» Veterans Attorney Says DoD Should Consider Mental Anguish In Soldier Misconduct Cases

Veterans Attorney Says DoD Should Consider Mental Anguish In Soldier Misconduct Cases

Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) November 29, 2010 - Post-traumatic Stress Disorder is a widely known psychological disorder thanks largely in part to the aftermath of the Vietnam War, where thousands of soldiers returned to the United States unable to cope with everyday life. Despite increased understanding, however, there have been recent cases where the military has not been sensitive to solders’ mental trauma.

Legal Help for Veterans is a law firm helping veterans get the benefits they deserve.

After fighting in the bloody Battle of Fallujah in Iraq and serving a second tour of duty in Afghanistan, James Karp, a U.S. Marine, found that he was drinking often in an attempt to forget about the mental anguish he suffered overseas.

“It was like, you come back from war, you get drunk. You're having issues? Have a beer,” Karp told the Austin American Statesman newspaper in Austin, Texas.

Karp went to a clinic where he was diagnosed with PTSD. However, when he was drunk at a party in November of 2006, he decided to use cocaine. After a random test uncovered his cocaine use shortly after the party, Karp was court-martialed and kicked out of the Marines with an “other than honorable” discharge, thus losing his benefits.

“The story is not that unusual – a service member suffering from psychological problems starts to self medicate, gets kicked out of the service and loses access to Veterans Affairs benefits,” said James G. Fausone, a veterans disability lawyer with Legal Help For Veterans, PLLC. “Veterans advocates see cynical forces at play in the use of administrative discharges for reasons including misconduct, personality disorder and adjustment disorder.”

It is estimated that the Department of Defense will save between $5 billion and $20 billion in lifetime health care and benefits to the estimated 10,000 to 20,000 veterans with similar discharges, which some say should be reconsidered due to the soldiers’ underlying psychological conditions. When soldiers are discharged for reasons stemming from their mental anguish, they lose their health care benefits, and often, the only way they can get these mental problems treated.

“Department of Defense officials have denied they use improper discharges as a cost-saving measure and say discharge policies continue to evolve as they learn more about PTSD and traumatic brain injury,” Fausone said. “If you like a conspiracy, this has all the makings needed.”

To learn more or to contact a Veterans disability attorney or Veterans lawyer call 1.800.693.4800 or visit http://www.legalhelpforveterans.com.

Legal Help for Veterans, PLLC
41700 West Six Mile Road, Suite 101
Northville, MI 48168
Toll Free Phone: 800.693.4800

  • Camp Lejeune veterans to get 2 billion dollars in disability benefits for tainted water
    Veterans affected by contaminated drinking water at North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune could soon get some relief after decades of fighting for their right to compensation. An official document published via the Federal Register on January 12 announced the Obama administration will provide disability benefits to exposed veterans who served at the Marine Corps base. Around […]
  • Florida airport shooting puts spotlight on veterans mental health care
    The recent shooting at Fort Lauderdale airport has drawn nationwide attention to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and exposed the gaps that exist in mental health care for veterans. The attacker charged with the shooting was an Iraq veteran who may have suffered from PTSD. Esteban Santiago is the sole suspect of the January 6 shooting […]
  • New evidence at Michigan base could boost veterans’ water contamination claims
    Samples collected from hydrants could help veterans who were stationed at a former Air Force base in Oscoda, Michigan, get the long-awaited attention they are seeking from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for illnesses caused by poisoned drinking water. Veterans and their families were exposed to perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) in their tap water at […]

See other news sources publishing this article. BETA | Tags: , , , , , , ,



Get headlines from Law Firm Newswire sent right to your inbox.

* indicates required