Veterans Affairs

June 7, 2024

Understanding Disabled Veteran Leave: Eligibility & Benefits

Are you a VBA-qualified disabled veteran with a veteran disability rating of 30% or higher? If so, it’s crucial to understand your rights and the benefits available to you. One such benefit is the Disabled Veteran Leave, which can provide much-needed support during recovery. If you have never heard about this option, you’ve come to the right place. This guide will help you navigate these benefits and more. What is Disabled Veteran Leave? Disabled Veteran Leave provides up to 104 hours of paid leave for federal employees with a service-connected disability rating of 30% or higher. * Note that the Disabled Veteran Leave is a separate benefit from the normal sick leave and doesn’t come in exchange for the accrual of sick time. Disabled Veteran Leave Eligibility Eligibility Criteria — To Whom Does the Disabled Veteran Leave apply? Your effective hiring date is on or after November 5, 2016 You […]
January 11, 2023

DISCHARGE UPGRADES: A Path to Honor and Earned Benefits

Other than an Honorable Discharge According to the most recent U.S. Census statistics, approximately 16.5 million veterans live in the United States. When service members leave the armed forces, they receive a formal discharge of duties and a D.D. Form 214 that spells out the character of their service. Statistics regarding this process vary widely from year to year based on a variety of factors, including the active or peacetime climate of the Department of Defense at the time.   500,000 veterans are currently living with an “other than honorable discharge.”, according to The Department of Veteran Affairs (V.A.). Current statistics found that 16% of veterans discharged from service received a discharge characterization that did not meet the honorable threshold. Approximately 1% of discharges result in the most severe form of separation, a punitive discharge, labeled as a “Dishonorable” or “Bad Conduct” discharge.  Why “Bad Paper Matters” Bad Paper is […]
August 3, 2022

Exposure to Contaminated Water at Camp Lejeune

Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 Congress recently passed a bill that clears the way for many veterans and their families who were stationed at the Camp Lejeune military base in North Carolina to seek compensation for medical conditions likely caused by contaminated water. The Camp Lejeune Justice Act of 2022 eliminates a legal barrier prohibiting these victims from suing the government for benefits related to the illnesses related to the toxic water exposures at Camp Lejeune. The Act is under the umbrella of the Honoring our Promise to Address Comprehensive Toxics (PACT) Act of 2022. Toxins in water likely to blame for multiple health problems Exposure to contaminated water at Camp Lejeune during a 30-year period is blamed for various health conditions, including several types of cancer, fertility problems, Parkinson’s disease, and more. Victims were exposed to the contaminated water by drinking it, cooking with it, cleaning with it, […]
December 29, 2020

Traumatic Brain Injury: Get the Facts

While traumatic brain injuries may make the national news headlines when it involves beloved NFL players, what’s often lost in these news articles is the reality that traumatic brain injuries are shockingly common and have many different causes. These injuries can leave the injured and their loved ones wondering what they can do if they’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury in their own lives. Today, we’re going to take a few minutes to walk you through TBI, its possible effects, and steps you may be able to take to help your injured family member or loved one in their fight to protect their rights.
December 15, 2020

Agent Orange: Know the Facts

At Bluestein Attorneys, we’ve worked with military servicemembers of all stripes — those just back from a new deployment, vets who served during the first Gulf War, Korean war veterans, Vietnam veterans… the list goes on. While many Vietnam veterans have heard about the herbicide Agent Orange and its use during their time serving overseas, did you know Korean war vets may also have been exposed? The long-term effects of Agent Orange have only recently been acknowledged and truly understood, and it’s important for military veterans who are dealing with hard-to-pinpoint physical issues to know whether or not they may have been exposed during their time in service.
October 26, 2020

Toxic Firefighting Foam & the U.S. Military: What We Know

If you, or someone you love, has developed cancer after being exposed to toxic firefighting foam, please call us right away.     In the 1960s, researchers for the U.S. Navy began testing a new form of firefighting foam that would extinguish flames quite rapidly. Just a decade later, in the 1970s, this type of foam was being used widely, across most military bases in the United States, as well as at a slew of airports, fire departments, and oil refineries. This foam, commonly known as Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) or perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) was designed to put out burning jet fuel.
April 30, 2020

Radiation Exposure During Military Service

Whether you suspect you may have been exposed to radiation during your time serving in the United States military, or you know for sure you were subject to at least some radiation exposure, it can be hard to know where to begin when it comes to filing for disability benefits. We’ve put together some basic information to help you when it comes to filing your claim.
December 17, 2019

Have You Seen the VA Disability Appeals Changes in 2019?

 Veterans Affairs has recently announced the largest single change to VA Disability claims in decades, discontinuing its Rapid Appeals Modernization Program (or RAMP), in order to fully implement the Veterans Appeals Improvement and Modernization (VAIM) Act, which took effect on February 19, 2019. What does the change to the VA Disability appeals process mean for disabled veterans currently waiting for a decision or considering filing an appeal? We’ve broken down the details to give you a closer look.