Court Rejects Board’s Finding That Veteran Was Not Credible
The Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims recently vacated a Board decision denying a veteran service connection for depression. The Veteran reported suffering from depression in service and self-medicating with alcohol. The Board found these reports not credible because there were no service treatment records documenting depression or alcoholism. But the Court noted that the Board overlooked the Veteran’s separation examination, which noted slight alcoholism. While a veteran cannot receive VA benefits for direct service connection for alcoholism, these benefits can be awarded for secondary service connection for alcoholism. Here the Court found that the Board erred when it failed to discuss this favorable medical record, and remanded the Veteran’s claim.