The United States Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (“Court”) has long held that “there is a presumption of regularity which holds that government officials are presumed to have properly discharged their official duties.” This means that the Court will assume that the VA has upheld its duties according to its Regulations. It’s up to the Veteran and his or her representative to prove that this didn’t happen.
In one recent Board of Veterans Appeals case, I was able to show that the VA failed to mail a notification of denial to our office. Because VA did not mail the notice, neither the Veteran nor I was able to timely file an appeal, and he had to file a new claim years after his original. To show that VA didn’t uphold their end of the bargain, we were able to show evidence that the letter mailed did not include our name or address. Another letter sent only two days later showed that it was copied to a Veterans Service Organization who did not represent the Veteran. These facts allowed the Veterans Law Judge to agree that the Veteran had shown that there were issues with the mailing of the notification.
Because we were able to show that VA could not use the presumption of regularity to confirm that we were properly notified of the denial, the Veteran was able to obtain 7 additional years of benefits based on his original filing date of his claim. This is a great win for the Veteran.
If you have any questions about VA benefits, the qualified Veterans’ Disability attorneys at Gardberg and Kemmerly want to help in any way possible. Gardberg and Kemmerly is committed to helping injured and disabled Veterans obtain the benefits they deserve. If you need help with a disability claim, call our office at 251-343-1111 or 1-800-332-1529 for a free consultation. Gardberg and Kemmerly is proud to serve Veterans across the country from our home office in Mobile, Alabama. We would love an opportunity to discuss your claim.