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What is a CUE Claim?

Published on June 22nd, 2020

A motion for a revision of a previously denied clain based on clear and unmistakable error (CUE), is the one card left up your sleeve when you have exhausted all your appeals options for your disability claim. These claims are extremely difficult to win, and almost always require the assistance of an experienced legal professional. But for many veterans, a successful CUE claim is what finally gets them the justice they deserve.

At Jackson & MacNichol, we are prepared to explore every possible avenue to appeal the denial of your disability benefits. Fortunately, we are usually able to bring our clients’ cases to a positive resolution without resorting to a CUE claim. But if you have missed the deadline for filing an appeal, or you have already taken your case through the full appeals process, a motion for revision based on CUE may be the right option for you. For more information, call us today at 1(800) 524-3339 for a free consultation.

A CUE Claim Is Usually a Last Resort

Despite how rarely CUE claims come up during the VA compensation process, they are a common topic among veterans. This is because this legal procedure does have benefits.  The most important of those benefits is the lack of any time limits. Unlike a disability claim appeal, which must be filed within one year of your receipt of a decision letter, there is no time limit for filing a motion for revision based on CUE. This means that if your claim succeeds, you may be entitled to back pay dating back to your initial application–no matter how far in the past it was.

Since you only get one chance to file for a CUE claim, and the requirements are very strict, you have to do a lot of groundwork–preferably with the help of a lawyer. A request for a revision based on CUE needs to meet stringent pleading requirements, which include the following:

  • Final Decision–You must be challenging a final decision from either the Regional Office (RO) or the Board of Veterans Appeals (BVA). Regional Office (RO) decisions are generally not final, since you can appeal them to the BVA. But if you miss the appeal deadline, that RO decision may become final.
  • Error of fact or law–You must prove that the decision did not take into account the correct facts, or the decision maker did not apply the correct laws and regulations that were in effect at the time of the original decision.
  • Harmful error–You must also show that this error was the primary cause of your denial. In other words, if the decision maker could have correctly denied your benefits for other reasons, the error you are claiming cannot be the basis for a successful CUE challenge.
  • Undebatable error–You must be able to show that a reasonable person could not disagree that an error was made.

Taken together, the pleading requirements for a CUE claim can be difficult to meet in most cases. For this reason, it is usually better to use the traditional methods of appeal if they are still available to you. The standard appeal process is much less intensive, and much more forgiving of minor errors.

Talk to a Lawyer If You Are Considering a CUE Claim

Before investing in a request for revision based on CUE, it may be to your advantage to consult with a lawyer. Not only do they have the training and experience necessary for your claim to succeed, they can tell you if you have other, easier options for appealing your case. If you or a loved one has been denied their veterans disability benefits, Jackson & MacNichol can help. Call us today at 1(800) 524-3339 and we’ll give you a free consultation about your case.

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