve on the Veterans Affairs Committee and how to contact them for assistance. The […]

In a previous blog posting I discussed evidence in veterans cases, including a feature unique to this system, the rule that if evidence is approximately balanced on any given point, the veteran claimant is supposed to be given the benefit of the doubt. In actual practice this favorable rule is not applied because VA determines […]

The National Organization of Veterans’ Advocates (NOVA) fall conference is scheduled to take place on November 5,6 and 7, 2009 in Charlotte, North Carolina. The conference includes a one day seminar for practitioners who are new to the area of veterans’ law on Thursday, November 5 and a two day general seminar for more advanced […]

In a previous blog posting I discussed evidence in general and the benefit-of-the-doubt rule. I also mentioned the three essential facts that must be proven in a service-connection claim: that there was an injury or first manifestation of disease in service, there is a current disability, and the disability is causally related to the event […]

Many veterans pursuing a claim for VA benefits have already been granted Social Security Benefits or are pursuing Social Security benefits for the same disability. A common belief among veterans is that VA should make the same conclusions and/or decision as the Social Security Administration (“SSA”). For instance, many veterans believe that because SSA found […]

The Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims and the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims Bar Association are jointly sponsoring a Moot Court competition to be held October 14 and 15, 2009, in connection with the Court’s 20th anniversary. Fourteen teams from the following universities will participate: Washington College of Law, American University Boston University […]