Veterans Law CLE

This program presented an exciting opportunity to learn more about VA benefits and appeals, military discharge upgrade issues and other important issues for veterans. Attendees found education and networking opportunities for all veterans service providers, including attorneys, veterans service officers, tribal veterans representatives and counselors and other mental health providers. Sessions offered both foundational and advanced instruction on topics important for all service providers assisting veterans with legal issues.

Presentations and panels on the first day covered all required topics for accreditation to practice before the Department of Veterans Affairs as well as other important issues for veterans, including military toxic exposure and veterans treatment courts.Chief Judge Robert Davis of the U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims led a panel on veterans law basics to get the accreditation topics started. The agenda finished with a focus on tribal veterans services and a roundtable discussion regarding the needs of veterans within Indian country.

Presentations and panels on the second day were devoted to military discharge upgrade practice and advocacy for veterans with less-than-fully-honorable discharges. Topics included basic discharge upgrade applications and advanced advocacy tips for practice before the discharge review boards. We also had a live remote feed presentation from professors in the Yale University Department of Psychiatry about working with mental health experts to obtain forensic evaluations in support of discharge upgrade applications. We had panels and presentations on VA character of discharge determinations, creating a sustainable volunteer discharge upgrade program, and advocating for veterans through litigation, legislation and rulemaking.

Scholarship Information

Scholarship assistance was offered to Tribal Veterans Service Officers or Tribal Veteran Representatives that offset $150 of the cost of travel to the Veterans Law CLE, in the form of expense reimbursement.  

These scholarships are thanks to a generous grant from the Foundation of the Federal Bar Association, secured through competitive process by the FBA’s Veterans & Military Law Section.  The Foundation’s mission is to (1) promote and support legal research and education; (2) advance the science of jurisprudence; (3) facilitate the administration of justice; and (4) foster improvements in the practice of Federal law.  You can find more information on the Foundation website and the Federal Bar Association’s Veterans & Military Law Section.