Can assist veterans if we are not located near them or near their local VA Regional Office?

Yes. In dealing with the VA, all evidence and argument is submitted in written form. Once we accept a case, the Regional Office sends us an entire copy of the claims file, so we are able to make a case in support of benefits by using the claims file and VA case law. If after reviewing the claims file, we feel as though there is not enough medical evidence to support a claim for benefits, we will advance the cost of an independent medical evaluation in close proximity to the veteran’s location. Additionally, our law office can help with other legal needs in the many legal jurisdictions that A.D. Winters is admitted.

Allow us to help! Just call 877.7WINTERS or 877.794.6837

In a claim for service-connected aggravation of a pre-existing disability, must the veteran show an increase in disability during service to trigger the presumption of aggravation?

No. Not according to a published General Counsel Opinion has now made clear that, under 38 C.F.R. § 3.306(b), a claimant is not required to show that the disease or injury in question increased in severity during service to trigger the presumption of aggravation, thus requiring the VA to rebut the presumption by clear and unmistakable evidence. See VAOPGCPREC 3-2003.

Allow us to help! Just call 877.7WINTERS or 877.794.6837

What is the TDIU versus extra-schedular ratings?

Generally, the VA refers to a claim as a TDIU claim when two conditions are met: 1) a veteran has one service-connected disability with a 60% or more disability rating, or has two or more service-connected disabilities with a combined rating of 70% or more, and 2) there is medical evidence of unemployability. If the veteran satisfies these two conditions, then he will be entitled to a 100% disability rating, even though he does not satisfy that 100% disability rating under the schedule. See 38 C.F.R. §4.16(a)

An extra-schedular rating, on the other hand, applies to veterans who are unemployable due to their service-connected disability(ies), but whose disability(ies) does not meet the percentage requirements under §4.16(a). See 38 C.F.R. §4.16(b.)

A veteran can be rated 100% disabled under both a TDIU or extra-schedular theory. See Bowling v. Principi, 15 Vet.App. 1, 5-9 (2001).

Allow us to help! Just call 877.7WINTERS or 877.794.6837

How do you determine the effective date of a disability award?

You look at two factors. First, you must consider the date the last claim was received by the regional office, and second, the date the disability in question first manifested or became symptomatic. The later of the two dates should be the effective date of the service-connected disability award. See 38 U.S.C. § 5110(a); McGrath v. Gober, 14 Vet.App. 28 (2000).

Why should I hire a VA certified disability attorney?

  • Have You Been Denied?: We are excited about helping with your have VA benefits appeals. Most of our clients have one thing in common – they were all denied by the VA. A denial is not the end of your claim. Don’t let the complicated VA disability benefits appeal process scare you – appealing is difficult but having qualified legal professionals handle your claim can help ease your mind.
  • Have You Tried VSO’s?: A majority of clients have used free VSO to initiate claims while this is normal remember you can start anew by filing an appeal. Oftentimes, our law firm clean up messes left by free veterans organizations. Unfortunately, there are a lot of unqualified people out there “helping”disabled veterans with their claims.

Are You Frustrated?: First, take a deep breath – being frustrated with the VA disability benefits process is normal. The VA is a huge bureaucracy, but having a VA certified disability attorney who knows how to navigate the system can help your claim. After you hire a VA certified disability attorney, you no longer have to talk to the VA about your claim. Instead, you will now call your law firm. We will take care of the VA for you.


  • Do You Have A Complicated Claim?: If you have a simple claim, using a free VSO might be a good idea. A VSO will be able to handle something simple like a tinnitus claim. However, if you are filing a more difficult claim, like Individual Unemployability Benefits, we highly suggest you get an experienced VA certified disability attorney. The more complicated your claim is, the better evidence you are going to need to be successful.