The Paralyzed Veterans of America, Colonial Chapter is governed by a board of directors, including the President, Executive Vice President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and 3 Board Members. The office staff includes an executive director and part-time secretarial help as needed.
Board, general membership, executive committee and other committee meetings are held at the Elkton VFW, 208 W. High Street, Elkton, MD 21921. Board meetings are held on the second Wednesday of each month beginning at 11 a.m. ALL members are encouraged to attend.
VA Public Meetings
Thursday, April 30, 20151:00 pm to 4:00 pmOld ChapelMartinsburg VA Medical CenterTown Hall
Thursday, April 30, 20155:30 pm to 7:00 pmOld ChapelMartinsburg VA Medical CenterQuestions: 304-263-0811 ext. 4000
The VA is reaching out to Veterans, friends and family members regarding Traumatic Brain Injury or TBI.
What is TBI?Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) may happen from a blow or jolt to the head or an object penetrating the brain. When the brain is injured, the person can experience a change in consciousness that can range from becoming disoriented and confused to slipping into a coma. The person might also have a loss of memory for the time immediately before or after the event that caused the injury. Not all injuries to the head result in a TBI. Read More Here
Changes to Informal Claims
Bisbocci, PVA NSO
Almost every disabled veteran is aware that filing a
claim with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) can be complicated and confusing. Often Veterans have disabilities where there
is not a lot of evidence to support their claims. The most common culprits for
the lack of evidence are missing or nonexistent medical treatment records. Frequently,
Veterans have not been treated for their disabilities even if they are related to
their military service. Scenarios such
as these are where “Informal” claims can be most beneficial to Veterans.
An Informal claim or “Intent to file” a claim is an
essential tool created to save the effective date of a disability claim while it
is being developed for supporting evidence by the claimant. Non-specific
statements are the core of informal claims process, as Veterans only need to state
that they want to file claims for entitlement to service-connection for their
disabilities. It does not need to be a specific
disability they are claiming at that time. In the past, Informal claims could
be submitted to the VA through a variety of different ways. Veterans could
submit written statements to the VA in any manner from completing a VA form
21-4138 (Statement in Support of Claim), to a handwritten statement on a piece
of notebook paper.
Since March 24, 2015 this practice has changed. All claims that are filed with the VA must have
a designated standardized form. The VA’s new standardized form is VA
Form 21-0966 (Intent to File a Claim for Compensation or pension, survivors'
pension, or other benefit). The form
can be submitted through eBenefits, regular mail, telephone call to the VA call
center, or preferably through your Veterans Service Organization. After submitting the application, Veterans and
their representatives have up to one year to obtain relevant evidence and
submit it to the VA to support their claim. Filing the correct form not only
establishes an effective date of claim, but it can also establish entitlement
to an earlier effective date if the medical treatment records related to the
disability occurred within one year prior to the submission of the Informal
Various types of claims develop from the informal claims process.
A real-life example would be a Veteran who
was deployed to a combat zone and experienced ground combat. He or she had never
sought mental health treatment from the military, from a VA Medical Center, or
private physician. However, during the ensuing period from discharge, the
person struggles with all the classic symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
(PTSD) such as; disturbed sleep, jumpiness, and fits of rage. Finally, at the
insistence of their family and friends decides to file a claim for service-connected
disability compensation due to PTSD. Unfortunately, without treatment records
or a diagnosis to support claims, they would likely be denied based on a lack
of supporting evidence. By filing an Informal
claim, a Veteran protects the effective date and has one year from that date to
start mental health treatment and be formally diagnosed by a doctor. Once a diagnosis and nexus to military service
is established, the “Informal claim” becomes a “Formal claim” either by
notifying the VA Regional Office (VARO) that all of the evidence needed to
support the claim has been obtained and submitted, or at the expiration of the
one year period.
The success of any disability claim is based on the
strength of the evidence available for the decision maker to review. Filing an
Informal claim is a time-tested way for Veterans and their representatives to
develop evidence needed to build a strong case, thereby lessening the chance
for a denial. Please feel free to contact your local Paralyzed Veterans of
America National Service Officer for further assistance.
Ben Affleck Supports Paralyzed Veterans
About Paralyzed Veterans of America:
Paralyzed Veterans of America
is the only congressionally chartered veterans service organization dedicated solely for the benefit and representation of veterans with spinal cord injury
. For nearly 70 years, we have ensured that veterans have received the benefits
earned through their service to our nation; monitored their care in VA spinal cord injury units; and funded research and education
in the search for a cure and improved care for individuals with paralysis.
As a partner for life, Paralyzed Veterans also develops training and career services, works to ensure accessibility
in public buildings and spaces, provides health and rehabilitation opportunities through sports and recreation and advocates for veterans and all people with disabilities. With more than 70 offices and 34 chapters
, Paralyzed Veterans serves veterans, their families and their caregivers
in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. (www.pva.org
Paralyzed Veterans of America - Colonial Chapter
2015 Members of the Board of Directors
Ronald P. Hoskins, SR.
President / National Director
Executive Vice President
Larry T. Hughes
David W. Timberman
Secretary / Service Officer
Know the facts. Save a life.