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Supreme Court To Decide Whether To Hear Vets Case


broncovet

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Early next year, the Supreme Court will decide whether to hear this Vets case:

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/20/a-case-that-could-unhinge-a-veterans-benefits-hamster-wheel/

This would appear to be a good thing for Vets:

The CAVC would be able to make factual determinations and not just remands. This would appear to be Congress intent.

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I have a feeling the Supremes will not hear this case.. it will open a big can of worms.. and the va will have mud on its face....

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Hello All,

Bronco,,,,, I too think it would be great and a total plus for all Veterans especially those that have been in lockdown for years in the appeals process. However I also know that the VA is not going down without a fight . This is their ace in the hole ,,,,,,, They use it and use it everyday to keep from awarding a veterans benefits. If this VA is ever going to get corrected it must be by Congress to change the WAY the process has to go. I do not think the Supremes are going to get off into it. We all know the problems and we are PRODUCTS of this process system , and its just about money and power. Something VA is not going to relinquish ........ they haven't had to in the past ,,,,,, and I doubt if there going to now.

Oh yes , I forgot,,,,,,,,just think how a decision favorable for the Veterans by the Supremes would affect the Bonus system to the VBA . Yea it means that the 180,000,000 dollars in bonuses last year would come into great jeopardy. Something the upper managers and ROs are not going to allow. You can expect a fight from the Justice Dept. and they will find a way to have it thrown out. I wish it was not so but I have to be looking at how they have developed the PROCESS and it took a long time to get it to where they want it. And now it runs like a well oiled machine.......if you are the VA.

I think we all want it but deep down , we probably will not see it in our lifetime.

Still every Veteran has to try to make the wrongs come to the attention of other Veterans and Advocates and NEVER GIVE UP . God Bless, C.C.

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Hello All,

Bronco,,,,, I too think it would be great and a total plus for all Veterans especially those that have been in lockdown for years in the appeals process. However I also know that the VA is not going down without a fight . This is their ace in the hole ,,,,,,, They use it and use it everyday to keep from awarding a veterans benefits. If this VA is ever going to get corrected it must be by Congress to change the WAY the process has to go. I do not think the Supremes are going to get off into it. We all know the problems and we are PRODUCTS of this process system , and its just about money and power. Something VA is not going to relinquish ........ they haven't had to in the past ,,,,,, and I doubt if there going to now.

Oh yes , I forgot,,,,,,,,just think how a decision favorable for the Veterans by the Supremes would affect the Bonus system to the VBA . Yea it means that the 180,000,000 dollars in bonuses last year would come into great jeopardy. Something the upper managers and ROs are not going to allow. You can expect a fight from the Justice Dept. and they will find a way to have it thrown out. I wish it was not so but I have to be looking at how they have developed the PROCESS and it took a long time to get it to where they want it. And now it runs like a well oiled machine.......if you are the VA.

I think we all want it but deep down , we probably will not see it in our lifetime.

Still every Veteran has to try to make the wrongs come to the attention of other Veterans and Advocates and NEVER GIVE UP . God Bless, C.C.

Very nicely put.C.C. Sad but true.

Aggie

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It is just another classic example of politicians broken promises to "eliminate red tape for Veterans". They have an opportunity to do that, but instead, the VA elects to fight it tooth and nail.

The VA WANTS these
Hamster Wheel Delays built into the system, and will fight to the death to keep them going: An excerpt from the article follows:

A Case That Could Unhinge a Veterans Benefits ‘Hamster Wheel’ By JAMES DAO

If there is one thing more frustrating, complicated and time-consuming than applying for veterans disability benefits, it may well be appealing the decisions made by the Department of Veterans Affairs on those very claims.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

BVA employees and judges would lose jobs. Even people at the VARO would lose their jobs. Both BVA and CAVC remand most of their cases. Hell, most BVA appeals sit for a year waiting to be certified to the BVA and then another year or two to be heard. Then if you want to go to CAVC it takes a year just to get there and a year to do all the back and forth. Then the case must be assigned a judge and he must make a decision to remand and that takes a year at least. In the meantime people who get paid are moving cases around and losing things. This means employment for VA workers and misery for the rest of us.

The famouse Cushman CUE claim started sometime in the 90's I believe and is on remand to the BVA right now after going to Federal Court and back to CAVC. He is 100% now but was unable to work since the 1980's when his claim was mishandled by a VARO worker. We consider him a big winner since his case established that vet's have a property right(I think) in their own claims. He is in his 60's and still waiting for retro as far as I know. I wonder how long my lawyer will stick with me since it has been 6 years since he filed his first brief in my CUE? He said if he could not win my CUE he would never do one again because it was so obvious.....heh, heh. He had only really worked SSD claims for 15 years and did not fully appreciate the VA until he got a copy of my file and found other vet's stuff in my file and saw what a mess a 35 year old file could look like at the VA. We do need vets and vet lawyers to lead the way for the next generation. We have seen the promised land, but we might not get there with you.

John

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I believe we have a better than 50/50 chance of this case being heard by the Supremes. My belief is based on this 2010 exchange during an unrelated case copied below. After Citizens United, I am not Chief Justice Robert's strongest supporter, but I do consider him honest and intelligent. Congress is incapable of resolving the problems with the VA. They have proven this time and time again. Congress complains, the VA lies, and things just keep getting worse. All the improvements we have seen, and they are scant, have come from the courts. Having the case heard doesn't guarantee that it will be decided in our favor, but we can hope.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

The speakers in the excerpt below are U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice William Roberts and U.S. Solicitor General Anthony Yang. The Solicitor General is, generally speaking, the government’s attorney and advocate before the United States Supreme Court.

When Assistant to the Solicitor General Anthony Yang got up for his rebuttal in the case, Roberts interrupted him and the exchange went like this:

ROBERTS: Counsel do you — do you dispute your friend’s statement that 42 percent of the time in Social Security cases the government’s position is unjustified, and 70 percent of the time in veterans’ cases?

YANG: Well, I think that reflects the stakes often, Your Honor. Oftentimes the government does not contest, for instance, the $2,000 EAJA award and because it’s the government, has to –

ROBERTS: So whenever it really makes a difference, 70 percent of the time the government’s position is substantially unjustified?

YANG: In cases in the VA context, the number’s not quite that large, but is a substantial number of cases at the court of appeals –

ROBERTS: What number would you accept?

YANG: It was, I believe in the order of either 50 or maybe slightly more than 50 percent. It might be 60. But the number is substantial that you get a reversal, and in almost all of those cases EAJA –

ROBERTS: Well that’s really startling, isn’t it? In litigating with veterans, the government more often than not takes a position that is substantially unjustified?

YANG: It is an unfortunate number, Your Honor. And it is — it’s accurate.

Here is a link to the full article on law.com: http://www.law.com/jsp/article.jsp?id=1202444391590

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Hello Jim,,,,,,,

You know it should make all Veterans sick to their stomach to see the attitude of Mr. Yang defending VAs position on something like this. How can Mr. Yang and many other people in the VA and the Justice Dept. sleep at night knowing what they do and say are basically against logical and sound minds.

I believe Justice Roberts is kinda in a state of disbelief or confusion himself about how the VA really works.

Happy New year....NEVER GIVE UP .God Bless, C.C.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I read this some time ago. This exchange seemed like an eye opener to the Chief Justice. I think this would be very interesting if they started hearing them. Mine took 2 years with the CAVC and the BVA moved very quickly to get me service connection once the court ruled in my favor. The training at the VA is subpar and that is a huge part of the problem.

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Below is the cert petiton in Byron.

http://sblog.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/12-389-2012-09-17-Lady-Byron-Supreme-Court-Petition.pdf

There is another cert petition pending which, from my perspective, has a greater likelihood of getting a grant, Veterans for Common Sense v. Shinseki. The petition can be access at http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/veterans-for-common-sense-v-shinseki/

Seth Director

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Seth

You seem knowledgeable and speak with some authority. You say you are a "director" but my question is "What do you direct?"

Please enlighten us to why you think VCS has a greater chance of success than Byron i, both Supreme court cases pending.

Both seem to address the VA's accountability, or lack thereof.

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Bronco,

"Director" was bestowed upon me at birth and is not a reflection of knowledge or authority. . . it's my last name. Trust me, throw a rank in front of it and it has confused many folks.

As for cert grant (which is only about 1% of total petitions), I believe there is a greater likelihood of the Supreme Court addressing a pure question of law regarding the jurisdiction of a federal district court to review systemic timeliness issues (which are not related to a specific VA decision, as argued by petitioner ) in the VHA and VBA, rather than what appears to me to be to me a factual question. Assuming the Supreme Court accepts petitioner Byron's argument that Fed. Cir. failed to acknowledge the "futility rule" it would appear to me that the Supreme Court would still need to delve into a factual dispute as to whether or not the record was sufficiently complete so that remand was "futile".

Additionally, there is somewhat of a circuit court split in VFCS v. Shinseki (though admittedly not as clear as the petitioner indicates when you read the underlying cases) and, at minimum, the dissenting opinion agreed with petitioner in the 9th Cir. en banc decision.

Personally, I would love to see both cases granted and --- as the Supreme Court told me in 2007 cert petition --- I've been wrong before.

Seth

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Here is last part of the US Supreme Court Docket re: Veterans for Common Sense V Secretary Shinseki:

Nov 1 2012

Order further extending time to file response to petition to and including November 30, 2012.

Nov 30 2012

Brief of respondents Eric K. Shinseki, Secretary of Veterans Affairs, et al. in opposition filed.

Dec 11 2012

Reply of petitioners Veterans for Common Sense, et al. filed. (Distributed)

Dec 12 2012

DISTRIBUTED for Conference of January 4, 2013.

http://www.supremecourt.gov/Search.aspx?FileName=/docketfiles/12-296.htm

Nothing on Byron case yet.

The latest info I have from VCS is this:

“Date: January 3, 2013

In the next few days, the Supreme Court will determine if it will hear arguments in the case, Veterans for Common Sense v. Shinseki. An announcement could come as early as this Friday.”

If anyone gets any news as to whether the Supremes will hear those oral arguments, please let us all know.

http://veteransforcommonsense.org/2013/01/

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Great......now the backlog will automatically keep growing and no real answer to fix it or speed up decisions. This thing is broken and just as expected...... no one wants to fix it. Sad days continue to happen for our Veterans community. NEVER GIVE UP. God Bless, C.C.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

That is about where I thought it would go. Absolutely nowhere.

There have been numerous attempts to get the CVAC to do its job but remand central along with its little brother the BVA will continue to constipate the claims system with their remands and their dumping of claims into the black hole called the AMC.

Absolutely absurd.

J

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