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14 Questions about Veterans Disability Compensation Benefits Claims 

When a Veteran starts considering whether or not to file a VA Disability Claim, there are a lot of questions that he or she tends to ask. Over the last 10 years, the following are the 14 most common basic questions I am asked about when it comes to filing VA Disability Claims.









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Loose Cannon

Fired Due To Ptsd...should I Get A Lawyer?

Question

I need advice...and I'll try to keep this short. I was recently fired from my job after a meeting with my employer where I made him aware that I was suffering from PTSD. I am a 20-year honorably discharged retired Marine- retired in 2004, VA diagnosed with PTSD in 2005. A few days ago, I received a "severence package" in the mail. Basically, they are offering me about $2800 to keep my mouth shut (no speaking to the press, other employees, etc.) regarding my termination. They put all this in writing and gave me 3 weeks to accept it. The problem is that if I sign and return it I will also be waiving my legal right to sue. Fact is they knew I was receiving treatment for PTSD and fired me anyways...Isn't this illegal? Do I need to see a lawyer, show him their "proposed" severence package, and sue them or am I wasting my time. I really could use some good advice here. Can anyone relate or help?

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9 answers to this question

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Get the letter to an attorney asap.

J

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You need an attorney. Don't delay.

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LC,

Don't signed a danged thing yet.

You will probably need legal representation from a firm that

handles EEOC and ADA claims.

I've sent a shout out to one of our members that can probably

provide some accurate guidance for your situation.

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Get a GOOD lawyer!!!! copy everything they sent.

I need advice...and I'll try to keep this short. I was recently fired from my job after a meeting with my employer where I made him aware that I was suffering from PTSD. I am a 20-year honorably discharged retired Marine- retired in 2004, VA diagnosed with PTSD in 2005. A few days ago, I received a "severence package" in the mail. Basically, they are offering me about $2800 to keep my mouth shut (no speaking to the press, other employees, etc.) regarding my termination. They put all this in writing and gave me 3 weeks to accept it. The problem is that if I sign and return it I will also be waiving my legal right to sue. Fact is they knew I was receiving treatment for PTSD and fired me anyways...Isn't this illegal? Do I need to see a lawyer, show him their "proposed" severence package, and sue them or am I wasting my time. I really could use some good advice here. Can anyone relate or help?

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I need advice...and I'll try to keep this short. I was recently fired from my job after a meeting with my employer where I made him aware that I was suffering from PTSD. I am a 20-year honorably discharged retired Marine- retired in 2004, VA diagnosed with PTSD in 2005. A few days ago, I received a "severence package" in the mail. Basically, they are offering me about $2800 to keep my mouth shut (no speaking to the press, other employees, etc.) regarding my termination. They put all this in writing and gave me 3 weeks to accept it. The problem is that if I sign and return it I will also be waiving my legal right to sue. Fact is they knew I was receiving treatment for PTSD and fired me anyways...Isn't this illegal? Do I need to see a lawyer, show him their "proposed" severence package, and sue them or am I wasting my time. I really could use some good advice here. Can anyone relate or help?

Well, you have not stated if you were fired with cause. If you look at the termination papers they should give their reasons for the termination. Many states, like Texas, have a right to work set of laws, which basically means you can be fired for any reason or no reason at all. Other states have more protection for the average joe. In any case, it is very hard to sue a former employer and win unless you have some pretty good evidence you can use.

I am not an attorney, but do suffer from PTSD. I worked many years in the high tech arena and have lost many jobs because of my PTSD. Absolutely none of the positions that I was asked to leave ever cited my PTSD as a reason. The fact that they are offering you a severance package speaks pretty good for the firm these days.

The choice is yours and I wish you luck in the future. (PTSD is a gift from your service that keeps on giving!)

Edited by NSA-Saigon-ET

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they knew I was receiving treatment for PTSD and fired me anyways...Isn't this illegal?

The fact that you are receiving treatment does not disallow them from firing you. It depends on the specifics. If there were previous behaviors that you feel were caused by your PTSD that you engaged in at work that created a hostile work environment or resulted in your not being able to perform your job duties there could easily be cause for termination. The fact that you feel the behaviors were caused by PTSD does not mean they are required to accept your opinion. However, if they are terminating you because they feel there is an implied risk keeping an individual diagnosed with PTSD on their staff then they are asking for a wrongful termination suit.

Check on the Americans With Disabilities Act. Find out if the employer is large enough to be required to comply with the ADA. Also, find out who is handling the charges under the ADA. It used to be the EEOC.

If they terminated you without telling you a specific reason then getting an attorney might be the only way to find out why they terminated your employment. I would not pay any significant advance fees to the attorney. When I went through this I found an attorney who accepted the claim on a fee/contingency basis. I was terminated because the employer did not want a person who was disabled working in the department that I was in. The employer later ammended the cause for termination. I spent six months battling the employer under the ADA and did not get a dime. The EEOC ruled that the employer did not violate any laws when terminating my employment.

In this state misconduct at work usually disqualifies an individual for unemployment insurance. Talk to your doctor and file either for unemployment insurance or state disability insurance. If your doctor feels your PTSD caused your termination you should be eligible for state disability insurance. It depends on what state you are in.

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