Amherst, NH asked in Military Law for North Carolina

Q: Can you presume that a 5-17 discharge for a medical reason would also trigger VA disability rating?

Being discharged for "adjustment disorder" and concerned that although its honorable, they will not document it properly and I'll not be entitled to treatment if I need it, or any other VA benefits, like GI Bill or a disability rating. Should I hire an attorney to make sure that paperwork is completed?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Elizabeth Fowler Lunn
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  • Military Law Lawyer
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Licensed in North Carolina

A: An attorney cannot assist you with your discharge paperwork. If your discharge is ultimately honorable (not all 5-17 discharges are honorable) then your should be taken through the process of getting a VA claim started.

You should make sure that any medical conditions are noted on your exit exam. Try to obtain any treatment records before you leave the service (if you received any treatment while in service) so that you will not have to wait to get them later. A medical discharge usually triggers the VA process. You should speak to the person/unit that is processing your discharge to make sure that an application for VA benefits takes place. If your claim for VA benefits is ultimately denied then an attorney can help you with an appeal.

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