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Justice for Warriors Newsletter
May 2020 
Dear Friends, 

We hope you and your loved ones are faring well during this challenging time. At NVLSP, we are grateful that we can continue our work to serve those who have served us. We recognize many of our veterans may already be facing financial hardships because they have been wrongfully denied benefits. These veterans are now also facing the unprecedented challenges of dealing with COVID-19, exacerbating the economic and health burdens they and their families must cope with. This pandemic has deepened our resolve at NVLSP to fight for our veterans and pursue justice for them.
In addition to delivering on our core programs, NVLSP has produced a  COVID-19 Economic Assistance For Veterans and a Fact Sheet on CARES Act Stimulus Program.

Thank you for your continued support and dedication to our work.   
Stay safe and be well. 

Barton F. Stichman
Executive Director

NVLSP and Yale Veterans Clinic Issue White Paper That Confirms Veterans Who Served in Guam from 1962-1975 Were Likely Exposed to Dioxin Herbicide Agents Including Agent Orange

According to a new white paper released today by the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) and Veterans Legal Services Clinic at Yale Law School (VLSC), veterans who served in Guam from 1962 to 1975 satisfy the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) legal standard for exposure to Agent Orange and other dioxin-containing herbicides. The conclusion is based on an exhaustive review conducted over nearly two years of government, private, archival, and oral history evidence of herbicide use in Guam during the Vietnam era. Read More

NVLSP and Veteran Warriors File Comments on VA's Proposed Changes to Caregivers Program

The National Veterans Legal Services Program and Veteran Warriors partnered to file comments on the VA's proposed changes to the Caregiver Program. The organizations' 33-page comments offer a detailed review of the proposed changes and underscore Congress's original intent with the Caregiver Program. Read the document here 

Federal Court Orders VA to Send Corrective Notices to 1 Million Veterans Whom VA Misinformed About Their Entitlement to VA Reimbursement of Emergency Medical Expenses
Veterans Court Also Rejects VA Plea to Delay Reimbursement Payments To 72,000 Veterans in NVLSP's Class Action in Wolfe v. Wilkie

In the matter of Wolfe v. Wilkie, on April 6, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC) granted the Motion for Enforcement of the Court's September 9, 2019 decision filed by the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP). This ordered required the VA on April 13th to begin mailing more than 1 million corrective notices to veterans who had applied for reimbursement, but whom VA had misinformed about what emergency medical expenses the VA can reimburse.  VA had admitted earlier in the Wolfe case that these inaccurate notices could have deterred the veterans from pursuing their reimbursement claims.  The Court also rejected VA's argument that it should not send any of the corrective notices until the appeal VA contemplates filing is finally decided by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.  Read More  

NVLSP Reinstated Request for Injunction After Pentagon Reneges On Agreement To Put All DRB and Correction Board Decisions Back Online For Public View
The National Veterans Legal Services Program's (NVLSP) filed a renewed motion for preliminary injunction in response to the Pentagon's reneging on its agreement to return all the past decisions of the Discharge Review Boards (DRBs) and Boards for Correction of Military Records (BCMRs) (collectively, the Boards) that the Pentagon removed 10 months ago from its public reading room. The Defendants in this renewed motion include the Secretaries of the military departments, the Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense and the Secretary of Defense. Read More

The latest developments in the Wolfe v. Wilkie case made the headlines in print and broadcast news. NVLSP Executive Director Bart Stichman was interviewed by Tom Temin on Federal News Network and by A.J. Lagoe of KARE 11 about the recent developments. Leo Shane's article on the court order in the Military Times was carried in several other publications and online resources.
NVLSP also earned national coverage of its appeal against the Pentagon to gain access to critical military discharge records. Associated Press Reporter Ben Finley's story was picked up in US News & World Report , MSN.com , Stars & Stripes and The Washington Times .

NVLSP continues its dedication to veteran law education by growing its webinar schedule in an effort to educate more veterans advocates on strategies for securing disability benefits for their clients. In May 2020, experienced NVLSP attorneys will lead discussions on the following topic:
NVLSP also has a comprehensive library of over 20 previously recorded webinars that are available at your convenience. 

NVLSP's Training & Publications program also offers: in-person training, the Online Basic Training Course, the Veterans Benefits Manual, and the VA Benefit Identifier App.

We hope this newsletter inspires you to become more active with NVLSP.  If you want to help NVLSP do more for our veterans, here are a few suggestions.
  1. You can follow us on Twitter, connect with us on LinkedIn, and like us on Facebook.
  2. Help us promote our free App for veterans.
  3. Tell a friend about NVLSP.
We look forward to connecting with you again soon!