Filing a disability claim through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) can be complicated. A simple mistake may cause the VA to reject a claim. For those with mesothelioma, this can be terrifying since the cancer is very aggressive. Veterans can appeal unfavorable decisions from the VA and receive disability benefits.
What Are VA Appeals?
An appeal gives veterans the opportunity to overturn a decision from the VA if their disability claim was delayed or denied.
Veterans with mesothelioma can apply for VA benefits to access medical treatments and disability compensation. Since 1 out of every 3 mesothelioma patients served in the U.S. military — and may have been exposed to asbestos during their service — these benefits are more than deserved.
However, the VA may not accept all disability claims. Filing for VA benefits is a very confusing process, and without help from a VA-accredited claims agent or lawyer, veterans can make mistakes that cause their claim to be rejected — even if they actually were exposed to asbestos and developed mesothelioma while they served.
This makes the VA appeals process a useful tool, as it gives veterans a second chance to get the benefits they deserve.
Veterans can file an appeal by working with a VA-accredited attorney. These attorneys know how to build a strong case and collect evidence on the veteran’s behalf — which may make the difference in appealing an unfavorable decision.
Call (877) 450-8973 to see if you can file an appeal and pursue mesothelioma VA benefits now.
Importance of VA Appeals
VA appeals are extremely important for veterans with mesothelioma since the cancer is highly aggressive.
Though mesothelioma takes 20-50 years to develop after exposure to asbestos fibers, veterans with mesothelioma may only live a handful of years — or even months — depending on their diagnosis.
Most patients are not diagnosed until the cancer has spread, making the chances of long-term survival slim. And, if a veteran’s VA disability claim is denied, they could lose out on crucial VA Health Care services at a time when they need it most.
Because of this, the appeals process can be a blessing to veterans with mesothelioma.
The VA appeals process allows veterans to:
- Add new evidence to support their claims
- Correct mistakes they made
- Discuss their case (and any disputes) with those reviewing the appeal
- See if the VA made a mistake that caused the claim to be denied
Veterans with mesothelioma normally receive a 100% disability rating — a cash value of $3,332.06 a month, or more depending on their circumstances — but only if the VA accepts their claim.
Since many veterans may not be able to work after a mesothelioma diagnosis, these payouts may be their only way to cover their medical treatments and related expenses. This is why it is so important to appeal a claim if it’s denied.
Who Can Submit a VA Disability Appeal?
Veterans can submit a VA disability appeal. If a veteran passes away, their loved ones (such as their spouse) may be able to receive benefits and file appeals if their benefits claim is denied.