Serving Those Who Served: Providing Government-Funded Attorneys to Veterans Seeking Disability Benefits from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs

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University of San Francisco Law Review

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U.S.F. L. Rev.


Much should be given to those from whom much is required. The U.S. government has an elevated duty to assist military veterans and this elevated duty should include providing injured veterans with government-funded attorneys when they file a claim seeking disability compensation benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Free legal representation for veterans is needed because of the numerous obstacles that veterans encounter at the VA including a de facto adversarial process, complex procedures, and improper denials and delays. Veterans represented by attorneys have better outcomes than unrepresented veterans. Providing free counsel to veterans is a necessary step in ensuring injured veterans are effectively cared for in their post-service years. Free counsel for veterans is a small price to pay when veterans have risked all in service to their country.

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