The recent conflicts that the United States has participated in have been hard on the nation’s many soldiers. A good number of them have come home physically and mentally scarred. As an example, an article by writer Scott McFarlane discusses the increasing amount of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) cases that the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has to handle:
“The increase in PTSD cases has been sharp and severe in recent years. A federal report by the Congressional Research Service shows 118,829 new cases among troops from 2002 to 2013, amid the wars overseas.
Though the VA has added staff and funding to handle the increase in PTSD cases, a report in June by the National Academy of Sciences indicates the agency is struggling to do so. “(The Veterans Affairs) workforce has proven to be inadequate to provide the increasing number of veterans who have PTSD with adequate evidence-based treatments,” the report said.”
PTSD can seriously affect a person’s quality of life. Someone suffering from PTSD often is subject to flashbacks and nightmares to their traumatic event while having to deal with changes to their thought processes, like heightened feelings of fear, guilt, and shame along with paranoia. This is where a skilled veterans disability attorney from firms like Fight 4 Vets would be able to help.
An experienced disability benefits attorney would be able to make filing your PTSD claim easier. With the increase of PTSD cases, it can be easy to get lost in the shuffle. Having a lawyer representing you ensures that your claim will get the proper attention. Additionally, you would be able to avoid any mistakes that you could possibly make in the filing process. There are several things that someone wanting to make a PTSD claim needs to know.
First, claims will take time. Some claims have been known to take months to three years. Any mistake in filing would only add to that wait time. Second, PTSD sufferers are eligible for special fast track status. Your lawyer would be able to facilitate in ensuring that you receive it.
Third, the requirements for being qualified for PTSD benefits are a recent diagnosis of PTSD, a statement from the veteran regarding the event that caused it, proof that the event happened during their service, and finally, the medical opinion of a VA-approved psychologist. Your lawyer will be able to assure that you have all of the above and advise you on your application.
(Source: Surge in PTSD Diagnoses Amid Backlogs, Long Waits at Veterans’ Medical Centers, NBC Washington, June 28, 2014)