Individual Unemployability Denied

Individual Unemployability Denials

Top 10 Reasons Lawyers Should Help With Individual Unemployability Denials

Appealing Individual Unemployability Denials can be very complicated. We will outline the top 10 benefits you get by consulting an attorney for help.

If you have at least one service-connected disability  rated at least at 60%, OR, you have multiple service-connected disabilities, that have a total combined VA rating of 70%, with at least one disability rated at 40% or more, and you are unable to work in any substantial or meaningful way, you may be eligible for Total Disability due to Individual Unemployability (TDIU) benefits. These benefits could mean thousands of dollars a month in both cash compensation and free medical care.

Since so much is at stake, if you applied for benefits and were denied, it is a good idea to work with a San Diego VA disability attorney. Otherwise, there is a very good chance that the VA may deny your claim once again. Aside from that, there are some other very good reasons to partner with a lawyer for your appeal.

Free Consultation

Veterans literally have nothing to lose but their time, and possibly everything to gain. A personal consultation gives you the chance to evaluate the lawyer with your own eyes/ears. A good attorney can also quickly evaluate your case, lay out some preliminary strategies, and give you some good legal advice.

The VA Has Lawyers

Thousands of attorneys work for the Veterans Administration. Most of them are highly experienced in benefit appeals matters. All of them share a single mission. VA lawyers work to reduce or deny compensation to Veterans. Of course, they do so within the confines of the law. But the VA is their client, and not the disabled Veteran.

Negotiating Skills

Some Veterans do not need to go to a full hearing to obtain the benefits they deserve. Many times, attorneys negotiate favorable settlements with claims examiners, especially if the law and facts are on the Veteran’s side.

Solve Problems Now Instead of Later

Many times, an ounce of prevention truly is worth a pound of cure. In this context, if the appeal is unsuccessful, Veterans and their families could face significant hardships in future years, from both a medical and financial standpoint.

Peace of Mind

When you work with a dedicated lawyer, you know you are putting your best foot forward and giving the matter the full attention it deserves. It is very nice to know that a team of professionals is working on your case while you are enjoying time with friends and family.

Access to Evidence

Many TDIU appeals hinge on things like reports from vocational experts. An attorney is well-positioned to get these people on your side. So, an appeals case with a lawyer is much stronger than a case with no lawyer.

Procedural Expertise

The Code of Federal Regulations contains a long list of procedural requirements which must be followed, down to the smallest of details, such as the font size required in legal documents. Additionally, many VA offices have unwritten procedural rules. Not knowing what to do could cost you dearly.

Challenge Evidence

Only people with legal training and experience know how to properly challenge damaging evidence. Additionally, only people with this kind of background know what evidence to challenge in the first place.

Financially Savvy

Yes, a lawyer may take a percentage of your back pay as payment for services rendered. But 70 or 80% of something is a whole lot more than 100% of nothing. That could be the choice you face in VA disability appeals.

Complex Laws

Do you know of any attorneys who represent themselves in court, or do you know of any doctors who perform surgery on themselves? Unless you have a lawyer representing you, there is simply little chance that you could navigate the complex bureaucracy and obtain a successful outcome.

Rely on Experienced Attorneys

A lawyer significantly improves the odds of overall success in TDIU denial matters. For a free consultation with an experienced Veterans disability lawyer, contact Cameron Firm, PC at 800-861-7262 or fill out the contact box to your right. We are here to represent Veterans nationwide.

This article is for educational and marketing purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship.

TDIU Fact Sheet: An Unemployability Must-Read

Typically, a 100% disability rating is the goal in most VA benefit applications. An attorney can present your claim in a compelling way and lay out the kind of evidence that the VA likes to see. But for the most part, the Veterans Administration defines “disability” in objective terms. Therefore, people either meet the medical criteria or they do not. 

Total Disability due to Individual Unemployability (TDIU), however, is a much more subjective matter. The inquiry is much more individualized. In this context, “disability” is not just a medical term. Its definition also depends on legal, educational, vocational, and other factors.

So, in many cases, TDIU is a back door to full VA disability benefits. In addition to free medical care, benefits for a 100% disability start at $3106.04/mo and can be more with dependents and Special Monthly Compensation. When an administrative law judge awards these benefits after a hearing, they are usually retroactive to the date of application.

Eligibility Requirements

Veterans are eligible for TDIU benefits. Spouses and survivors may be eligible for other VA benefits, but not TDIU benefits. As the name implies, these benefits depend on the Veteran’s employability, or lack thereof, due to a service-related disability.

Note that all Veterans are eligible. They do not need to be combat Veterans. Additionally, they do not even need to be full-time Veterans. National Guard members and reservists who served any active tour of duty are “Veterans” for TDIU purposes.

The Veteran must have a threshold medical condition. That threshold medical condition could be one of the following:

  • A 60% disability rating from one condition, or
  • you have multiple service-connected disabilities, that have a total combined VA rating of 70%, with at least one disability rated at 40% or more

Additionally, the Veteran must be unable to obtain, and maintain, substantial gainful employment because of that disability. More on that below.

Evidence Requirements

To obtain TDIU benefits, the disabled Veteran must show the following:

  • Service-Connected Disability: The injury could either be a trauma injury, like a gunshot wound or a fall, or an occupational disease, like joint pain due to repetitive stress disorder. Deployment-coincidental injuries, like a car crash off the base during deployment, probably do not qualify.
  • Disability-Unemployability Connection: Non service-related disabilities or conditions, like a civilian injury or age, cannot contribute to the Veteran’s unemployability. For this reason, a VA disability attorney should be careful when using Social Security disability (SSDI) as evidence in a TDIU claim. The SSDI matter could help, or hurt, the TDIU claim.

There are also some informal evidentiary requirements that are not found in any book, but that experienced attorneys know well.

Medical evidence is often compelling in these cases. But sometimes, this evidence does not come from VA doctors. Attorneys often have claimants submit to independent medical evaluations. Many times, these examiners look at things much differently than VA doctors.

Lay testimony often effectively supplements these reports. For example, a doctor can relay the physical nature of a disability, but spouses and family members can tell Administrative Law Judges how that condition really affects the Veteran, on a day-to-day basis.

Vocational experts often tie things up. These professionals evaluate medical evidence in the light of the job market to form solid conclusions as to unemployability.

Veterans can have jobs yet still be unemployable. Perhaps the Veteran needs many accommodations at work. Or, perhaps the Veteran works for a family business that bends attendance and other rules.

Rely on Assertive Attorneys

Even moderately-disabled Veterans may be entitled to full disability benefits. For a free consultation with an experienced Veterans disability lawyer, contact the Cameron Firm, PC at 800-861-7262 or fill out the contact box to your right. We are here to represent Veterans nationwide.

This article is for educational and marketing purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship.