Oftentimes only people with disabilities know the extend of their own suffering and difficulties, but there are times when letting the outside world know how you feel, as best as you can, is important.
In the case of applying for disability claims, there are some things you should know for giving yourself the best chance at success, as noted in this recent column by Ken Cruickshank, a retired Navy Master Chief Petty Officer and the Veterans Services Officer for Tulare County in California.
Among the most important points made by Cruickshank:
-You should apply for a service-connected disability benefit as soon as possible after your discharge date, which will help you prove it was service-connected
-The verification process is the first step, and you typically need three items of support: medical evidence of a current, chronic (continuous) disability; evidence of having suffered a disease, injury, or event while engaged in active service; and evidence linking these two items together.
Two Categories to Know
Your claim will fall under one of two categories: direct service connection or presumptive service connection.
Direct service connection meets all of the three conditions mentioned earlier, while presumptive disability refers to a health condition that could possibly have arisen during service.
For a more detailed explanation of what you should know before you apply, check out Cruickshank’s column by clicking here.