Change a Military Medical Separation to Retirement
If you were you medically separated from the Military between 11 Sep 2001 and 31 Dec 2009, then you may be eligible to have your disability rating reviewed, potentially increased, and your separation re-characterized as a a disability retirement resulting in valuable benefits to you and your family.
Physical Disability Board of ReviewOn January 28, 2008, President George W. Bush signed into law the Dignified Treatment of Wounded Warriors Act of 2008. Among other provisions, the Act established the Physical Disability Board of Review (PDBR) to provide medically separated Veterans with the opportunity to have their Department of Defense (DoD) disability ratings reviewed to ensure fairness and accuracy.
Eligibility to ApplyYou are eligible to apply for PDBR review if you were: 1) medically separated between September 11, 2001 and December 31, 2009; 2) assigned a combined DoD disability rating of 20% or less; and 3) found not eligible for retirement.
Potential BenefitsIf you apply to the PDBR and your separation is re-characterized to a disability retirement, the potential benefits are significant. 1) You will receive (retroactive to the day of your original disability separation) monthly disability retirement pay from your military service. However, please note - by law, all previously awarded disability severance pay may be subject to recoupment from these new retirement payments before you can actually begin receiving your entire disability retired pay. 2) You will be eligible for DoD TRICARE healthcare coverage (retroactive to the day of your original disability separation.) Coverage is also extended to your eligible dependents. Additionally, you may request to have TRICARE retroactively reimburse your previous medical expenditures. 3) You will be eligible to buy the Survivor's Benefit Plan insurance for your dependents (you would be responsible for retroactively paying insurance premiums to bring your coverage up to date.) 4) You (and your eligible dependents) will have all rights and privileges of a retired Veteran from your military service. This would include commissaries, exchanges, space available recreation and travel, and other benefits available via State and private sector organizations.
Where YOU Go From HereAccording to the DoD, approximately 77,000 Veterans are eligible to apply to the PDBR. As of March 2014 less than 10% of the eligible population of Veterans have applied. If you believe you may be eligible, you are highly encouraged to contact an attorney that represents Service Members and Veterans facing Medical and Physical Evaluation Boards to evaluate your specific situation and possibly help you obtain all potential benefits to which you may be entitled!