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Sexual Assault in the Military & VA Disability Claims

The past several years there has rightly been an intense focus on the issue of sexual assaults within the military. A Pentagon study released in 2014 found a 50% increase in reports of military sexual assault. These crimes are heinous and negatively impact the morale of our women and men in uniform by degrading unit trust and cohesion. The emotional impact from a sexual assault can last a lifetime.

According to the VA, the most common reactions following a sexual assault are:

  • Major Depressive Disorder
  • Anger Management Issues
  • Shame and Guilt
  • Social Problems
  • Sexual Problems
  • Alcohol and Drug Abuse
  • PTSD

All of the above can be considered long term disabilities. Without the proper treatment many of these can spiral out of control until they are causing the individual assaulted even more long term damage. It is important to have the ability to seek any treatment necessary to recover from the trauma of sexual assault.

Unfortunately, according the Service Women’s Action Network (SWAN), the Department of Veterans Affairs is less likely to approve disability claims for PTSD as a result of sexual assault than they are for other PTSD related claims. This rejection of a claim can be seen as a denial that a sexual assault ever happened and only adds to the trauma of the victim.

If you feel that you PTSD claim has been unfairly denied, contact the law offices of Shook & Stone. Our lawyers are available to discuss your case during a FREE and confidential consultation.

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