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Court Wins

CCK Successfully Appeals Rating for Service Connected PTSD

Maura Black

May 18, 2017

Updated: November 20, 2023

CCK Successfully Appeals Rating for Service Connected PTSD

Board Denies Veteran a Rating Above 50% for Service Connected PTSD

CCK successfully appealed a Board of Veterans’ Appeals decision that denied the veteran a rating above 50 percent for his service connected PTSD. CCK argued that the Board erred in failing to discuss numerous important pieces of evidence. The Board overlooked the Veteran’s multiple problems at work, including being suspicious, not working well with others, and making threats that were significant enough to frighten coworkers (actions that resulted in him being required to complete anger management, having his position changed to avoid interacting with others, and being hospitalized for 15 days). Additionally, the Board failed to discuss evidence of problems within his marriage, including frequent arguments and a history of separating. The Board also ignored evidence of a strained relationships with his children and other family members and only briefly mentioned the Veteran’s problems socially outside the family setting, including multiple physical altercations and threatening a neighbor with a gun.

Court Agrees with CCK’s Argument that the Board Failed to Fully Discuss the Evidence and Remands the Case

The Court agreed with CCK’s arguments. The Court found that “[b]ased on the Board’s failure to fully discuss the evidence, the Court finds that the Board’s reasons or bases are inadequate and that remand is required.” As a result, the Court vacated the Board decision and remanded the case for further proceedings.

Read the Court’s decision.

About the Author

Bio photo of Maura Black

Maura is a managing attorney at Chisholm Chisholm & Kilpatrick LTD in Providence, Rhode Island, where she specializes in representing disabled veterans and their families before the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, the Board of Veterans’ Appeals, and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Throughout her career, she has represented hundreds of veterans and their dependents in their pursuit of VA benefits. She has presented and organized numerous continuing legal education events that have focused on service-connected VA benefits and appeals, VA’s appeals reform legislation, and petitions for writs of mandamus at the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. In the spring of 2022, Maura served as a panelist during an Appeals Modernization Act presentation at the Fifteenth Judicial Conference of the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims.

See more about Maura