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IU Maurer School of Law establishes clinic to assist veterans with disability benefits

  • June 18, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The Indiana University Maurer School of Law announced today that it has established a Veterans Disability Law Clinic.

The first of its kind in the state, the clinic will represent veterans -- at no charge -- whose applications for disability benefits have been denied and who wish to appeal the decision to a decision review officer or to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals. The clinic will also provide free services to veterans who seek a discharge upgrade or a correction to their military record in order to receive VA benefits.

“The process for getting veterans’ disability benefits can be confusing, complex and lengthy,” said Carwina Weng, clinical professor of law and director of the school’s Disability Law Clinic. “We hope that the clinic will help our clients navigate this difficult process so they can receive the benefits they have earned.”

Second- and third-year students at the law school will handle client intake and fact-gathering and represent clients at hearings, all under the supervision of a VA-accredited attorney. Their participation will take place within the law school’s Disability Law Clinic.

Clinic services will generally be available to all income-eligible veterans residing in Monroe, Brown, Greene, Lawrence, Morgan and Owen counties, but the clinic will accept any eligible client willing to travel to Bloomington. Weng said there are nearly 7,500 veterans in Monroe County alone. The clinic will begin accepting clients on July 1.

Weng expressed special thanks to Polli Pollem, director of the Indiana Legal Services Military Assistance Project; Tom Triplett, regional service to the armed forces manager, American Red Cross, Indiana Regional Office; Larry Catt, Monroe County veterans service officer; Margaret Baechtold, director of Indiana University Veterans Support Services; retired Col. John Tilford, U.S. Army Reserve and veterans advocate; Ashley Ahlbrand, IU Maurer School of Law; and Kirk White, assistant vice president and military liaison, Office of the President, Indiana University, for helping make the clinic possible.

Anyone interested in scheduling an appointment with the clinic or seeking more information may contact Weng at 812-855-9229 or at iubdlc@indiana.edu.

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Media Contacts

Ken Turchi

Assistant dean for finance and administration

  • Maurer School of Law
  • Office 812-856-4044
  • kturchi@indiana.edu

James Boyd

  • IU Maurer School of Law
  • Office 812-855-0156
  • joboyd@indiana.edu