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Veteran receives $116,938 in back benefits after initial denial of 100 percent disability

Our client “John Doe,” was initially denied 100 percent disability for PTSD after his military service on the grounds that his mental health problems were not service-related.  Although on the surface John’s problems may have appeared to be unrelated to his service, Jeffrey Freedman Attorneys, PLLC, was able to prove they were.

“John had a disturbing story.  He was abused as a child and as a result, encountered a medical problem until he was in his teens,” said Jeffrey Freedman, managing attorney.  “When he was in the service, after being unable to complete a specified number of push-ups, which caused his unit to be punished with extra training, they decided to retaliate.

“They held what they call a ‘blanket party,’ where he was badly beaten.  After the beating his childhood medical problem returned and he eventually was given an early discharge.”

When John returned to civilian life, he developed problems with the law, getting into multiple fights and suffering head injuries from being hit with crowbars and baseball bats.  The Department of Veterans Affairs denied John’s PTSD claim because they believed it was a post-service condition.

“Under appeal, we showed that John’s trouble with the law was a symptom of impaired judgment resulting from the PTSD related to his time in service,” Freedman said. “We took his case to the Board of Veterans Appeals, and the Buffalo Regional Benefits Office granted John a rating of 100 percent.  We were able to obtain an award of $116,938 in retroactive pay.”

John says his experience with the law firm, particularly Eric Gang, the attorney who worked on his case, was completely positive.

“Eric and the people working with him were totally responsive to all of my calls and emails.  He’s an awesome person,” John said. “I would advise any Veteran who is having trouble getting disability that you absolutely have to have a lawyer.  The VA has people who are supposed to be trained to help, but 40 hours of training is not enough.”

“I’ve heard some horror stories, but because of Jeffrey Freedman’s office, I had a really good experience.”