Can My Military Discharge Status Affect Disability Benefits? [Updated]

Can My Military Discharge Status Affect Disability Benefits? [Updated]

Discharge Status VA Disability Lawyers Kalamazoo, MI

Did you know that your VA benefits are affected by your discharge status from the military? As long as you don’t receive a dishonorable discharge, you are eligible to receive disability benefits through the Department of Veterans Affairs. Keep reading to learn how your military discharge status could affect your VA disability benefits.

If you have any questions after reading this article, then please feel free to contact us and we’ll get back to you with an answer as soon as possible.

What is Your Military Discharge Status?

Your military discharge status can affect whether you are eligible for disability benefits, VA health care, and other veterans services.

Military discharge status falls into 5 categories:

  • Honorable
  • General Under Honorable Conditions
  • Other Than Honorable
  • Bad Conduct
  • Dishonorable

In general, you are eligible for veteran disability if your discharge was honorable or general under honorable conditions. If you were given an Other Than Honorable (OTH) discharge, you may still be eligible for benefits depending on the circumstances of your case.

Since most people who receive an OTH discharge are denied benefits, we highly recommend hiring a disability lawyer to help you fight for your rights. It’s not unheard of for veterans to be given an OTH discharge even though their misconduct could be linked to post-traumatic stress disorder, military sexual trauma, or traumatic brain injury.

In this situation, the VA would review the events leading up to the incident that lead to your OTH discharge. To get to this point, however, you need a VA attorney that will fight aggressively for your rights.

The only time your military discharge status would completely destroy your chances of getting military disability is if you were dishonorably discharged. People who are dishonorably discharged have been convicted of a serious offense like murder or rape by a general court-martial.

How Were You Injured?

Keep in mind that how you were injured can affect your eligibility for disability benefits through the VA. For example, the VA will not compensate you for injuries sustained while you were in prison for a felony or AWOL (Absent Without Leave). You may also be denied disability benefits if you were injured because of your own misconduct.

Where Can You Get Legal Help for Your Case?

If you have been previously denied military benefits, we recommend you hire a disability attorney as soon as possible. A VA disability lawyer can help you get the benefits you need, especially if your service-connected disability interferes with your ability to keep gainful employment.

Laws that affect VA disability benefits can change over the years, which is why it’s important to hire a lawyer who is familiar with VA law. A VA attorney should also know how to use your medical records as evidence of your disability and the extent to which it affects your everyday life.

Depending on the circumstances surrounding your case, we may recommend possibly upgrading your military discharge. To do this, we must be able to prove to the board that your discharge reason or characterization was “inequitable” or “improper.” Doing this can be extremely difficult, which is why we recommend hiring one of our attorneys to help with your case.

Call the VA Disability Group

Our VA disability attorneys in Kalamazoo, MI are dedicated to helping you receive the compensation you deserve for service-connected conditions. To schedule your free case evaluation, call the VA Disability Group at (844) VET-LAWS.