i was diagnosed with a mental illness in the military and it was part of the reason why i was separated . i have done 6 months and 22 days of military service . my dates of service was from November 15 , 1996 through June 6 of 1997 . i did 8 weeks of boot camp and 5 weeks of advanced individual training and the rest at permanent duty station . my discharge was an uncharacterized and my reason for separation was entry level performance and bad conduct . . i have several medical records from civilian doctors who have documented my mental illness for the past 13 to 14 years . I currently draw social security disability . the doctors that i have seen have told me that my mental illness is incurable and i will always have it . there was not any war going on doing my dates of service . I am age 35 .
You should have a lawyer experienced in VA claims look at your records. I recommend Seth Director, who you can find here on AVVO. You say you have an Entry Level Separation and a Bad Conduct Discharge, but you cannot have both of these. So you need someone to look at your records and let you know if you qualify for benefits.
You need to look at your DD214. If it was uncharacterized you may be entitled to VA benefits. Bad conduct discharges from a general court martial makes a person ineligble for VA.. If it wasfrom a summary court martial it may or may not. You will need a Dd214 to apply for VA... I recommend applying and submitting the DD214. Many of the service organizations like DAV have certifedpeople that can assistnas well.
This is for general information only. Nothing in this information should be construed as creating an attorney-client relationship nor shall any of this information be construed as providing legal advice. Laws change over time and differ from state to state. These answers are based on California Law.Applicability of the legal principles discussed may differ substantially in individual situations. You should not act upon the information presented herein without consulting an attorney about your particular situation. No attorney-client relationship is established.
It seems like you may have received an ELS from service, which you would have received no characterization of service. If you received no characterization, and the mental illness was initially diagnosed while on AD, you may have a righteous claim with VA. If the "bad conduct" you speak of was undocumented or unsubstantiated then you should have no problem with VA
There seems to be some questions concerning your characterization of service (ELS would not have been a possibility based upon the amount of service time you described). Regardless, when you first apply for benefits the VA will make an initial eligibility determination if there is a question about your characterization of service.
There is non-service-connected pension (low-income disabled veteran) and service-connected disability compensation. Based upon the facts provided, both may have some applicability to your current situation. You can submit both an application for non-service-connected pension and disability compensation using a VA Form VA Form 21-526.
The Texas Veterans Commission is a state entity established to assist veterans in obtaining VA benefits. They can be contacted at http://www.tvc.state.tx.us/Home.aspx. If you have questions feel free to contact me at [email protected] or at 732-382-6070.
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