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3rd Annual Vetty Awards To Salute America’s Heroes

The Academy of United States Veterans and Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes, along with CNN’s Jake Tapper will host the 2018 Veteran Awards “Vettys” on January 20 in Washington DC. The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) will be honored. [more]

Released 1/9/18 | Tags:

Bart Stichman: New app helps veterans discern eligibility for benefits

The Veterans Affairs Department offers a long list of benefits to former military members. But it’s not always easy for an individual veteran to figure out which service he or she may be eligible for. Now, there’s an app for that from the National Veterans Legal Services Program. Bart Stichman, the program’s executive director, spoke to Eric White on Federal Drive with Tom Temin about the new application. [more]

Released 1/8/18 | Tags: Veteran's Benefits

The Costs of Aggregating Administrative Claims

Class actions, in which named parties bring claims on behalf of many different people, are the most famous kind of aggregate proceeding. But courts have found numerous other ways of aggregating disputes, including bankruptcy and trustee suits, statistical sampling, and parens patriae actions by states on behalf of certain citizens. What all these processes share is that a single party or proceeding binds numerous parties to the outcome of the proceeding, even if some of those parties never actually participate in the proceeding. The idea is simple: Consolidating many similar claims in a single proceeding would help agencies process claims more quickly, efficiently, and fairly. But aggregation presents unique challenges in the administrative context with respect to agencies that dole out entitlements. Such agencies, of course, have limited resources. An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) with the authority to aggregate entitlement claims is thereby armed with the power to prioritize how those resources will be spent—whether in line with the agency’s own priorities or not. NVLSP executive director Bart Stichman is quoted. [more]

Released 1/1/18 | Tags: Staff

Veterans Claiming Disability Pay Face Wall of Denials and Delays

The veterans benefits system started more than a century ago, and in the time since — as new wars stacked on entitlements and new abuses stacked on reforms — it has grown into an unruly tower of regulations. It pays out more than $78 billion each year to nearly five million beneficiaries. But there are also more than 470,000 veterans who have been denied benefits and have appealed. When they do, they encounter an antiquated system where processing cases takes years — and sometimes even decades. NVLSP executive director Bart Stichman is interviewed. [more]

Released 11/13/17 | Tags: Veteran's Benefits

Feds Can’t Flee Vietnam Veterans’ Agent-Orange Benefits Suit

A U.S. Court of Federal Claims judge on Wednesday refused to grant the federal government’s request to toss a suit brought by veterans and their families who allege they have not been fully paid benefits they are entitled to stemming from the military’s use of the toxic chemical Agent Orange during the Vietnam War. [more]

Released 10/26/17 | Tags:

MN veteran’s legal battle wins billions for other vets

A Minnesota veteran’s precedent-setting legal case is forcing the Department of Veterans Affairs to change course after years of denying payment of veterans' emergency medical bills. NVLSP helped represent the veteran. A court ruled a VA policy violated federal law. As a result, the VA estimates it may be on the hook for billions of dollars in previously denied claims. [more]

Released 10/17/17 | Tags: Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, Veteran's Benefits

Federal government improperly restricting public access to court records via excessive fees

On September 5th, the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and a coalition of 17 media organizations submitted a friend-of-the-court brief to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in the case of National Veterans Legal Services Program v. United States of America. The brief argues that the law requires the judicial system to limit the fees it charges people to access its Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) system to the cost of disseminating the information requested. Currently, many members of the media face prohibitive costs when trying to obtain court records to inform the public about what is happening in the judicial system. [more]

Released 9/18/17 | Tags: Class Actions

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