Error in denial of service connection for hypertension
Board of Veterans’ Appeals denied service connection for hypertension
CCK successfully appealed a Board of Veterans’ Appeals decision to the that denied the Veteran service connection for hypertension. The Board found that the evidence did not demonstrate service connection was warranted on the basis of continuity of symptomatology. The Board also found that VA had no obligation to provide the Veteran with a medical examination.
The Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims agrees with CCK’s arguments
On appeal, the Court agreed with CCK that the Board neglected to provide the Veteran with an adequate hearing. At the Veteran’s hearing, the hearing officer failed to inform him that he could submit evidence of continuity of symptomatology. Thus, the hearing was inadequate.
Additionally, the Court agreed with CCK that the Board erred in its determination that the Veteran was not entitled to a medical examination. The Board found a medical examination unwarranted. However, it failed to explain why the veteran’s current hypertension diagnosis and in-service occurrences of elevated blood pressure readings did not indicate a potential relationship between the two, and thus warrant a medical examination.
In light of these errors, the Board remanded the issue of service connection for hypertension back to the Board for it to make a new determination on the claim.