Many veterans mistakenly believe that a decision from the Board is final. Some are even told that they have no other options. But that isn't true: if the Board of Veterans’ Appeals (Board) denies your claim, you can appeal to the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims (CAVC).
Even if you were previously represented by another attorney or a VSO, our attorneys can appeal your Board decision to the CAVC. They work pro bono, meaning you pay nothing for them to represent you at the CAVC.
CAVC Appeals Are Legal, Not Factual
The CAVC is an independent court that reviews only Board decisions. Arguments before the CAVC must allege that the Board made a legal error and must be based on statutes, regulations, and case law. The CAVC generally does not make factual decisions, unlike the Regional Office or the Board.
Our experienced attorneys have successfully argued cases for many clients at the CAVC. Their arguments have also won precedential decisions, which shape the law for all veterans.
CAVC Process Is Nothing Like the Agency Process
The CAVC process is nothing like the process that you experienced before the Regional Office or Board.
You must file an appeal to the CAVC within 120 days from the date of the Board decision you disagree with. You will then be given a deadline to review the Record Before the Agency (RBA). VA provides the RBA, which includes every document available to the Board when it made its decision. The RBA is essentially the only evidence that the CAVC can consider when reviewing your appeal.
After you receive the RBA, the CAVC will set a deadline for you to file a written brief. The CAVC will also order a pre-briefing conference, called a Rule 33 Conference, with a government attorney who represents the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. The purpose of the Rule 33 Conference is to see if you and the Secretary can agree that the Board made errors in its decision. Before the Rule 33 Conference, you must submit a memorandum summarizing the issues that you intend to argue to the CAVC. If you and the Secretary agree that the Board erred, you will both submit a joint motion for remand to the CAVC, which will require the Board to issue a new decision fixing the errors.
If you and the Secretary do not agree that the Board erred, you will have 30 days to file your full brief to the CAVC. The Secretary then will have 30 days to respond in his own brief. Finally, you will then have 15 days to respond to the Secretary’s brief. Once the CAVC receives all required briefs, it will consider the arguments and issue a decision.
Some appeals require additional work before the CAVC issues a decision, including oral arguments before CAVC judges and additional briefs. See the CAVC website for all of its rules and its own description of this process.
Let our attorneys manage this intensive legal process for you.
Choose Our Attorneys for Your CAVC Appeal
Our attorneys know the law, they know the process, and they know how to argue and win before the CAVC. They also work pro bono, meaning you pay nothing for them to represent you at the CAVC.
Contact us at 303-449-4773 for a free consultation. And remember, you have only 120 days from the date of the Board decision to file your appeal to the CAVC.