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Overview of a Veteran Advocate’s Appellate Practice: How to Navigate the Board of Veterans’ Appeals and the Veterans Court
presented by
The South Carolina Bar-Continuing Legal Education Division
Live at the
Bar Conference Center
1501 Park Street
Columbia, SC 29202

About the Seminar
This seminar consist of VA Training required to represent veterans in the VA CLAIMS AND APPEALS PROCESS.  (You MUST BE ACCREDITED WITH VA PRIOR TO ATTENDING THE PROGRAM in order for the training to count either for certification or recertification.  AN ACCREDITATION APPLICATION PENDING APPROVAL WILL NOT SUFFICE.) 
Note:  Attorneys who are signing up for the VA Training: if not accredited, accreditation needs to be APPROVED BY VA'S OFFICE OF GENERAL COUNSEL prior to attending the seminar.
Any attorney who discusses VA benefits with clients must be accredited through the VA. Attorney accreditation
requires the following: (1) Application (VA Form 21a) submitted to the Department of Veterans Affairs – Office of General Counsel; (2) Self-certification regarding admission information to practice before any other court, bar, or State or Federal agency; and, (3) Determination of character and fitness (absent credible information to the contrary, the General Counsel will presume an attorney’s character and fitness to practice before the VA if an attorney’s membership is in good standing with the state bar). Within twelve (12) months of initial accreditation, an attorney must complete a CLE course approved by the state bar for a minimum of three (3) hours. Attorneys shall certify completion of the initial CLE requirement and submit the relevant information to the Office of General Counsel. The full text can be found at 38 C.F.R. §14.629(b) (1).
Overview of a Veteran Advocate’s Appellate Practice: How to Navigate the Board of Veterans’ Appeals and the Veterans Court
There are currently nearly 1 million claims from military veterans and their family members awaiting a decision by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), with more than another million expected to be filed in the next year. The tidal wave of claims has not only caused long delays in initial decisions but has contributed to an error rate in those initial decisions that is estimated at over 80%. Although claimants have a right to appeal any adverse decision, the appellate process is, if anything, even more backlogged than the initial determination process and can take even longer to address assertions of error. Knowing how to navigate the VA process for appealing and correcting errors is, therefore, a critical part of a veteran advocate’s toolkit. 
This course provides attorneys and non-attorneys with insights into the VA appellate process based on years of practice at the Board of Veterans’ Appeals and the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims. Experienced practitioners will discuss how to select the best appeal path, the timing of submitting additional evidence, keys to advocating before the Board, considerations in requesting a hearing, and strategies for optimizing required filings. In addition, the course will discuss the unique jurisdiction and authority of the Veterans Court, key Court rules and process requirements, and insights into successful advocacy before that body. The course will also include a 1 hour discussion of ethical issues in shifting from a “non-adversarial” adjudication process to a fully “adversarial” appellate system. 
Mr. Rosinski concentrates his practice on veterans’ rights and benefits. He has litigated cases on behalf of veterans and their families before the Department of Veterans Affairs regional offices, the Board of Veterans’ Appeals, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, federal district court, the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, and state courts. Mr. Rosinski has been an Adjunct Professor of Law and lectures and trains on veterans’ law, VA benefits, and related litigation techniques throughout the country. Mr. Rosinski has discussed veterans’ issues in national and local media, including 60 Minutes, the New York Times, the Washington Post, and numerous local outlets. 
Mr. Rosinski earned a Bachelor of Science, with distinction, in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Rochester in 1981 and a Juris Doctor, cum laude, from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1997. He is admitted to the bar in Georgia, South Carolina, and the District of Columbia, various federal jurisdictions, the Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, and the United States Supreme Court. He is a member of the American Bar Association, American Nuclear Society, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, Federal Bar Association, and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. 
Mr. Rosinski is a veteran of the United States Navy Submarine Force where he earned silver and gold dolphins, and was qualified as a nuclear engineering officer. 
Prof. John P. Freeman
Professor John P. Freeman is the John Campbell Professor Emeritus in Business and Professional Ethics. He is also a Distinguished Professor Emeritus at USC Law School. He joined the USC law faculty in 1973 and retired in 2008. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Notre Dame, and received an LL.M. in 1976 from the University of Pennsylvania Law School where he studied as a Graduate Fellow in the Center for Study of Financial Institutions. Four times the students at USC Law School have voted him the Outstanding Faculty Member award. He has received various service awards, and served for years as one of the four public members on South Carolina=s Judicial Merit Selection Commission.
Professor Freeman started law practice in 1970 with the Jones Day law firm and, and subsequent worked for the Securities and Exchange Commission, where he served two summers as a special counsel analyzing mutual fund issues. He taught corporate and securities law, and legal ethics for over 30 years, and has testified as an expert witness or served as trial counsel in various legal malpractice lawsuits, ethics proceedings, and investment-related cases. Professor Freeman has written and lectured extensively on ethics, malpractice and business-related matters, and for 19 years wrote a regular column on professionalism topics for the South Carolina Lawyer. Most recently, Professor Freeman has been addressing as a writer and commentator certain problems with the way some mutual fund sponsors conduct their business, as well as the subject of judicial independence.
Program Agenda
9 a.m.        Overview of a Veteran Advocate’s Appellate Practice: How to Navigate the Board of Veterans’ Appeals and the
                  Veterans Court
                  Douglas J. Rosinski
10 a.m.      Mid-morning break
10:15 a.m. Overview of a Veteran Advocate’s Appellate Practice: How to Navigate the Board of Veterans’ Appeals and the
                  Veterans Court
11:15 p.m.  Ethical Issues in Handling VA Appeals
                   Prof. John Freeman
12:15 p.m.   Adjourn



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