Bird Marella attorney David Hurwitz obtained a pro bono victory on behalf of a former U.S. Marine who served in a combat deployment in Iraq. The ravages of war left him suffering with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The Marine Corps discharged the client with a less than honorable discharge status, depriving him of veterans benefits.
Working closely with the nonprofit Inner City Law Center, Hurwitz argued the client’s appeal before the Naval Discharge Review Board in Washington, DC. After a two hour presentation, the Board shifted from a 3-2 decision by an earlier panel against the client, to a unanimous 5-0 decision in his favor. The client’s discharge was upgraded to General Under Honorable Conditions, restoring his pride in showing his military discharge paperwork for employment, housing, and school purposes.
Earlier this year, Hurwitz successfully represented the client in the initial phase of this pro bono matter, an appeal of the Veteran Affairs’ denial of the client’s claim for disability benefits based on his discharge status. The client was awarded nearly $100,000 in retroactive benefits, plus monthly benefits going forward.
Bird Marella also wishes to recognize the work of former associate Sandhya Ramadas, who worked on the briefing of the client’s appeal before leaving the firm to join the United States Attorney’s Office.