Veterans Disability Lawyers in Pittsburgh, PA (2024)

When a person has become disabled as a result of serving their country, they deserve to be supported by the country they helped to protect. Disabled service members can pursue disability benefits through the Bureau of Veterans Affairs (VA).

If you need assistance applying for benefits, reach out to the Pittsburgh veterans disability lawyers at Morgan & Morgan. Our experienced team understands the veterans disability application process.

Unfortunately, many veterans benefits applications are denied. If you have been unable to secure the VA disability benefits that are rightfully yours, Pittsburgh veterans disability lawyers can help.

At Morgan & Morgan, our attorneys have helped veterans appeal their denied claims. We will use the facts from your case to build the most powerful claim possible on your behalf.

With our firm’s payment structure, you will not pay a single dime unless our attorneys recover the money that you are due. Veterans should not have to worry that their medical and living costs will go uncovered.

Fill out the easy-to-use contact form on the Morgan & Morgan website. Our friendly staff will schedule a no-cost legal consultation to discuss your case.

Understanding Veterans Disability Benefits

The veterans disability benefits program is overseen by the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. Not every service member is eligible for these benefits.

To understand if you are eligible for disability benefits through the VA, reach out to a skilled attorney. To qualify for VA disability benefits, applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant must have served in the military
  • The applicant must have a medical condition or injury
  • The injury or condition must have started during military service
  • The injury or condition was related to their military service

Proving these elements can be very difficult. A skilled legal professional can use the evidence in your case to show that your disability is related to your military service.

Successful applications include proof that the veteran’s disability was caused by their tour of duty. The team at Morgan & Morgan knows how to build powerful veterans disability applications for our clients.

What Kinds of Injuries Qualify for Disability Benefits?

Not every type of injury or illness will qualify applicants for VA benefits. Our Pittsburgh veterans disability lawyers can help you to understand if your condition makes you eligible for related benefits.

The skilled legal team at Morgan & Morgan has helped veterans with the following conditions to secure benefits:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Spinal injuries
  • Back damage
  • Gulf War syndrome
  • Leg, arm, and knee injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
  • Amputations
  • Malaria, dysentery, and other tropical illnesses
  • Shrapnel damage
  • Gunshots
  • Sickness from toxic chemicals
  • Cancers caused by exposure to harmful materials

These are only a few of the illnesses and injuries that can qualify veterans for disability benefit payments. This list is not exhaustive.

If you have another condition, consult with our Pittsburgh veterans disability lawyers to discuss financial recovery in your case. The firm at Morgan & Morgan has years of experience fighting for veterans with disabilities.

Depending on the type of medical condition that you have developed as a result of your military service, you may be owed compensation. Do not let a small application mistake keep you from getting the money that you deserve.

What Are VA Disability Ratings?

When the VA regional office (RO) is reviewing a benefits application, they assign a disability rating. The VA’s determination of the applicant’s level of disability will determine the kinds of benefits that they can receive.

Disability ratings can range from 10% to 100%. The higher the disability rating, the more benefits the veteran will receive.

However, applicants must be considered at least 10% disabled to qualify for VA benefit payments. Applicants’ number of dependents will also affect the disability rating that they are assigned.

VA disability benefits are not taxable. Veterans are eligible to receive these benefits in addition to their Social Security Disability benefits.

To secure maximum compensation in your case, . We can help you to anticipate your disability rating and fight for all of the money you are owed.

What Will Our Legal Specialists Do for You?

Even when you know that you need a legal representative, you may not know how an attorney can help. The VA disability benefits application process can be very complex.

Applying for benefits requires specific information and proving that your medical condition resulted from military service. Without a clear understanding of the process, many veterans find themselves facing unjust denials.

That is why it is so critical to have a legal professional oversee your initial application. When you hire one of the skilled attorneys at Morgan. & Morgan, we will:

  • Complete and file required documentation
  • Review relevant medical bills and records
  • Access military service records
  • Build a powerful case on your behalf
  • Negotiate with the VA representatives
  • File an appeal if necessary
  • Ensure that necessary deadlines are met

When a legal professional handles your claim, you can rest assured that you will have the best chance of getting the money that you deserve.

How Pittsburgh Veterans Disability Lawyers Can Help You File an Appeal

If your initial application for VA disability benefits has been rejected, you may not know how to proceed. The accomplished disability lawyers at Morgan & Morgan have decades of experience helping disabled veterans appeal denials.

Our legal team will represent your best interests throughout each step of the appeals process.

A veterans disability benefits appeal involves the following stages:

Local VA Office Review

The first step in the appeals process is a review by the local Pittsburgh VA office. Your legal representative will file a “Notice of Disagreement” after you receive your rejection letter.

It is important to contact an attorney quickly after you have received notice of rejection. Applicants must file a Notice of Disagreement within a year of their initial denial.

A skilled disability lawyer will draft and file the required documentation to notify the local VA office of your appeal. After they receive the Notice of Disagreement, the local office will draft a document called a “Statement of Case.”

The Statement of Case will include all of the information regarding your application and rejection. This document will contain details regarding the laws, evidence, statutes, and regulations that were used to make the initial decision.

After the Statement of Case has been drafted, a local decision review officer will reassess your application. Your lawyer can also request an informal personal hearing on your behalf.

At this meeting, your attorney can present the facts of your case. Pittsburgh veterans disability lawyers will examine your application to decide whether this informal hearing will be helpful.

Petition the Board of Veterans Appeals

If the initial Notice of Disagreement does not resolve the issue, your legal representative can file an additional petition through the Board of Veterans Appeals. This entitles you to a hearing in which a board member will review your case.

There are three distinct options for holding this type of appeal hearing:

  • A Washington, D.C. hearing at the Board of Veterans Appeals
  • A teleconference hearing with a board member in Washington, D.C.
  • A local office hearing, overseen by a board member

During this proceeding, your attorney will present the facts of your case. They may ask you certain questions that allow you to explain your situation.

This will help to prove that your illness or injury was the result of your tour of duty. Proving this causal relationship is often the most difficult part of a VA benefits appeal.

The team at Morgan & Morgan knows what it takes to build a persuasive legal argument in our clients’ favor. When we represent you, our attorneys will use their extensive knowledge and experience to prove that you are owed VA disability benefits.

Before the hearing, your lawyer will likely prepare you for the questions they will ask. This can help you to clearly explain why you deserve disability benefits.

If this secondary appeals step does not resolve the problem, you still have options.

Appeal the Decision Through the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims

Finally, your disability attorney can file a lawsuit through the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. This is the final option for overturning the initial denial.

Following a wrongful VA disability benefits denial, a skilled lawyer will file a Notice of Appeal through the court system. Your legal representative will prepare a strong oral argument to present to the judge in your appeals case.

Veterans should not have to worry that they will be denied the benefits that they earned by serving our country. To appeal a wrongful denial, reach out to the firm at Morgan & Morgan.

Veterans Disability Lawyers in Pittsburgh, PA (2024)


What is the most a VA disability lawyer can charge? ›

A VA disability can charge a maximum of 33.33% of your retroactive benefits for their services. Fees at or below 20% are presumed to be reasonable according to the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) section on payments to lawyers representing clients before the Board of Veterans' Appeals (BVA).

How do I get 100% VA disability? ›

To qualify for a 100 percent TDIU rating, the Veteran must have one disability rated at 60 percent or higher or two or more disabilities that have a combined rating of at least 70 percent, with one rated at 40 percent or higher.

Is it hard to get disability from the VA? ›

It's nearly impossible for you to win VA disability benefits unless you hire an experienced veterans disability lawyer.

How many veterans have a 100% disability rating? ›

A single 100% rating means that the condition you're experiencing is severe and totally disabling. A combined rating of 100% is not a total disability because a person may be able to maintain substantially gainful employment with a combined 100%. More than a million veterans receive benefits at the 100% rate.

What is the average VA disability amount? ›

20 percent disability rating: $327.99 per month. 30 percent disability rating: $508.05 per month. 40 percent disability rating: $731.86 per month. 50 percent disability rating: $1,041.82 per month.

What is the highest VA compensation? ›

A 100% VA Disability Rating is the highest combined rating a veteran can receive for VA Disability. It is also known as a Total Rating.

What is the most approved disability? ›

What Is the Most Approved Disability? Arthritis and other musculoskeletal system disabilities make up the most commonly approved conditions for social security disability benefits. This is because arthritis is so common. In the United States, over 58 million people suffer from arthritis.

What conditions automatically qualify you for VA disability? ›

What conditions are covered by these benefits?
  • Chronic (long-lasting) back pain resulting in a current diagnosed back disability.
  • Breathing problems resulting from a current lung condition or lung disease.
  • Severe hearing loss.
  • Scar tissue.
  • Loss of range of motion (problems moving your body)
  • Ulcers.
Apr 5, 2023

How far does VA disability back pay? ›

The VA typically only pays disability compensation going back to the date of discharge to veterans who apply for their VA disability benefits within one year of being discharged.

What is the easiest disability to claim for VA? ›

Tinnitus. Tinnitus, otherwise known as “Ringing-in-the-Ear-Syndrome” is by far the #1 easiest VA disability to claim. Tinnitus is when you experience ringing, hissing, buzzing, or other noises in one or both of your ears.

What not to say at C&P exam? ›

Don't Lie or Stretch the Truth. This is a big one. Don't ever lie or stretch the truth when it comes to your VA disability claim. At your C&P exam, you should think, look, act, and speak as you would on a normal day.

Can veterans fly for free? ›

Service members and their families can use Space-A flights – formally known as Military Airlift Command or MAC flights – to travel around the country and world at a reduced cost or for free.

Does the wife of a 100 disabled veteran get benefits? ›

As the spouse or dependent child of a Veteran or service member, you may qualify for certain benefits, like health care, life insurance, or money to help pay for school or training.

At what age does VA disability become permanent? ›

There is no set age of when your VA disability becomes permanent. The VA rater will determine “permanence” of a VA disability if it is reasonably certain, based upon medical evidence, that the level of impairment will continue for the rest of your life. Translation: Whether you're 35 or 75 years old it does not matter.

Is 70% PTSD a permanent VA disability? ›

The veteran's total disability due to PTSD is permanent with no likelihood of improvement. The 100 percent rating for PTSD is total, permanent, and static in nature.

How much will VA disability go up in 2023? ›

The adjustment for 2023 means a disabled veteran with a 10% VA rating can expect to see about $13.28 more each month, and a 100% disabled veteran with no dependents will receive $300 more per payment. Learn more online.

What does 80% VA disability get you? ›

According to the VA's 2022 disability compensation rates, if you have an 80% rating you will receive $1,778.43 per month if you have no dependents. However, with a 100% disability rating that number can increase to $3,332.06 per month.

What percentage is high blood pressure for VA disability? ›

A 20 percent rating is assigned for diastolic pressure that is predominantly 110 or more, or systolic pressure predominantly 200 or more. A 40 percent rating is assigned where diastolic pressure is predominantly 120 or more. A 60 percent rating is assigned where diastolic pressure is predominantly 130 or more.

What happens to my VA disability when I turn 65? ›

No, VA disability does not stop at age 65; nor does it stop at age 67. VA disability benefits are for the life of the disabled veteran! And in some instances, the veteran's VA benefits can pass to the surviving spouse. At age 65, a disabled veteran may also become eligible for VA pension benefits.

How much does the widow of a 100 disabled veteran receive? ›

If you're the surviving spouse of a Veteran, your monthly rate would start at $1,562.74. Then for each additional benefit you qualify for, you would add the amounts from the Added amounts table.

What not to say in a disability interview? ›

5 Things Not to Say in a Disability Interview
  • No one will hire me; I can't find work. ...
  • I am not under medical treatment for my disability. ...
  • I have a history of drug abuse or criminal activity. ...
  • I do household chores and go for walks. ...
  • My pain is severe and unbearable. ...
  • Legal Guidance When SSDI Benefits Are Denied.

What is the number 1 disability in the world? ›

Symptoms include stiffness, pain, swelling, and a lower range of motion. The CDC reports that arthritis is the most common cause of disability for U.S. adults. It often worsens as someone gets older. If someone has another disability, they also are more likely to have arthritis.

What is considered a serious disability? ›

(49) The term “severe disability” means a severe, chronic disability attributable to mental or physical impairment, or a combination of mental and physical impairments, that— (A) is likely to continue indefinitely; and (B) results in substantial functional limitation in 3 or more of the major life activities specified ...

What is the average VA rating for depression? ›

Overall, a 30 percent VA disability rating for depression and anxiety is assigned when a veteran presents with these symptoms in a mild manner, intermittently over time.

What is the average VA rating for PTSD? ›

What is the Average VA Disability Rating for PTSD? On average, most veterans who receive VA disability for their service-connected PTSD are rated at the 70 percent level.

What is a favorable finding with the VA disability? ›

For example, if a veteran is claiming service connection for post-traumatic stress disorder and VA recognizes their stressor, it should be noted as a favorable finding in the Rating Decision. Importantly, VA adjudicators are bound by favorable findings and can only rebut them with clear and unmistakable evidence.

Can you get VA disability without a diagnosis? ›

In order to win a claim for service connection for a disability, you must have a diagnosis of a current disability. Without a current diagnosis, the VA may deny your claim without even examining you.

What is the VA rating for back pain? ›

Many veterans with significant functional loss, pain, and difficulty working might initially only obtain a 10 or 20 percent rating. In fact, the average VA disability rating for back pain is only 10 percent.

What is the 8 year rule for VA disability? ›

The 8-year provision actually goes both ways. The veteran needs to have been totally disabled for at least 8 years before death and then the benefit will be granted to surviving spouses for the same 8 years.

What is the lump sum payout for VA disability? ›

Disability severance pay is a one- time lump sum payment. The amount equals 2 months of basic pay for each year of service which includes active service and inactive duty points, but the total service years cannot exceed 19 years.

Is VA disability back pay paid in a lump sum? ›

Back pay (also known as retroactive benefits) is the money you are owed from the time you filed your claim to the time it was granted. It's paid in a lump sum, all at once, after the benefits are granted. So the longer it took for the VA to award your claim, the larger your back pay will be.

How do I prove anxiety for VA disability? ›

Veterans can prove entitlement to service connection by pointing to service records from around the time they first noticed psychological symptoms while on active duty. Lay statements, counseling records, or records of job changes may also be useful.

What does 70% VA disability get you? ›

VA Compensation for 70% Disability Rating

As of December 1, 2021, veterans with a 70 percent VA disability rating receive $1,663.06 per month in VA compensation. This monetary benefit is tax free at both the federal and state levels.

Why does the VA deny so many claims? ›

If a Veteran does not submit enough proof about their disability in their VA claim , the VA will likely deny their claim. The VA has strict guidelines about what types of medical conditions qualify as disabilities and what level of compensation each veteran can receive based on the impact of the condition.

How do I ace the C&P exam? ›

  1. Prepare for Your C&P exam ahead of time.
  2. Be upfront with your concerns and day-to-day issues.
  3. Explain about “bad days” and how often they occur. ...
  4. Get a copy of the C&P results.
  5. Bring someone close to you to the appointment.
  6. Remember that you might have multiple visits.
Apr 20, 2023

What triggers a C&P exam? ›

#1 Q: What is a VA claim exam, also known as a Compensation and Pension (C&P) exam? If you've filed a claim with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for disability compensation or pension benefits, VA may ask you to go to an examination as part of the claim process.

What is the C&P exam for anxiety? ›

Compensation & Pension (C&P) Exams for Anxiety

Veterans will typically meet with a VA doctor and discuss their medical history, time in service, and current condition. The VA examiner will also ask about the veteran's current symptomatology to determine the severity of their anxiety disorder.

Do disabled veterans get priority boarding? ›

Veterans will be assigned a travel priority of Category 6, the lowest priority available, along with retirees and their dependents. The dependents of eligible disabled veterans may also accompany the veteran on flights in the U.S. or its territories.

Does Walmart give discounts to veterans? ›

Conclusion. Although there's no such thing as a Walmart military discount – or any other kind of specialized discount for that matter – there are still plenty of ways for shoppers to save money.

Can veterans use TSA? ›

TSA PreCheck for Retired Military And Veterans

Military retirees and veterans are not eligible for free TSA PreCheck. However, if you have any of the premium travel rewards cards listed above, you can get an TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fee waiver on most of the cards. That allows you to have free TSA PreCheck.

Do I get my husband's VA disability if he dies? ›

If you're the surviving spouse, child, or parent of a service member who died in the line of duty, or the survivor of a Veteran who died from a service-related injury or illness, you may be able to get a tax-free monetary benefit called VA Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (VA DIC).

How much will the VA pay my wife to be my caregiver? ›

Spouses, unfortunately, cannot be paid to provide care, as their income is also considered when calculating a veteran's pension amount. However, other relatives, such as adult children, nieces and nephews, and grandchildren, can be paid to be caregivers.

Can an ex wife get VA benefits after death? ›

Am I eligible for a VA Survivors Pension as a surviving spouse? You may be eligible for this benefit if you haven't remarried after the Veteran's death, and if the deceased Veteran didn't receive a dishonorable discharge and their service meets at least one of these requirements.

What is the 55 rule in the VA? ›

The 55-Year Rule states that veterans receiving VA disability benefits for service-connected conditions are exempt from periodic future examinations once they turn 55.

What is the 55 year old rule? ›

The rule of 55 is an IRS provision that allows workers who leave their job for any reason to start taking penalty-free distributions from their current employer's retirement plan once they've reached age 55.

What is the 55 rule for disability? ›

What is the VA's 55-year-old rule? The VA's 55-year-old rule states that disability compensation will not be awarded for disabilities that first appear in a veteran after they turn 55 years old, unless the disability is due to military service.

How much is a 90% VA disability worth? ›

The 2023 compensation rate (an 8.7% increase) for a 90% VA disability rating is $2,172.39.

How much is 80% disability from the VA? ›

The current monthly payment for an 80% VA disability rating is $1,933.15 for a single veteran without children or special monthly compensation (SMC). This amount is reviewed and adjusted each year. Veterans with spouses or dependent children or parents are eligible for additional compensation each month.

How successful are VA appeals? ›

According to the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA) Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2021 recorded a 32% acceptance rate for legacy decisions and 38.1% for AMA decisions. In addition to a low success rate, appeals often take several years to complete.

How many times can you appeal a VA disability claim? ›

There is no limit to how many times you can appeal a VA disability rating. And, since appeals can take a long time, it's best to do it right the first time. If a VA denies your initial claim, your higher-level review, and/or your supplemental claim, you still can appeal to the BVA, as long as it's done within a year.

What is the 55 year rule for VA disability? ›

The 55-Year Rule states that veterans receiving VA disability benefits for service-connected conditions are exempt from periodic future examinations once they turn 55.

What does 70% VA disability entitle you to? ›

Based on this criteria, veterans with a 70 percent VA disability rating are eligible for enrollment in Priority Group 1. Veterans in Priority Group 1 are eligible to receive all their health care services through VA with no copays. Some of these services include: Preventive care.

What disabilities can the VA not prove? ›

No, there aren't any VA disability claims that cannot be proven. In fact, all VA claims must be proven on an “at least as likely as not” basis. If you have no evidence (no proof), your VA claim will get denied.

What percentage of VA appeals win? ›

Without representation, veterans have a roughly one in four chance of receiving benefits on appeal: 2017 - 24.42% of appeals were approved with no representative. 2018 - 27.22% of appeals were approved with no representative. 2019 - 26.18% of appeals were approved with no representative.

What is the longest a VA claim can take? ›

It can take the VA anywhere from 90 to 120 days to decide on a claim at the regional office. For some claims, it takes even longer. How long it takes for the VA to consider a claim depends on the workload in the regional office, the complexity of your disabilities, and the completeness of your initial claim.

How far back does the VA give back pay? ›

Furthermore, VA will only grant benefits back to the date of discharge for service members who apply for benefits within a year of their military discharge. As mentioned above, the effective date is most often the same date that VA received the veteran's claim.

How long does it take for a judge to review a VA appeal? ›

The Veterans Benefits Administration usually takes 12 to 18 months to review appeals and decide whether to grant some or all of the appeal. When you request a review from a Veterans Law Judge at the Board of Veterans' Appeals, it could take 5 to 7 years for you to get a decision.

Are most VA claims denied? ›

The process of filing for veteran disability benefits is long and complicated. It can take months or even years to get approved, and most claims are denied. That's why it's essential to understand why the VA denies so many claims and what you can do to improve your chances of getting approved.


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