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NVLSP Press Releases

NVLSP Offers New Resources for Combat-Related Special Compensation

To help veterans gain a better understanding of their eligibility for Combat-Related Special Compensation and how we may be able veterans apply for this benefit, the National Veterans Legal Services Program is making the materiais from a recent virtual Know Your Rights: Combat-Related Special Compensation … [more]

Released 9/21/20 | Tags:

NVLSP Supports Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s and Rep. Raul Ruiz’s Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters

The National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) attended a press conference in support of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s (D-NY)and Rep. Raul Ruiz’s M.D. (D-CA) new legislation, the “Presumptive Benefits for War Fighters Exposed to Burn Pits and Other Toxins Act of 2020.” The bill, an amendment to Title 38, U.S.C., would provide a presumption of service connection for certain diseases associated with exposure to toxins, and other purposes. This legislation would ease the burden of proof for veterans seeking VA benefits for medical conditions resulting from their exposure to burn pits and other toxic emissions during their military service. [more]

Released 9/15/20 | Tags: Agent Orange, Congressional Legislation, Veteran's Benefits

Swords to Plowshares & NVLSP Comments on VA Character of Discharge Proposed Rule

WASHINGTON – Today, Swords to Plowshares and the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) called on Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to do away with its unlawful eligibility rules that fail to honor and protect those who were unjustly separated from the military with a less-than-honorable discharge. In a joint response to VA’s Proposed Rule to Update and Clarify Regulatory Bars to Benefits on Character of Discharge (COD) determinations, the organizations detail their demand for a VA benefits system that – unlike the current system – would account for racial discrimination, combat deployment, military sexual trauma, and arbitrary distinctions like branch and era of service – all factors which significantly increase a service member’s chance of receiving a less-than-honorable discharge. VA’s proposed regulations are in direct response to Swords and NVLSP’s petition for rulemaking submitted in December 2015. Nearly five years later, the VA responded with its new proposed regulation which, if implemented, would continue to exclude veterans most in need of treatment and support. The comments were filed with the pro bono assistance of Latham & Watkins LLP and the Veterans Legal Clinic at the Legal Services Center of Harvard Law School. [more]

Released 9/8/20 | Tags: Discharge Upgrades

NVLSP Wins Class Action Challenging Government’s Excessive Fees for Public Access to PACER

On August 6, 2020, the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) prevailed before a unanimous panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit in a class action brought on behalf of the thousands of organizations and individuals who have been overcharged by the government since 2010 to gain access to all federal court case dockets using the PACER electronic database. In the case styled National Veterans Legal Services Program v. United States,the Court of Appeals agreed with NVLSP that the PACER fees were excessive and that they were being wrongly used to fund government programs not authorized by Congress. The Court also indicated that these fees represented an impediment to the First Amendment right of access to courts. [more]

Released 8/10/20 | Tags: Class Actions

NVLSP Makes VA Disability Benefits Questionnaires (DBQs) Available to Public

VA Disability Benefits Questionnaires (DBQs) VA Disability Benefits Questionnaires (DBQs) are standardized forms used by medical experts who conduct examinations for VA disability benefits purposes. DBQs address a range of medical conditions and include check-the-box inquiries designed to elicit … [more]

Released 8/10/20 | Tags:

NVLSP Pursues Retroactive Benefits for Blue Water Vietnam Veterans

More than $4.6 billion in retroactive compensation has been paid to Vietnam veterans who set foot on land but nothing to Blue Water Vietnam Veteran

In an effort to secure retroactive benefits for thousands of so-called Blue Water Vietnam veterans, on July 10, 2020, the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) filed a motion for enforcement of the 29-Year Old Class Action Consent Decree in Nehmer v. United States Veterans Administration in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The motion was filed with the pro bono assistance of Paul Hastings LLP. [more]

Released 7/13/20 | Tags: Agent Orange, Class Actions, Congressional Legislation, Veteran's Benefits

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