» Veterans Law

Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) October 12, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Defense announced the expansion of its policy to permit more veterans with other-than-honorable discharges to apply for a review and request a potential upgrade to their status. In a recent memorandum, the Pentagon directed the Army Review Boards Agency to consider whether a veteran had an experience or condition that could qualify them to seek an upgrade to their bad paper discharge. The agency was told to provide “liberal consideration” to veterans whose discharge was connected to a mental health condition, sexual harassment or sexual assault. The […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) October 5, 2017 – The illegal street drug MDMA, popularly known as Ecstasy to partygoers, has shown promise as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted the drug a “breakthrough therapy designation” following years of research into its medical uses. The designation could fast-track MDMA’s approval as a prescription medication. The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) has sponsored research into the drug for around 30 years. Their recent clinical trials involved veterans and other participants taking MDMA doses and being guided by clinicians through intensive psychotherapy. […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 27, 2017 – Veterans who identify as transgender are angered and confused by the recent announcement by President Trump on Twitter that transgender Americans will be banned from serving in the military. President Trump supported his statement by claiming that the military could not be encumbered with the exorbitant medical expenses and disruption that transgenders in the military would create. Some active service members now think they may have placed themselves at risk when they revealed their transgender identity during the Obama administration, which permitted them to do so. There have been many transgender […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 22, 2017 – Veterans in St. John’s County, Florida have reason to celebrate due to recent legislation that extends their benefits from the GI bill. The 20,000 veterans who reside in the county will no longer have to use their education benefits within the 15 years following their exit from military service. “The new law, which is long overdue, will serve to improve the quality of life for many veterans and their families,” says Tampa, Florida veterans lawyer, David W. Magann. This benefit will only apply to veterans who enlist after January 1, 2018, […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 15, 2017 – The recent revelation by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., that he was diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, an aggressive form of brain cancer that is fatal, has caused some individuals to ask the VA to conduct a study of the potential link between exposure to Agent Orange and the illness. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) has come under additional pressure to expand eligibility requirements for compensation. Tampa, Florida veterans lawyer, David W. Magann, states “Pending the outcome of the new study that is under way concerning the link between glioblastoma and […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) September 14, 2017 – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) fired the longtime director of its main veterans medical center in Washington, D.C. Brian Hawkins was dismissed due to growing concerns about his leadership of the VA facility. The VA released a statement saying “he failed to provide effective leadership.” Hawkins was reassigned to a different post within the agency in April pending further review. Retired Army Col. Lawrence Connell has served as the hospital’s acting director since then. “The disciplinary action taken against Brian Hawkins reiterates the fact that the VA is now more […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) September 8, 2017 – Law firms want to know how and why a client makes first contact, and Bigger Law Firm magazine has the answers. In the feature article, Brendan Conley explains the science behind how people, including clients, make decisions. He draws a series of distinctions between the perfectly rational, but fictional, beings that economists and others imagine people to be, and reactive, often illogical, real-world human beings. Understanding how decisions are made can help a firm make sound marketing decisions. As Dipal Parmar explains in the Virtual Impression update, a good website […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) September 8, 2017 – A U.S. Navy veteran has been considered 90 percent disabled and unemployable by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). However, when he submitted an application for back pay, he was denied receipt of such payments by the social security administrative law judge (ALJ), who also cancelled his benefits. Tampa, Florida social security disability lawyer, David W. Magann states “Due to a change in the rules of the Social Security Administration (SSA), an ALJ will no longer grant special consideration to a disability claim decision made by the VA.” “This means it […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) September 7, 2017 – The Senate unanimously voted to approve a bill that would provide funding for the almost depleted Veterans Choice Program. The legislation provides a temporary fix to what has been a looming problem for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The $2.1 billion emergency spending package would prevent the interruption of health care for countless veterans. The program would have enough money to sustain it for six more months. “The Veterans Choice Program was established to reduce appointment wait times for veterans seeking quality medical care,” commented Jim Fausone, a Michigan veterans […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) August 14, 2017 – House lawmakers are looking to expand the GI Bill to improve education benefits for veterans. The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs in July advanced a new bipartisan bill, which marks the largest expansion of college aid for veterans in a decade. The legislation combines 18 different House bills and around 30 provisions submitted by Democrats and Republicans. One of its key improvements involves eliminating the current 15-year time limit for veterans to use their education benefits upon returning from service. It would also boost aid for National Guard and Reserve members, […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) August 7, 2017 – President Trump recently signed legislation that provides the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) with more power to remove employees for misconduct. It also enhances whistleblower protections. Trump said that the Department of Veterans Affairs Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act ensures “the scandal we suffered so recently never, ever happens again.” He was referring to the secret waiting lists discovered in 2014 that led to veterans dying while awaiting appointments at VA hospitals nationwide. “The new VA Accountability Act is a positive step for a department seeking to change its culture and […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) July 31, 2017 – Veterans face the prospect of being deprived of several of their health benefits as lawmakers seek to make drastic reductions to Medicaid in the proposed health care plan. According to a recent report issued by Families USA and VoteVets, approximately 1.7 million veterans across the nation, and nearly 120,000 in Florida, depend on Medicaid for their health care. A co-author of the report, Andrea Callow, who is the associate director of Medicaid Initiatives, said that veterans frequently confront complicated medical problems arising from their service, such as mental health illnesses and […]


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Las Vegas, NV (Law Firm Newswire) July 28, 2017 – In 2007, U.S. Army Specialist Jorge G. Sandoval Jr. was charged with murder by the very government he had sworn to serve. While deployed to the most dangerous area in Iraq known as the “Triangle of Death,” Sandoval, an airborne infantryman and elite sniper, was instructed to “take the shot” and kill an enemy insurgent wearing civilian clothes. Two weeks later, Army Criminal Investigation Command descended upon Sandoval’s unit and began interrogating the soldiers, trying to link Sandoval and others to war crimes, including murder. Captain Craig W. Drummond was […]


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Tampa, FL (Law Firm Newswire) July 21, 2017 – According to the Inspector General for the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, the suicide hotline for veterans requires some improvements. A report issued by the department this year stated that several veterans who phoned the hotline were connected to overflow call centers, and some were put in a queue for a maximum of 30 minutes while they waited for someone to answer their call. In 2007, the Veterans Crisis Line was created. It answers approximately 500,000 calls annually. The objective was to have no more than 10 percent of calls sent to […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) July 12, 2017 – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is adopting a commercial system used by the Pentagon to revamp the way it stores veterans’ electronic health records. The agency chose to forgo competitive bidding and decided on a private company to build the new technology. VA Secretary David Shulkin cited a public interest exception to federal contracting rules. He pointed out that the Pentagon experienced a delay of 26 months when it engaged in competitive bidding on its system. The secretary said veterans should not have to wait for a better, improved medical […]


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San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) July 7, 2017 – Bigger Law Firm Magazine provides a map of marketing and technology strategies in the latest issue, available today. In the feature story, Brendan Conley dives into “client journey mapping,” a big-picture approach to marketing that will help firms develop a cohesive, end-to-end strategy. The client journey technique puts the client’s evolving relationship with the firm at the forefront. The firm’s marketing needs change at each successive stage of this relationship, from discovery and consideration to decision and engagement, and finally to lasting loyalty. BLF shines its Product Spotlight on Lawcus, […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) July 5, 2017 – Authorities are investigating multiple cases of suspected opioid and drug theft by doctors, nurses or pharmacists at Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) hospitals. Employees at VA health facilities are suspected of stealing prescription drugs for personal use or sale. The Associated Press (AP) reported that VA medical centers have more than double the rate of missing drugs than the private sector. The VA inspector general’s office launched 36 new criminal investigations into prescription drug theft or unauthorized use at VA facilities between October 1 and May 19. The department currently has […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) June 15, 2017 – Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Secretary David Shulkin announced that the agency is considering a plan to close more than 1,100 facilities across the country as it moves toward allowing a larger number of veterans to access private sector health care. Shulkin told a House hearing that the department has identified 735 underused facilities. There are also 430 empty buildings, most of which were constructed around 90 years ago. The VA secretary told lawmakers that closing them would save the government around $25 million annually. However, he did not specify which […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) June 8, 2017 – President Trump signed an executive order to create a new Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). The office will be dedicated to shielding whistleblowers from retaliation and holding VA employees accountable for misconduct. Trump promised that the office will protect employees who report problems at the VA. He emphasized that, “we will never, ever tolerate substandard care for our great veterans.” Along with investigating reports of retaliation against whistleblowing employees, the new office will look into allegations of misconduct at the VA. It will […]


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Northville, MI (Law Firm Newswire) May 10, 2017 – The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) responded to a recent critical internal watchdog report by insisting it has made significant progress in fixing long-running problems with its suicide hotline. However, lawmakers and veterans groups say the improvements are not enough. The VA inspector general released a scathing audit in March that revealed a large number of rollover calls, inadequate data to determine call quality and other issues at the troubled Veterans Crisis Line. As recently as November, around one-third of calls went to voicemail or backup call centers operated by outside […]


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