900,000 Case Backlog for Veterans Raises Legal Questions

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The backlog of veteran claims filed with the VA has reached 900,000 and a claim can take 2 years to process. Attorney Gary Iscoe says veterans have other options.

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Veterans should be aware that it is possible to bring suit against the US government. If your health or life is on the line, that may be the best option.

Veterans wounded in military service are entitled to assistance from the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), but the backlog of claims reached 900,000 last week and many veterans face lengthy delays according to MSNBC. Attorney Gary Iscoe says the situation has created legal limbo for veterans and other legal options should be considered.

The VA not only provides assistance for those wounded in combat but also for soldiers injured in accidents and veterans suffering from psychological scars from their time in the service. Aid can come in the form of medical care, counseling and compensation. But with the growing backlog, the typical wait time to resolve a veteran's claim is two years – a delay that Iscoe says is unacceptable.

“Imagine needing surgery, medication or physical therapy and being told you'll get an answer in two years,” said Iscoe, whose legal practice focuses on assisting victims of accidents and injuries. “In that time your condition could become worse, it could be too late for treatment, or you might bankrupt yourself trying to pay for everything out of pocket.”

VA officials attribute the backlog not only to the sheer volume of claims following the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, but to reliance on a paper, rather than digital, processing system, which they hope to upgrade soon.

“I'm sure an old fashioned system makes it harder, but that's no excuse for what's happening to our veterans,” Iscoe said. “Veterans should be aware that it is possible to bring suit against the US government. If your health or life is on the line, that may be the best option.”

Iscoe suggests that veterans whose claims are denied should speak to a lawyer and explore all avenues.

About Gary Iscoe:
Miami car accident lawyer Gary T. Iscoe is a co-founder of Steinger, Iscoe and Greene law firm along with West Palm Beach car accident attorney Michael Steinger. With 20 years of experience handling accidents and injuries, Iscoe is a longtime advocate for veterans' rights. He started his legal career working for insurance companies and quickly decided he’d rather stand up for the victims. He can be contacted at:

Steinger, Iscoe and Greene
2333 Ponce De Leon Boulevard
Suite 1102
Coral Gables, Florida 33134
(305) 569-6000

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