Good Paper and Bad Paper Eligibility for VA benefits with multiple periods of service or enlistments
THIS INFORMATION SHOULD NOT BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD STRONGLY CONSIDER THE BENEFITS OF CONSULTING WITH A TRAINED LEGAL PROFESSIONAL
This is an exciting bit of information to post as there are many rumors and opinions but few seem to know the answer.
If a Veteran had an honorable period of service or a Reservist receives an honorable discharge from a mobilization on their DD-214, but subsequently suffer from alleged misconduct and receive “bad paper” or an other than honorable discharge, bad conduct discharge or dishonorable discharge, is that Veteran still eligible for VA benefits?
ANSWER: Generally yes. More info and some links below. The Service-Connected disability claims should relate to the honorable (or in VA language not dishonorable) period of service. This eligibility also includes those Veterans with a characterization of discharge that is General Under Honorable.
The Air Force send such a query to the VA in 1991 and here is the answer in this cite and I have placed links to the articles below:
3. “Who is a Veteran?” by Congressional Research Service. http://www.ncdsv.org/images/CRS_WhoIsAVeteran-BasicEligibilityForVeterans’Benefits_1-23-2012.pdf