On Sept. 16, the Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs  (ADVA) announced a new landmark partnership with the National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) to establish unrivaled free access to legal representation for Alabama veterans and their families in appeals before the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC).

“The partnership between the ADVA and NVLSP is a win-win for the state of Alabama and for Alabama Veterans,” said ADVA Commissioner Kent Davis. “Alabama veterans will now have access to an outstanding national legal team who will defend their rights at the highest legal levels, to ensure fairness in the disability benefits arena.  Also, ADVA will capitalize on access to the extensive training and professional development portfolio that NVLSP offers our staff of veteran advocates. This training will be priceless as ADVA teams continue to serve Alabama veterans, now and going forward.”

NVLSP is a national nonprofit organization that works to ensure the government delivers to America’s 22 million veterans and active-duty personnel the benefits to which they are entitled because of disabilities resulting from their military service to our country.

“We are delighted to partner with the Alabama Department of Veterans Affairs and we welcome the opportunity to capitalize on our shared expertise to help Alabama veterans and their families receive the benefits to which they are entitled,” said NVLSP Executive Director Paul Wright.

As a matter of background, when disability claims are denied by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, veterans have the right to appeal to the CAVC. Through this partnership, NVLSP will provide free legal representation in support of appeal cases. This process begins when the NVLSP reviews a case in which a Veteran’s appeal to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (BVA), the highest authority within the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, is denied and determines there are grounds for an appeal to the CAVC. When this occurs, NVLSP offers to represent the veteran or the veteran’s family at no cost. This strategic partnership between the ADVA and the NVLSP marks the first time this free legal service available to Veterans in Alabama.

In addition to NVLSP’s assistance to veterans with claims appeals, NVLSP will also assist Alabama veterans with discharge upgrades, which will help veterans access benefits they may be wrongfully denied due to a less than honorable discharge.

To learn more about NVLSP, visit www.nvlsp.org.