Veterans Law Legal Update: Beraud v. McDonald, 766 F.3d 1402 (Fed. Cir. 2014)

Gregory M. Rada Disability Compensation, Legal Update

  In September 2014, the Federal Circuit decided Beraud v. McDonald, carving out an exception to the general rule that a “subsequent final adjudication of a claim which is identical to a pending claim that has not been finally adjudicated terminates the pending status of the earlier claim.” Now, under Beraud, when a veteran submits evidence to the VA within the appeal period of …

Service Connection for Tinnitus Without Accompanying Hearing Loss?

Gregory M. Rada Disability Compensation

It’s very common for veterans to suffer from tinnitus without accompanying hearing loss. Unfortunately, when a veteran submits a claim for service connection for tinnitus without hearing loss, VA examiners will often render a negative nexus opinion that goes something like this: “Although the veteran served in a high hazardous noise MOS, the veteran has bilaterally normal hearing indicating intact cochlear function. Therefore, the …

VA Releases Final Rule on Standardized Claims and Appeals Forms

Gregory M. Rada Disability Compensation

The VA amended its regulations today introducing a uniform disability claims form that VA says will allow it to better service veterans. The new rule goes into effect beginning March 25, 2014, and includes three major changes: Requirement that all VA benefits claims (pension, compensation, dependency and indemnity compensation, and monetary burial benefits) be filed on VA’s standardized claims form Requirement …

Shock Waves Cause As Much Damage As Impact Head Injuries

Gregory M. Rada Disability Compensation

A recent study has confirmed that the concussive blast wave from an explosion can be equally as damaging as an impact injury to the head when it comes to traumatic brain injuries. The study set out to determine whether there was any difference in the level of symptoms suffered by service members “with blast-related vs. non-blast-related concussive TBI” and concluded there was …