WHAT WE DO
OCC provides free legal representation to the most seriously wounded of our transitioning service members who served in Afghanistan and Iraq.
These service members face a tough road back to civilian life, often facing many challenges at once: serious injuries and pain, military discharge hearings, the loss of civilian careers, family stresses and Dept. of Veterans Affairs wait times. Unlike other veterans service organizations, we step in before the service member becomes a veteran, and have the ability to directly impact what happens when they later go before the Dept. of Veterans Affairs and Social Security before they are even there.
We do this by first providing counsel during the Dept. of Defense's military discharge process for those seriously wounded in Afghanistan or Iraq. This process is over a year long, includes hearings and is so complex that the military requires the injured service member to have an attorney. There are presently more than 10,000 service members currently in this discharge process because of service-connected injuries suffered during the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Unparalleled in either the nonprofit or for-profit spheres, our top-notch legal counsel team has over a decade of experience and a long track-record of results in these Dept. of Defense discharge hearings, obtaining military pensions, family healthcare and tax exemptions for hundreds. Our results aside, taking the complicated paperwork and procedures off the plate of the service members is also a tremendous service, even when the process runs as it should.
After the discharge hearing, the service member becomes a veteran and is put into the Dept. of Veterans Affairs healthcare system and legal processes, as well as Social Security Disability. Those who received competent representation and good results at the Dept. of Defense fair much better before the DVA and Social Security than those who did not. Likewise, having a qualified, experienced attorney before these agencies can also have a tremendous impact on the ability of the service member and his family to obtain what the law provides for those injured in service to their country.
As with all legal proceedings, the difference between having an attorney and not having an attorney often times is everything. These men and women should not have to face these complex government proceedings alone, nor should they have to pay an attorney as yet an additional price to pay for their defending our nation.
Unlike traditional legal service charities which rely mostly upon the good will of attorneys who will work for free in their spare time, we utilize volunteer attorneys as well as in-house attorneys who are committed full-time to this mission.
Our mission is:
- to show our thanks to those who defended us,
- to make available, free top-notch attorneys to the service members who were wounded in Afghanistan and Iraq,
- to make certain they are afforded what the law provides,
- to bring comfort to our wounded service members by taking the paperwork and maze of procedures of three governmental agencies off of their plates and explaining the processes and likely results.