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The American Bar Association is unveiling a website for volunteer lawyers interested in helping to ensure veterans receive disability compensation. The site will serve as a key tool for the Veterans’ Claims Assistance Network, a pilot program recently announced by the ABA, the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Legal Services Corp.
The pilot program aims to reduce the backlog of veterans’ claims by engaging pro bono lawyers mobilized through a range of legal service providers — including members of the Military Spouse JD Network and those funded by the Legal Services Corp — to provide free assistance to unrepresented veterans with claims pending at the St. Petersburg, Fla., and Chicago regional VA offices.
“The ABA is proud to take the lead in connecting veterans with pro bono attorneys who will help them receive the aid our nation owes them for their selfless courage,” ABA President James R. Silkenat said. “We hope that our initial focus on Chicago and St. Petersburg can swiftly be expanded across the country.”
Interested lawyers can visit the ABA VCAN website at www.ambar.org/vcan and join the volunteer roster, with the case referral system expected to launch this fall. While waiting for case referrals, volunteers will be contacted about no-cost continuing legal education courses on preparing veterans’ claims as well as information about how to become VA-accredited.